Maurice Casey responds to Thomas Thompson

James Tabor wrongly refers to an “all-out war among the experts” regarding the question “Did Jesus exist?” At present, the only person who can be considered an expert in New Testament in any sense, and who has disputed the existence of a historical Jesus in academic publications, is Robert M. Price. He teaches at an [Read More…]

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Review of Richard C. Carrier, Proving History

I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to review Richard Carrier’s latest book, Proving History: Bayes’s Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus. I am grateful to Prometheus Books for sending me a free review copy. Carrier emphasizes from the outset that this is the first of two books, the second of [Read More…]

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Was the Historical Jesus on Facebook?

A piece of news has been getting attention today, about a study of classic myths, some of which we know from archaeological evidence were based on real people or events. The study suggests that the degree to which the relationships in the story mirror real ones – including those one can observe today in social [Read More…]

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Quote of the Day (Larry Hurtado)

I think I’m not alone in feeling that to show the ill-informed and illogical nature of the current wave of “mythicist” proponents is a bit like having to demonstrate that the earth isn’t flat, or that the sun doesn’t revolve around the earth, or that the moon-landings weren’t done on a movie lot.  It’s a [Read More…]

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Mythicism around the Blogosphere

Joseph Hoffmann bid farewell to the gang of four at Vridar. Deseret News has a piece about Bart Ehrman, an agnostic who is convinced there was a historical Jesus.  Rowan Williams reviewed Geza Vermes’ book on Christian origins in The Guardian. Wing Nut Daily turned a professor’s suggestion that Jesus was rather like a muslim, being [Read More…]

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An Odd Diatribe from Thomas L. Thompson

In the latest issue of The Bible and Interpretation, Thomas L. Thompson offers a very odd rebuke to Bart Ehrman. Thompson mentions things like Philo's love of allegory and Qoheleth's assertion of our lack of novelty, as though these somehow will allow one to open the door to any and all interpretations of texts, including [Read More…]

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Tackling Denialism With Painful Logic

Compared to historians and scholars dealing with Jesus mythicists, those who tackle other forms of denialism seem to have it somewhat easier – or would, if denialism could be combated with logic of the sort illustrated in this XKCD cartoon: In related news, while I myself have used the comparison between the tactics used by [Read More…]

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Better Atheist Fact-Checking

Tom Verenna shared a short image reflecting common mythicist misinformation, and (quite justifiably) complained about it. It appears that someone also went through it and illustrated point by point how fact-checking should be done. Here is the result: [Read more…]

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Jesus, John, Paul, George, and Ringo Mythicism

Commenter Admiral Mattbar shared a link to a site, “The Beatles Never Existed.” I got a glimpse of it, but the next time I tried to reload it, it was as though it was not there. I began to wonder if perhaps I should become a “The Beatles Never Existed” web site mythicist… But then there [Read More…]

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Quote of the Day (R. Joseph Hoffmann)

Mythicism is not so much a conspiracy theory as a mass of cobbled  improbabilities that can only be compared to explaining the existence of a discovery by postulating that the scientist credited with  formulating it was really created by a mad scientist who invented the first and a  third who created the one who created him.  This [Read More…]

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Dead, Buried – and Likely to be Believed Resurrected

Thom Stark posted “It Is Finished for Richard Carrier’s Dying Messiah: Part 2.” Joel Watts linked to it with the title “Thom Stark buries Richard Carrier.” Joel also shared 11Q Melchizedek and Wisdom of Solomon as relevant ancient texts to the discussion. So apparently the argument is dead and buried. But I suspect that mythicists [Read More…]

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