Dustin Smith on the Evans-Carrier Debate

Dustin Smith has shared his account of the debate that took place yesterday between Craig Evans and Richard Carrier. Click through to read it. [Read more…]

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Independent Variables

Pliny the In Between has illustrated what most mythicists seem unable to grasp. Accepting the existence of a historical Jesus is not about accepting a miracle working human, much less a deity. But in another sense, mythicism is much worse than mainstream historical criticism for those whose aim is to disprove the existence of deities. [Read More…]

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It’s Time to Think about whether Evolution Really Happened

I’m always surprised at how much rancor is directed toward “creationists”—those who deny that evolution, whether on the macro or micro level, is the best explanation for the diversity of life on our planet. I’m also surprised at how certain many biologists are that evolution occurred (Jerry Coyne, to give a prominent example). Yet although I am the first to [Read More…]

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Holy Week History

I spent quite a while simply believing the Gospels. And I have spent quite a while being as skeptical of them as I think is reasonable. Now I am at the point where I recognize the pitfalls at either extreme, and seek to be open to what the evidence suggests – and what the evidence [Read More…]

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No Evidence for Jesus

I have heard once again the ridiculous claim that there is “no evidence for a historical Jesus.” Once again, I must point out that young-earth creationists say the same thing, “there is no evidence for evolution.” In both cases, either the individuals really mean “there is evidence, but I do not accept the conclusions experts [Read More…]

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Patterns of Evidence: Exodus

In my class on the Bible we recently covered the story of the Exodus. Just before we reached that point, I noticed a mention of a new documentary, which seemed to be recycling old ideas, called Patterns of Evidence: Exodus, which in turn is based on the book Exodus – Myth or History? by David Rohl. [Read More…]

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Refugee Christmas

The cartoon above came to my attention via Daily Kos. Brice Jones recently wrote a blog post about Stephen Carlson’s argument regarding the mistranslation “inn” in Luke’s infancy narrative. That in turn builds on the case that Kenneth Bailey has made regarding the cultural background of that story. On the one hand, the traditional versions [Read More…]

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Discussing Mythicism

My recent posts about mythicism, responding to Larry Moran and Jerry Coyne, has sparked discussion on other blogs. See the posts by Don Burrows, Tim O’Neill at a brand new blog called “History for Atheists,” and Chris Eyre. I also had a piece by Brent Lyons drawn to my attention, in which he discusses the [Read More…]

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Sandwalking with Jesus

Larry Moran posted on his blog an excerpt from a conversation we had on Facebook. The conversation showed that he is confused about what historians investigate, because he (like conservative Christians) thinks that “the Jesus of the Bible” – the one who performs miracles and so on – is the only one that matters. I am [Read More…]

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Review of Eric Eve, Behind the Gospels

Behind the Gospels: Understanding the Oral Tradition: Understanding the Oral Tradition. Eve’s book is probably one of the most important books related to the historical Jesus and the Gospels to be published in recent years, since it brings together and evaluates the full range of New Testament scholars who have offered proposals in recent years related [Read More…]

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The Myth of a Mythical Jesus

I appreciated this way that Tim Dooley expressed a major problem with Jesus mythicism on Facebook, and so asked for permission to turn it into a meme. Mythicism tries, on the one hand, to turn the writings of early Christians who thought Jesus had lived in history into evidence of something else, while on the other hand, it [Read More…]

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