Fabricating Jesus: How Modern Scholars Distort the Gospels

Evans, Craig A.

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Modern historical study of the Gospels seems to give us a new portrait of Jesus every spring--just in time for Easter. The more unusual the portrait, the more it departs from the traditional view of Jesus, the more attention it gets in the popular media.

Why are scholars so prone to fabricate a new Jesus? Why is the public so eager to accept such claims without question? What methods and assumptions predispose scholars to distort the record? Is there a more sober approach to finding the real Jesus?

Commenting on such recent releases as Bart Ehrman's Misquoting Jesus, James Tabor's The Jesus Dynasty, Michael Baigent's The Jesus Papers and the Gospel of Judas, for which he served as an advisory board member to the National Geographic Society, Craig Evans offers a sane approach to examining the sources for understanding the historical Jesus.

Author Information: Craig A. Evans (Ph.D., Claremont) is Payzant Distinguished Professor of New Testament and director of the graduate program at Acadia Divinity College in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. He has written extensively on the historical Jesus and the Jewish background of the New Testament era. His books include Jesus and His Contemporaries: Comparative Studies (1995), Mark (in the Word Biblical Commentary, 2001), Jesus and the Ossuaries (2003) and Ancient Texts for New Testament Studies (2005). His edited volumes include (with Bruce Chilton) Studying the Historical Jesus: Evaluations of the State of Current Research (1994), (with Stanley E. Porter) Dictionary of New Testament Background (2000) and (with John Collins) Christian Beginnings and the Dead Sea Scrolls (2006). He has recently served on the advisory board on the Gospel of Judas for National Geographic Society and has appeared frequently as an expert commentator on network television programs, such as Dateline, and in various documentaries on the BBC, the Discovery Channel and the History Channel.

290 pages
Published September 2008

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