What Would It Take To Get You To Read Richard Carrier’s Book?

A commenter on this blog mentioned how useful it would be if scholars in Classics, ancient Jewish history, or Roman history were to read and give their impressions of Richard Carrier’s book, On the Historicity of Jesus: Why We Might Have Reason for Doubt. The truth is that, just as I am perhaps going to [Read More...]

Daniel Gullotta on the Obscure but Historical Jesus

Daniel Gullotta has been busy online defending the historicity of Jesus against internet pseudoskeptics who don’t understand how historical studies works, and so draw problematic conclusions. In a recent blog post he explained why it is unsurprising that Jesus doesn’t get mentioned by his contemporaries. And then he engaged David Fitzgerald in a debate on the [Read More...]

#GenCon Thursday

I attended several seminars and similar events today at Gen Con. As a Trade Day participant, I was able to enter the exhibit hall before the crowds. I bought some game books that looked promising for teaching purposes, and debated buying one about the persecution of heretics in the Middle Ages. The salesperson turned out [Read More...]

Theoretical Cosmoses and Historical Jesuses

I almost opted for the alternative plural forms of both words in the title of this post – “Theoretical Cosmoi and Historical Jesi.” Just in case anyone was wondering. But I figured it was better to have the words in the title be recognizable. I am constantly surprised when mythicists regard the number of theories about the [Read More...]

The Historical Jesus Goes To University

I recently had a mythicist troll ask for evidence that Jesus is taught as a historical figure at any secular university. I could have merely offered Butler University and been done with it – and perhaps added the University of North Carolina for good measure. But despite the question coming from someone who was clearly a [Read More...]

Moss and Baden on the Lastest Mythicist Nonsense

Via Candida Moss, I learned that she and Joel Baden have responded to – and appropriate poked fun at – the latest mythicist volume to appear, Michael Paulkovich’s No Meek Messiah: Christianity’s Lies, Laws and Legacy. After showing that Paulkovich’s list of 126 ancient authors he thinks should have mentioned Jesus, the list includes people [Read More...]

Galileo was Wrong (Richard Carrier and Arguing from Consensus)

Richard Carrier has posted on arguments from consensus on his blog. It is, like most of his posts, unnecessarily long to make the point that it seeks to. Carrier suggests that laypeople can and should evaluate the arguments of experts, even with respect to the consensus. That seems to me strikingly odd – if laypeople [Read More...]

History and the Bible on Reddit

Today there will be an AMA session on ancient Jewish and Christian history, including but not limited to matters that intersect with the Bible, on the AskHistorians subreddit. I will be participating. Hope you’ll pay a visit! UPDATE: Here’s a direct link:  http://www.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians/comments/1sbq67/we_are_scholarsexperts_on_ancient_judaism/   [Read more...]

Touching Earth

A blog post by Jericho Brisance, “Christian Agnosticism and Touching Earth,” was drawn to my attention. It emphasizes that it is unacceptable to use history and science in an attempt to justify the Bible without being open to the disconfirmation of the Bible through the use of those same methods. Here is a taste: We [Read More...]

Mythicism and Parallelomania around the Blogosphere

My recent use of the term “parallelomania” (popularized by Samuel Sandmel) has sparked some discussion in the blogosphere. It’s All Random…Mostly expressed dislike for the term. Ian then responded, writing: I have some sympathy for just using the term ‘parallelomania’ as a term of skepticism. To say, yes it is fine to find parallels, but as [Read More...]

Was Jesus a Seditionist?

A recent article by Fernando Bermejo-Rubio in The Bible and Interpretation raised the question of whether Jesus was a “seditionist” – which he defines as “The hypothesis that Jesus of Nazareth and his followers were in fundamental sympathy with the principles of the members of the anti-Roman resistance groups, the use of violence not excepted [Read More...]