Review of Maurice Casey’s Jesus: Evidence and Argument or Mythicist Myths?

My review of Maurice Casey’s book Jesus: Evidence and Argument or Mythicist Myths? has been published in Review of Biblical Literature.  Below is an excerpt from the end of the review. Please click through to read the rest. I suspect that many will find the tone of Casey’s volume rather too acerbic—especially if they have never had [Read More...]

CFP: Doctor Who and History: A Cultural Perspective

From the Doctor Who and History blog: CALL FOR CHAPTER PROPOSALS: DOCTOR WHO AND HISTORY Deadline for abstracts: 1 September 2015 (contributors will be notified within two weeks of the deadline)  When Sydney Newman created a new family-orientated show for the BBC back in early 1963, he envisioned it as being, in John Reith’s terms, to “educate, [Read More...]

Critic of the Domination System

I haven’t tracked down the exact source of the quotation, but Borg discusses the domination system of Jesus’ time, and his relation to it, in The Heart of Christianity: Rediscovering a Life of Faith. [Read more...]

The Burial of Jesus

I wrote the book The Burial of Jesus: What Does History Have to Do with Faith? to mediate historical approaches to the Bible and to Jesus to a Christian audience, and to wrestle with the stories of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection myself, while paying attention to the neglected middle – the traditions about Jesus’ [Read More...]

CNN Covers Mythicism

CNN has an article about mythicism. Here’s a sample: Crossan…says some Jesus deniers may be people who have a problem with Christianity. “It’s a way of responding to something you don’t like,” Crossan says. “We can’t say that Obama doesn’t exist, but we can say that he’s not an American.  If we’re talking about Obama [Read More...]

To Engage or Not to Engage

I had been meaning to blog for a while about the question of whether it is worthwhile engaging with fringe views, whether those that are just barely represented within the academy, or those beyond its pale. It seems appropriate to return to the topic now, since Richard Carrier has offered two blog posts which react to [Read More...]

A Polite Bribe at SBL

There was a showing of the movie Apostle Paul: A Polite Bribe at the Society of Biblical Literature conference in San Diego in November. The video above features Larry Hurtado, Ben Witherington, and Robert Orlando discussing the film after the showing. If you have never seen it, you can rent the movie digitally on Amazon. [Read more...]

Myth and Memory

On his blog Genealogy of Religion, Cris Campbell talks about reading Colin Calloway’s book One Vast Winter Count: The Native American West before Lewis and Clark. The crux of the post can be summed up by quoting Campbell: I have no doubt that indigenous oral traditions are remarkable repositories of deep history and ancient knowledge. They are [Read More...]

When Assyria Conquered Israel

Not only students, but other sources regularly refer to Assyria conquering Israel in 722 BCE. This reflects a misunderstanding of the Bible and other evidence. Assyria was already the dominant power in the region, and had been for a decade or more. Israel and Judah were vassal states within the territory of the Assyrian Empire. [Read More...]

Invaders from the East

They came from far in the East, thousands of miles away. And they took over a land that did not previously belong to them. Their arrival changed the religious, cultural, and political makeup of the territory dramatically. Is this right? How should we view something like this, when it happened hundreds of years ago – indeed, [Read More...]

Identification of Authors in Ancient Literature

A discussion here on this blog brought up the question of whether other ancient works may, like the Gospels, have initially circulated without an author being indicated, with the attribution to the author being added only subsequently to the manuscript tradition. This led to a blog post by Matthew Ferguson, which made comparisons to the works of [Read More...]


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