Q. What prompted you to not merely write Did Jesus Exist? but prioritize it?
A. I had wanted to write the book for some time, for a simple reason. A few years ago I started getting emails from people asking me whether or not I thought Jesus existed. Some of these people indicated that they had heard that I thought Jesus did not exist, and they wanted to know if it was true. In fact, it was nowhere close to being true: I had already written a book showing in which I argued what I thought we could say with reasonable certainly about the things Jesus said and did (Jesus: Apocayptic Prophet of the New Millennium). And my idea has always been that for Jesus to say and do these things, he had to exist!
In any event, it struck me as important that there was no book-length treatment of the question of Jesus’ existence by someone who was trained in NT and early Christianity, since we NT scholars tend simply to assume that he existed, without feeling any real compulsion to “prove” it. But as I looked into it….
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