Valerie Tarico’s Historical Denialism

In a recent online article, Valerie Tarico suggests that “a growing number of scholars” are concluding that there was no historical Jesus. It isn’t clear to me that Richard Carrier, Robert Price, and Thomas Brodie represent a “growing number” compared to past generations. If one goes back half a century or more, the idea had [Read More…]

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Israel and Palestine in Sunday School

I was asked by my Sunday school class to help them understand what is going on in Israel and the Palestinian territories, and how if at all this connects with the Bible. I was going to try to make a video with a brief overview of the history of Israel, providing maps and illustrations. But I have [Read More…]

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Fundamentalist Church History Chart

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What If Arianism Had Won?

Diarmaid MacCulloch lectures on this speculative alternative history, covering a lot of interesting real history in the process. HT Mike Bird. [Read more…]

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The Burial of Jesus

Most readers of my blog will know that I wrote a book a few years ago, available as an ebook, on the relationship between history and faith in connection with the events that are on the minds of Christians around the world today through Sunday in particular. The book is The Burial of Jesus: What [Read More…]

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How Christianity Started

Despite having received criticism the last time he did so, C. Michael Patton has posted these two images again, which are supposed to compare how Christianity started with how all other religions started: The first image is simply wrong, unless Patton accepts certain extracanonical texts as historically reliable. The Gospel of Peter depicts a scene [Read More…]

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Komarnitsky Doubting Jesus’ Resurrection (Second Edition)

I have been meaning to post about the second edition of an interesting book by Kris Komarnitsky, Doubting Jesus’ Resurrection: What Happened in the Black Box?, exploring what natural explanation is possible for the rise of Christian belief in the resurrection. I’m kind of glad I waited, because now I can also point to Richard [Read More…]

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Egregious Misuse of Archaeology

Yesterday I became aware of an article that illustrates the dubious way Biblical inerrantists use (and that is the appropriate word, rather than something like “engage in”) archaeology. It included this: Peterson supports conservative Christians getting involved in archaeology in order to use archaeology as a way to prove the Bible historically. “We interpret the [Read More…]

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New Testament Transcripts Prototype

AWOL shared a link to the New Testament Transcripts Prototype of the University of Munster Institute for New Testament Textual Research. If you aren’t already following AWOL – Ancient World Online – then you should be. It highlights fascinating online open access resources, such as the one mentioned above, or the Max Planck Institute for [Read More…]

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Historical Maccabees and Historical Jesus

Mythicists sometimes assert that an account like the Gospels, which features angelic interventions and other such details, ought to be set aside as fiction, rather than setting just the miracles aside and then sifting the rest for potentially useful historical data. As I prepared to touch on the books of the Maccabees in my course [Read More…]

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Is Richard Carrier’s Talk about Acts History?

I found this comment left on a recent posthere on my blog entertaining. It approaches Carrier’s own talk the way Carrier’s talk approaches Acts: Carrier’s presentation of Acts is a fake history. * Lacks key markers of being a real history (Does not reference the primary sources precisely, does not explain his methodology. He reveals [Read More…]

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