Religious Studies and Christian Agendas

In a blog post on the Religious Studies Project website, Raphael Lataster, a postgraduate student at the University of Sydney, has suggested that there is a Christian agenda behind even the supposedly secular study of religion. And he makes that claim because of his own experience of wanting to research mythicism at university. From what [Read More...]

Mythicists at Long Last Ready to Embrace Mainstream Historical Methods Like Divination?

There have been a couple of amusing posts over at Vridar. In one of them, Neil Godfrey discusses Daniel Boyarin’s claim (in his book The Jewish Gospels) that there may have been an expectation about a suffering Messiah prior to Christianity. Whatever your thoughts on this (the view is not unique to Boyarin, but neither [Read More...]

Martin Luther King Quotes

  Some more quotations from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. courtesy of Buzzfeed.   [Read more...]

ORBIS: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World

Via IO9, I learned of a new interactive map of the Roman world: ORBIS: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World. http://orbis.stanford.edu/ You can set a starting and destination point (say Jerusalem and Tarsus, for instance), and find out what was involved in traveling between the two by various means of transportation, including what [Read More...]

Wikis, an Index of Mythicist Claims, and the Positive Case for a Historical Jesus

Those who’ve begun tinkering at the wiki I set up on Wikia already disagree on whether the best use of time and space is to address mythicist claims or to present the positive case for there having been a historical Jesus on its own terms. I don’t see the two as mutually exclusive. But since [Read More...]

Announcing TalkHistoricity: An Index of Mythicist Claims

It was recently suggested to me that it might be useful to put together an index of mythicist claims, and the answers and responses to those claims from the perspective of mainstream historical study. Although it can be said that every claim by mythicists has probably been addressed at least implicitly in scholarly monographs and [Read More...]

Bias and Bayes’ Theorem in History

Regular commenter Ian has posted two more entries on his blog which relate to the use of Bayes’ Theorem in assessing historical probability, in response to Richard Carrier’s advocacy of the use of Bayesian reasoning. One is entitled “Error in Bayes’ Theorem” and the other “Say What I Want To Hear!“ [Read more...]

Is the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife a Fake?

Let me start with the news that Mark Goodacre shared a pdf of an article written by Francis Watson, arguing that the recently-found Coptic papyrus that has been dubbed the “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife” is a fake. He followed that up with a second shorter pdf on the forger’s alleged technique. Some are already pronouncing [Read More...]

3 Jesus’ Wife (With Fill in the Blank at the End)

There’s been even more blogged and discussed about the “Jesus’ wife” Coptic fragment since my last round-up. Most of what I have seen on blogs I read regularly have been wise, balanced, scholarly perspectives. Don Burrows clarifies the difference between absurd media claims and what Karen King and other scholars are saying. Craig Evans offers [Read More...]

2 Jesus’ Wife

The announcement by Karen King about the Coptic fragment which has Jesus mentioning “my wife” is, unsurprisingly, continuing to get much attention and generate much discussion. Rather than keep updating yesterday’s post on the topic, I thought that a follow-up post would be more appropriate, rounding up the blogging and media reporting of the “Gospel [Read More...]

Further Problematizing Richard Carrier’s Claims about Jesus

Ian has a further detailed explanation of Bayes’ Theorem on his blog. It problematizes Richard Carrier’s use of it in relation to history in general, and the historical Jesus in particular. I am also grateful to Nick Covington for sharing this video, which shows more of what Richard Carrier thinks about the figure of Jesus [Read More...]


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