Lecture 16: The Historical Jesus
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Some scholars belief that historical evidence supports the Gospel accounts of Jesus' life, some think the historical evidence supports the inauthenticity of the Gospel accounts, and some think that the historical evidence is irrelevant. The different conclusions are due mainly to different presuppositions. It is possible to propose a probable time line of Jesus' life.
I. The Historical Jesus
A. The Spectrum of Historical Jesus Research
1. Crossan and Borg – historical evidence supports inauthenticity of most of Gospels
2. Johnson – historical evidence irrelevant
3. Wright and Blomberg – historical evidence supports authenticity of most of Gospels
B. Why the Differences?
1. Differing presuppositions (esp. antisupernaturalism)
2. Differing criteria of authenticity (or use of those criteria)
3. Problem of privileging biblical history (but now prejudice is against it)
C. A Probable Time Line of the Life of Christ
1. Birth – 6 B.C.
2. Flight to and return from Egypt – 4 B.C.
3. Teaching in the temple at age 12 – A.D. 7
4. Working as a carpenter in Nazareth – until about A.D. 27
5. John the Baptist's ministry begins – A.D. 27
6. First Passover of Jesus' ministry – A.D. 28
7. Crucifixion and Resurrection – A.D. 30