How Did Judas Iscariot Die? Readers’ Mailbag June 18, 2017

Two questions in this week’s Readers’ mailbag.  The first concerns the very strange tradition about how Judas Iscariot actually died, as found in the writings of the early church father Papias; the second is about modern evangelical Christian biblical scholars: how do they deal with the fact that our manuscripts contain so many textual variants?  If you have a question, feel free to ask, and I’ll add it to the ever growing mailbag.



Papias didn’t think very highly of Judas. I ...

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Does Paul Know about Judas Iscariot?

In my previous post I indicated that Paul shows no evidence of knowing about the tradition that Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus.  In fact, one passage may suggest that he actually did not know about it.  I’ll get to that in a second.

First I need to stress that we really don’t have any way of know most of what Paul knew, or thought he knew, about Jesus’ life.  He tells us so very little.  As I have mentioned on the blog ...

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Judas and the Messianic Secret

Yesterday I gave one reason for thinking that Jesus considered himself the future messiah: he almost certainly told his twelve disciples that they would be future rulers in the coming kingdom.  It is hard to imagine how they could be twelve rulers in a kingdom if he himself was not the one over them, as the ultimate ruler, the king.  Jesus understood the coming kingdom in an apocalyptic sense: it would be brought in by a cataclysmic act of God ...

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