Jesus at the Movies: Infancy Narratives

I’m having a terrific time with my undergraduate course this semester, a first-year seminar that I call “Jesus in Scholarship and Film.” Last month I posted my syllabus for the class on the blog. This past week was the first time we’ve done any film in the class, and it was very interesting.

For the class I had the students do a writing assignment, in which they compared the infancy narratives of Matthew and Luke in detail (Mark and John, of ...

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The Messy World of Second Century Gospels

This thread has taken several detours (never mind the mixed metaphor), and I want to end it where I had planned to take it all along.   What’s been going on in my mind has been an issue that I raised in one of the posts, about how we are to conceptualize the situation of first and early second century when it comes to our Gospels.   I’ll talk about it with reference to Papyrus Egerton 2, about which I’ve only said ...

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Harmonizing the Gospels

I mentioned yesterday that one of the quotations of the Gospel of the Ebionites, as preserved in the writings of Epiphanius, appears to represent some kind of harmonization of the Gospels, an attempt to explain how the three different versions of what the voice from heaven says at Jesus’ baptism can *all* be right (since the voice says different things in each of the three Gospels).  Solution:  the voice spoke *three* times, saying something different each time. (!)

This way of ...

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My PhD Seminar: Early Christian Apocrypha

A couple of weeks ago I shared on the blog the syllabus for my undergraduate class, “Jesus in Scholarship and Film.”  Periodically I’ll discuss on the blog what I’m doing in that class.  But I thought today I could provide the syllabus for my other course, a PhD Seminar that meets for three-hours, once a week, to discuss “Early Christian Apocrypha.”   Here it is!

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Reli 801: Early Christian Apocrypha

Instructor: Bart D. Ehrman

Fall 2013

The Early Christian Apocrypha are an ...

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The Final Part of My First-Day Quiz

Here is the second half of my pop quiz (see yesterday’s post); some of the questions are just … factual questions.   Some of them give me a chance actually to teach something. ….

 

  1. According to the Gospels, who baptized Jesus?  Who carried his cross?  Who buried him?

Answers:  John the Baptist, Simon of Cyrene and/or Jesus, Joseph of Arimathea.  So this question allows for a teachable moment.  Mark’s Gospel indicates that Simon of Cyrene carried the cross for Jesus.  It does ...

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My Pop Quiz For First-Year Students

It’s been a very long day of teaching (six hours of talking!), so something substantive for the blog will need to wait for another day.   Instead, I’ll say something about what happened today.

As some of you have seen by examining my syllabus, I begin my class on Jesus by giving a pop quiz.  I did that this morning.   The class has 24 students in it, all first-year students, most of them 18 and 19.   (One swallows hard to think of ...

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Who Cares?

Several people – on the blog and off of it – have asked me about the broader significance of my research on the Patristic citations of the NT, specifically the quotations of the Gospels in the writings of Didymus.   Did this research contribute to my loss of faith?  Did it lead me away from evangelical Christianity?  Did it affect my understanding of any Christian doctrine – my view of God, my view of Christ, my view of salvation?  Did it ...

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Did Luke Originally Have Chapters 1-2?

Now that I have finished my unusually deep (for this blog) set of harder-hitting posts on the text of Luke 3:22 I want to move on to other things – very soon to get back to the question of the problems of using Patristic evidence.  But I want to pause first and given the scholarship a rest, and ask a question for those of you who are paying your hard-earned money to belong to and support this blog (but let ...

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A Plea for My Blog

It is good to see that thousands of people are reading the excerpts of my blog posts, either on the blog or on my facebook page.   I intentionally cut these excerpts off part way through, usually before I get to the most interesting and important part.  My hope is that people reading a bit of what I have to say will want then to go on and read all of what I have to say.  To do that, they (you) ...

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Suffering and My Blog

For over a week now I’ve been dealing with a question concerning my views on suffering.  I could go on for days and days, weeks and weeks, about how the problem of suffering is discussed by the writers of the Bible and how I see it from my own perspective.   But it’s not the most cheerful of subjects and I need/want to move on to other things.   I’ve said enough to make my basic points, I think (if anyone wants ...

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