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Orthodoxy and Proto-Orthodoxy

Orthodoxy and Proto-Orthodoxy - the current thread on the diversity of early Christianity actually began as a response to a question raised by a reader, which was the following: Dr. Ehrman, I do not know if others would find this interesting, but I would love to know how you developed the idea for The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture. How did you go about researching it? How long did it take? Is it a once-in-a-lifetime work? My initial thought was that I would be able to answer the question in roughly five or six posts.   But here it is, two weeks later, and I haven’t even started to answer it because it has taken this long to describe what I mean by the term “orthodox.”   And I haven’t finished doing even that!  But I hope to do so with this post. Orthodoxy and Proto-Orthodoxy - Right Belief vs False Belief To this point I have tried to explain why so many scholars for the past 80 years or so have been convinced that we cannot understand [...]

How Diverse Was Early Christianity?

In order to get to the question of what motivated my book The Orthdox Corruption of Scripture, and to explain more fully what the book was about, I have spent three posts talking about the terms “orthodoxy” and “heresy” and why they are problematic; in doing so I have been explaining both the traditional view of the relationship of orthodoxy and heresy (as found, for example, in the writings of Eusebius) and the view set forth, in opposition, by Walter Bauer.   Several readers have asked where we now stand on the issue, some 80years after Bauer’s intervention. As I indicated in my last post, there are some problems with Bauer’s analysis, but also much positive to say about it.   Conservative scholars continue to hold to a more traditional view (e.g., conservative Roman Catholic and evangelical scholars); others find it *basically* convincing, even if they would write the details up very differently from Bauer. I am very much, and rather enthusiastically .... THE REST OF THIS POST IS FOR MEMBERS ONLY.  If you don't belong yet, [...]

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