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Monday, 07 May 2018

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Should you buy the book? NO! Not until you have fought and won the Crusades. All of them! By then you will be too saddle sore to worry about reading!

Amazon allows you to download a sample which, having read, will allow you to make your own decision. I often do this with authors I have not read before.

You won't find a reliable biography of Jesus because scholars don't agree he was an actual person. Starting with the history of the Bible itself would be a better start, but you might try the 'Jefferson Bible', which can be found online for no charge. Thomas Jefferson considered Jesus a great moral philosopher but not a god. He took a razor to the Bible and cut out and assembled those parts he thought legitimate history.

The Bible, any Bible, is absolutely the last place I would look for a realistic attempt to find a history of the man they call Jesus but surely an agnostic someone somewhere has tried!

Well I was going to say the Bible (including the Old Testament - very important that).
I did a google search on the historical Jesus books - there are a lot out there, but this link I seemed to like their pick the best.
https://jhkronos.jhu.edu/wfc/applications/navigator/Navigator.do

The Biblical New Testament is the only history of Jesus. It was written in Koine Greek, and it's important to understand why. As I recall there's no mention of Jesus by anyone outside the circle of Christians except Josephus. His was written almost a century after the fact:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josephus_on_Jesus

The Romans had chroniclers and other writers and the events mentioned in the Bible, if they'd actually happened, would certainly have been recorded at the time. The Wiki article mentions some of the problems of interpreting ancient writings.

There's a growing number of scholars who believe Jesus was a literary character who was a combination of those from several other mythologies. Here's one I've read:

https://www.amazon.com/Deconstructing-Jesus-Robert-M-Price/dp/1573927589

If you want to believe Jesus was a real person, Gary Habermas makes one of the most convincing arguments. He has a free online book:

http://www.garyhabermas.com/Evidence/

Oops, I forgot about the Gnostic Gospels:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nag_Hammadi_library

They present a very different Jesus. The early Church tried to destroy these writings.

Dear Miss Red, where have you been? I yearned, Ma'am, I yearned!

Bob, thank you for the links. I have a sinking feeling I shouldn't have asked the question in the first place!

weird link that. oh well.
Duffers, rest assured I am always here!

Oh Bob?

https://www.amazon.com/Jesus-Dynasty-Hidden-History-Christianity/dp/074328724X

And the author's credentials:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Tabor

Too there's some dispute where Josephus is concerned but:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josephus_on_Jesus

You've probably too Bob, seen this from a good friend of mine?

http://malcolmpollack.com/2016/03/04/live-and-learn/

Of course there are those so superior as yourself Bob, that you feel obligated toward the agenda. Sort of reminds me of Obama with his "It's not surprising, then, they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Cuts both ways though, in my humble estimation.

Oh crikey, I wish I hadn't asked, er, about the *historical* Jesus, that is! Thank you, everyone, for your contributions. I have obviously opened a door to a maze - or perhaps a catacomb - and I will tread slowly and carefully although whether I ever find anything definitive, I rather doubt!

JK,

Sorry I went off about Christianity the other day. I can be a grumpy old man with the best of 'em.

Another author I've read who is highly regarded on the subject is Bart Ehrman:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bart_D._Ehrman

Everyone interested should read the available evidence and make up their own mind about religion.

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