Tuesday, April 11, 2006
The Jesus Wars and Bart Ehrman
Jesus is as big today as he has ever been. He's recently - again - been on the covers of every newspaper and inside (if not on the cover of) every magazine that's out there. As a philosopher I could wonder why the ancient, wise, deep philosophical giants never make USA Today?
The current "Jesus Wars" are big news. In the mix is University of North Carolina professor Bart Ehrman. His book Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why tells his own story of leaving evangelical Christianity for agnosticism, as well as giving us textual criticism of the Bible. And it is Ehrman who is called on to give the commentary on the wildly popular (!!) Gospel of Judas (Which Ehrman understands as a Gnostic, not Jewish, document.). (NOTE: As of this very moment The Gospel of Judas is #5 at amazon.com, The Da Vinci Code is #10, and Misquoting Jesus is #16. At # 9 is Don't Make a Black Woman Take Off Her Earrings : Madea's Uninhibited Commentaries on Love and Life, and at #4 is Cesar's Way : The Natural, Everyday Guide to Understanding and Correcting Common Dog Problems. Plato's Republic is #27,386, which is way, way behind the wisdom of Madea and "Judas."
But back to Bart Ehrman. What about his theories in Misquoting Jesus? A good article can be found at Ben Witherington's blog called "Misanalyzing Text Criticism."