The Fake Jordan Lead Codices

It is distressing to see people blogging and “news” outlets reporting once again about the lead codices from Jordan as though they might conceivably be authentic ancient artifacts. It has been shown that they take text and images from known artifacts and reproduce them over and over again in an attempt to produce something that aims to [Read More…]

Case Closed on the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife – but there’s more to be said at #aarsbl16

A fair amount of discussion has been taking place online about the authenticity of some new manuscripts that have come to light recently. These include one that has been dated to the 7th century BCE and which mentions Jerusalem, as well as a collection of new dead sea scrolls. And so it is time for me to revisit [Read More…]

“Registered Historical Archaeologist”

That young-earth creationists lie to the general public bothers me. That I once fell for their lies and passed them on to others bothers me a little more. But I feel genuine anger when my students are influenced by their lies. Not a semester passes without some student happening across YEC materials and mistaking them for [Read More…]

The Gist of Jesus

It has been interesting teaching my course on the historical Jesus again. Even in the few years that have passed since the last time I taught it, the strong shift in the academy away from an older approach to the subject has been very noticeable. Much of this is due to the impact of the work [Read More…]

Christians in Name Only

This cartoon has been making the rounds. It is a pity that some are treating it as a condemnation of Christians, when it clearly is a condemnation of a group that I think ought to be labeled CINA: “Christians in Name Only.” If you fear others, hate others, judge others, and fail to hold yourself [Read More…]

Fakes, Forgeries, and Fictions Conference

Tony Burke mentioned that the website for the upcoming York Christian Apocrypha Symposium has been updated. Click through for details about the papers that I and other presenters – who include Bart Ehrman, Annette Yoshiko Reed, Mark Goodacre, Carrie Schroeder, and Stanley Porter – will be giving. The title of my paper is: “Slow Scholarship: Do Bloggers [Read More…]

Christian “College” Ad

I saw this ad on Reddit. It is no different than a lot of the degree mill scams around, except this one is using religion in service of the deception. If the Bible is “your only textbook” then you are not getting a college education – not even a Christian college education. Most Christians are aware that, [Read More…]

Jesus and the Historian’s Craft

Tim O’Neill has posted part 1 and part 2 of an online article which is getting a lot of discussion: “An Atheist Historian Examines the Evidence for Jesus.” He does a really good job not just of explaining what the positive evidence is for there having been a historical Jesus, but why mythicist counterarguments are unpersuasive, [Read More…]

Problematic Papyri

Brice Jones has brought to light some disturbing news about the alleged first century fragment of the Gospel of Mark that we’ve been waiting to hear more about after tantalizing references to it were made some years ago. It seems to be connected not just with the Green Collection but also with Josh McDowell. Given [Read More…]

Horus Trolls the Atheists Again

A colleague of mine shared this bit of internet nonsense on Facebook: I am disappointed when anyone repeats bogus information without fact-checking it, but I am even more disappointed when it is an educator. I sometimes think that young-earth creationists might be atheists pretending to be delusional and dishonest Christians in order to make Christianity [Read More…]