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Jesus Outside the New Testament: An Introduction to the Ancient Evidence
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Jesus Outside the New Testament: An Introduction to the Ancient Evidence

4.2  ·  Rating Details ·  41 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews

Did Jesus actually exist? Much has been written recently on this subject, including numerous books examining the New Testament record of Jesus' life. Now Robert Van Voorst presents and critiques the ancient evidence outside the New Testament—the Roman, Jewish, pre-New Testament, and post-New Testament writings that mention Jesus.

This fascinating study of the early Christ
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Paperback, 262 pages
Published April 13th 2000 by Eerdmans (first published March 1st 2000)
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Scott
Jul 24, 2012 Scott rated it really liked it
A superb short introduction to the relevant texts. Van Voorst reasonably lays out his positions on authenticity, redaction, and relevance. He generally articulates mainstream opinions as well as important dissenting scholarship. The author's sober analysis will be valuable to all histero-critical scholars whether promoters of some new variant of the "historical Jesus" or apologists for received orthodoxy.
Greg
Feb 16, 2014 Greg rated it really liked it
This is an interesting book, an excellent summary of the extrabiblical evidence for Jesus. Where it fails, is the author's interpretation. At times, he is properly skeptical, but at others, is overly credulous and seems to bend over backwards to uncritically accept that a particular document is actual evidence for the historical Jesus
For example with Josephus he accepts it is tampered with and that much of it, such as "wise man" is very unlike Josephus but still accepts this as part of the origi
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Pete daPixie
Jan 22, 2010 Pete daPixie rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical-jesus
As an introduction to the Ancient Evidence (Studying the Historical Jesus), this is a superb introduction from Van Voorst.
Effectively there are only four chapters to this book, dealing with Classical writings-Jewish writings-Sources of the canonical gospels and writings after the New Testament. The author has gathered all the usual suspects, and more besides, as evidence for the historical Jesus.
All the sources are placed in historical context and so very well explained and summed up.
The classic
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Rhesa
Apr 16, 2009 Rhesa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-study
Richard Dawkins once said that “The virgin birth, the Resurrection, the raising of Lazarus, even the Old Testament miracles, all are freely used for religious propaganda, and they are very effective with an audience of unsophisticates and children”

Well perhaps Mr.Dawkins should read this book, you know that even if you tear the whole gospel and cast it into the Pacific ocean, you can still historically tell the story of Jesus with academic integrity, and how could that be?

Plenty of Greek and Ro
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Micki James
Sep 14, 2012 Micki James is currently reading it
I have a weakness for non-fiction. A lot of this material is not so well-known. People may know the handful of truly early references to Robin Hood or King Arthur and yet never have heard of the seven references to Jesus in classical writings, sufficient evidence to adduce that Jesus actually existed, which is more than we can attest to about, say, Mohammed.
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