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Did Jesus Exist?: The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth Paperback – March 19, 2013
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“His newest book has turned some of his perennial critics into fans, at least temporarily. In Did Jesus Exist?: The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth, Ehrman decimates the persistent arguments of those who not only deny the divinity of Jesus but insist that no such man ever even existed.” (Christian Science Monitor)
From the Back Cover
The Truth Behind the Jesus Myth
Large numbers of atheists, humanists, and conspiracy theorists are raising one of the most pressing questions in the history of religion: "Did Jesus exist at all?" New York Times bestselling author Bart Ehrman confronts this question head-on and provides a compelling portrait of the Jesus you may not have hoped to meet—but he did exist whether we like it or not.
Top customer reviews
In general, I like Mr. Ehrmans writing style. So if you do as well and have interest in this topic, give it a read.
The question at hand that keeps the reader involved is, "If Jesus was not a mythical creature, if he actually did exist, then what was he all about, what was his primary message?" Ehrman has an answer for that too. But first I must say that the book has a sad ending. The patient on the table--Jesus-- dies. The surgery in the end was a failure.
Erhman believes, quite convincingly, that Jesus was an apocalyptic prophet in the Jewish tradition of his time. Jesus believed and preached that God would soon intervene and destroy the forces of evil, bring in his good kingdom on earth, and install him on his throne. There is just one problem. Jesus was wrong. In fact, he was mistaken about a lot things. People don't want to hear that, Ehrman points out.
The difficulty, Ehrman believes, is that this historical Jesus is obviously far too historical for modern tastes. Ehrman is right. Out of the context of his time, the overriding message of Jesus is preposterous, leaving anyone grasping for a meaningful faith nowhere to go, no inspiring message to believe in. Jesus the wisdom sage or Jesus the social revolutionary, for example, might offer solace, guidance, and hope but a Jesus predicting the end times leaves us only a corpse.