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Misquoting Jesus with Bart Ehrman

Jan 30, 2024

Many listeners have read a relatively new kind of thriller -- about a mysterious discovery of a long-lost Gospel and the protagonist's attempt to make it public, while being hounded in harrowing scenes by political or ecclesiastical forces of darkness (the Nazis! The Vatican!).

In this episodes Bart interviews the first scholar to discuss this genre, who in fact coined its name, in a book just now coming out, Andrew Jacobs, Senior Research Fellow at Harvard. 

The backstory is fascinating and illuminating: these books started to appear during the Cold War, in the context of the increasingly serious questioning of authority, imperialism, and colonialism, and just when biblical scholars were themselves publicizing new finds that called into question the traditional truths of Christianity.

This context raises all kinds of questions. Why the sudden passion for Gospel conspiracy? And are academic scholars dealing with real-life discoveries themselves "objective" observers, or are they too caught up in the ideologies behind these novels?