D.M. Murdock, aka "Acharya S," has written a really fine introduction to the problem of the Historical Jesus. She couches everything in the most basic terms, comprehensible to the layman, and lays out the problem and all the issues in a both really readable and digestible form. Her charts are insightful and extremely useful and presented in such a way as to make things immediately plausible to the general reader. I can recommend her work whole-heartedly for anyone on a world-wide basis who really wants to know what is at stake in approaching and coming to terms with the real person behind the literary image provided by those who created the story of "Jesus." --Robert H. Eisenman, Ph.D, The New Testament Code
I loved this book. It is absolutely superb in every way, from the eloquence of the writing to the integrity of the scholarship. This book should be required reading in every American classroom.... Ms. Murdock is one of only a tiny number of scholars with the richly diverse academic background (and the necessary courage) to adequately address the question of whether Jesus Christ truly existed as a walking-talking figure in first-century Palestine. This question, and many others related to New Testament reliability, are directly confronted and satisfyingly answered in Who Was Jesus? My personal recommendation is that Who Was Jesus? should be the first book purchased and studied by anyone, atheist or true believer, who wants to debate Jesus' existence and the Bible's veracity.... You should therefore make this book priority reading even over The God Delusion, God is Not Great and other excellent but, in my opinion, less important books than Murdock's! .... --David Mills, Atheist Universe
I've known people with triple Ph.D's who haven't come close to the scholarship here. I think I've read every popular alternative theory about Jesus that has come down the pike--with Who Was Jesus? I was very impressed. --Pastor David Bruce, M.Div Pastor David Bruce, M.Div Pastor David Bruce, M.Div, HollywoodJesus.com
Thirty years ago, when in divinity school, I might have had second thoughts about becoming an Episcopal priest if a book like D. M. Murdock's Who Was Jesus? had been available to me. Murdock's book, probably the best of this genre - written with clarity, precision, and conviction - unpacks most of the nonsense and mythology surrounding the ancient Hebrew figure called Jesus and presents a compelling picture of a mythological amalgam to counter most of the misinformation and wishful-thinking that passes for Christian apologetics today. -- Bob Semes, Retired Professor of History and Religion
From the Author
I wrote this book, Who Was Jesus?, after many people asked me to produce a simple and easy-to-read introduction to the problems with the New Testament, both in its creation/history and within the text itself. This book has been deemed "kinder and gentler" by one Christian apologist, as it more-or-less gently leads the reader from a neutral recitation of the gospel story according to Matthew, proceeding through the other gospels and showing how they differ, into the problems with the dating of the canonical gospels, as well as the lack of mention of Jesus Christ, Christians or Christianity in the works of dozens of writers during the first and second centuries, and so on.
This book differs from my others in that it focuses on the Christian texts themselves, mainly limited to the four canonical gospels, with only a few, brief discussions relating some comparative mythology. It contains information that was difficult to find and does not appear in my other works, such as the writings of early Church fathers in which they discuss the creation of the canonical gospels as having taken place during what we now call the second century.
The book is also unique in that it uses the works of many well-respected Christian authorities and apologists, as well as New Testament scholars and theologians, revealing a strain of critical scholarship that few laymen are familiar with.
Many people have found it useful to provide copies of Who Was Jesus? to their Christian friends and family members, so they too can learn about the problems with the New Testament that scholars have addressed over the past several centuries into the most modern times.