Mythicist vs. Short Smiling Scholar

It has been a while since I have blogged about mythicism. But several mythicism-related blog posts have appeared over the past day or so. I will start with the most entertaining. Rene Salm managed to get a paper accepted at SBL, and not only has he shared his paper online, but at the blog Vridar [Read More…]

Class on the Crucifixion and Passion Narratives in the New Testament

Since this is another class without changing powerpoint slides, I’m making this one available as an mp3 podcast as well: [audio:http://wp.patheos.com.s3.amazonaws.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/files/2012/10/Passion_narratives_default.mp3] [Read more…]

Bias and Bayes’ Theorem in History

Regular commenter Ian has posted two more entries on his blog which relate to the use of Bayes’ Theorem in assessing historical probability, in response to Richard Carrier’s advocacy of the use of Bayesian reasoning. One is entitled “Error in Bayes’ Theorem” and the other “Say What I Want To Hear!“ [Read more…]

Further Problematizing Richard Carrier’s Claims about Jesus

Ian has a further detailed explanation of Bayes’ Theorem on his blog. It problematizes Richard Carrier’s use of it in relation to history in general, and the historical Jesus in particular. I am also grateful to Nick Covington for sharing this video, which shows more of what Richard Carrier thinks about the figure of Jesus [Read More…]

Jesus and Spock

Eruesso shared this tattoo of Spock depicted in imagery typically associated with Jesus: He said he’ll leave it to me to decipher it (presumably not the text, which is “Live Long and Prosper” in Spanish, but the significance of the whole thing). If he expects me to explain why someone would etch this permanently onto [Read More…]

Richard Carrier Responds

Richard Carrier has posted a response to my review of his book, Proving History. I'm not sure that there is anything that needs to be said by me in response, since he clearly is hedging on whether the earliest Jewish Christians thought that Jesus was a God, accepts what is perhaps the clearest example of [Read More…]

Stuff Mythicists Say: “Q Was Real, Jesus Wasn’t”

Mythicists say a lot of ludicrous things, and perhaps it would be useful to highlight some of the more astonishing and laughable ones from time to time. Mythicists like Earl Doherty will accept the existence of Q – a hypothetical source the existence of which is deduced from the common material shared between Matthew and [Read More…]

A Mathematical Review of Proving History by Richard Carrier

Regular commenter Ian has posted a review of Richard Carrier’s recent book, focused on the use of Bayes’ Theorem. It can be found on his blog Irreducible Complexity. [Read more…]

Biblical Studies Around the Blogosphere

There’s a new issue of the open access Biblical studies journal Relegere, featuring several interesting articles, including an article about U2 and the Psalms, one about Genesis 1-3 and evolution, and an essay by James Crossley offering “An Immodest Proposal for Biblical Studies.” There will be a conference about the criteria of authenticity in historical Jesus [Read More…]

Restoring Jesus

I’ve felt like there was some analogy or parable to be made from the recent case of a parishioner trying to do an amateur restoration of a famous painting, with this result: Perhaps the best or at least the most relevant analogy for the sorts of subjects that I deal with is this: The figure [Read More…]


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