James D. G. Dunn on Adamic Christology in Philippians 2:6-11

The possibility of a comparison between Jesus and Adam in Philippians 2:6-11 has been one of the major talking points in discussions of Pauline Christology over the past three decades. Since at least one major proponent of mythicism somehow managed to miss this entirely while allegedly doing research into early Christianity, I am sharing links [Read More...]

What Makes Something Historical?

As a result of recent discussions of mythicism, I thought it might be interesting and useful to post a question about the very nature of history. What makes a person or event “historical”? At the moment, I am inclined to think that it is, when it comes down to it, really nothing other than the [Read More...]

Julius Caesar Mythicism vs. Jesus Mythicism: Smackdown!

Tom Verenna shared some thoughts on something I wrote recently, in a comment on the Vridar blog, in which I suggested that it is not harder to be a mythicist about Julius Caesar than about Jesus, and that the same tactics and methods used by Jesus mythicists could be employed for good effect in the [Read More...]

Mythicism: The Heart of the Matter?

I think that Neil Godfrey’s recent post on “fear of mythicism” raises what may be the most important issue in relation to mythicism. After listing numerous comments on this blog which make comparisons between mythicism and other fringe views such as creationism and holocaust denial, Godfrey writes: I can read rational, evidence-based rebuttals of holocaust [Read More...]

Why the Scientifically Literate Can Believe Silly Things

Jim Kidder pointed to and quoted from a piece in Discover Magazine by Chris Mooney, and this quote from it is worth circulating widely: If you understand motivated reasoning, then you understand that high levels of knowledge, education, and sophistication are no defense against wrongheaded views like climate change denial and anti-evolutionism.  What I’ll call “sophistication” may [Read More...]

Making Stuff Up About Messiahs and Me

Neil Godfrey is at it again. I suspected from some of his recent posts that he had either misunderstood or was gearing up to misrepresent me – not to mention the field of Jewish studies. In his latest post, he writes the following: “James McGrath claims all Messiah figures were expected to be conquering kings.” [Read More...]

Mythicism and Peer Review

Note what Earl Doherty says in the next sentence after the one I quoted in my previous post: Great. Finally something that will give mythicism a shot in the arm. After all, if someone like Bart Ehrman feels the necessity to take it on, that implies a certain degree of legitimacy. It can no longer [Read More...]

Bart Ehrman on Mythicism

As many of you will be aware, Bart Ehrman is working on an ebook about mythicism. If you would like a foretaste, here is a radio interview on YouTube with Bart Ehrman on the subject, in which the host Reginald Finley tries to suggest mythicism might have some plausibility to it, and digs himself deeper [Read More...]

Round-Up of Mythicist Blogging

I noticed that the link to my round-up of blogging about mythicism was wrong in one of my early posts on the topic here. Rather than just make a change there so long after posting, when it probably would not be noticed, I thought I would share the correct link here. Round-up of blogging about [Read More...]

Mythicism, Miraculous Conceptions and Ancient Historians

Over in a discussion at Debunking Christianity about mythicism and a recent post of mine, a proponent of mythicism claimed that ancient biographers and historians, unlike the authors of the Gospels, were not prone to include legends about such matters as miraculous conceptions. Although at that point we were talking about Socrates, in fact we [Read More...]

No Evidence for a Historical Jesus or Evolution?

I am struck once again by how similar the repeated assertion by Earl Doherty and other mythicists that “there is no evidence for a historical Jesus” resembles the similar-sounding claim of creationists that there is “no evidence for evolution.” The truth clearly is both that there is evidence, and that because we are in both [Read More...]


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