Saturday, January 7, 2017

Bart Ehrman's Current Beliefs Regarding Jesus and His Divinity

The following are some aspects of Bart Ehrman's CURRENT views (as of the date of this post) regarding the Historical Jesus and claims about Jesus' divinity. Ehrman is a globally known agnostic scholar and New Testament critique. Much of the following list (1-10) are from Robert Bowman's critque of Ehrman's book How Jesus Became God. Bowman discusses his list starting at 24 minutes and 36 seconds.

Things Bart Ehrman believes according to Robert Bowman 

1.Ehrman believes Jesus was a real historical person. That Jesus was a Galilean Jew who preached things regarding the Kingdom of God.

2. Ehrman doesn't believe everything that the Gospels say. Nevertheless, he believes the canonical New Testament gospels are the earliest, and for all practical purposes, the only valuable sources of detailed information about the historical Jesus. The Gnostic gospels are worthless in regard to discovering anything regarding the historical Jesus.

3. Ehrman believes Jesus thought that he was, or at least would become, the Messiah.

4. Ehrman believes Jesus was crucified at the order of Pontius Pilate and that he actually died on the cross.

5. Ehrman believes some of Jesus' ORIGINAL followers (not decades later) sincerely believed that they saw Jesus alive from the dead.

6. Ehrman believes that the belief that Jesus rose from the dead convinced his disciples almost immediately that he was a divine figure exalted to the right hand of God. It was not a later development. There never was a Christianity that viewed Jesus as just a good teacher.

7. Ehrman believes the belief that Jesus was a divine figure who existed before his human life (who pre-existed) was accepted by at least some Christians even before Paul's earliest Epistles (even though Paul's earliest Epistles all pre-date the Gospels).

8. Ehrman believes that in Phil. 2:6-11 Jesus IS presented as a pre-existent "divine" (in some sense) figure who became a human being.

9. Ehrman now believes, contrary to his past opinion, that Jesus IS called "God" (in some sense) in Rom. 9:5. See chapter 7 of Ehrman's book How Jesus Became God [The relevant passage is quoted here:]

10. Ehrman believes that the author of the Gospel of John clearly taught in the Gospel that Jesus existed before creation as someone who was distinct from God the Father, and yet was "God" (in some sense) and was equal to God (the Father). Furthermore, that the author of John didn't originate  this view. For example, the prologue derives from pre-Johannine sources.

[ Numbers 1-10 from Bowman]

11. Ehrman believes, and has stated numerous times in debate, that John 8:58 does have the author of the Gospel making Jesus claim to be "God".

12.Ehrman believes all authors of the 4 canonical Gospels personally believed that Jesus was "God" (in some sense and in different ways). See this video here at 18 minutes and 48 seconds:

I'm not sure about this, but according to Tony Costa Bart Ehrman sees a general consistency and continuation in Paul's teaching when compared to Jesus' teaching. As opposed to a stark difference or contrast.

see also:

Resources Responding to Bart Ehrman


My Blog Trinity Notes

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