Note: This is a post written by Chris H. (@unicornwiz) in response to a recently published piece by @GodlessEngineer entitled "Inanna's Descent Matches Jesus' Passion Narratives." Chris can be reached on Twitter or at his email address biblicalhistoryskeptic32ad@gmail.com. Well, today I’m going to do a basic treatment of Inanna’s Descent into the Underworld for one... Continue Reading →

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So I decided to host my first livestream discussion and did so with Chris H., a brilliant guy who has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the Hebrew Bible and its relationship to Ancient Near Eastern cultures. We talked about the Gospel of Mark, the Pentateuch, the Canaanite pantheon, textual criticism, the Sea Myth, and so... Continue Reading →

I was finally able to listen to part 2 of "Pete ruins Exodus" over at the podcast The Bible for Normal People. As usual, great material looking at the beginning stages of Moses' call to Egypt, including that bizarre scene in Exodus 4:24-26. The next installment of Koine Greek's reading of the Gospel of Mark... Continue Reading →

Candida Moss (University of Birmingham) wrote a piece back in March on Apollonius, the miracle-working son of God that is often compared to Jesus. In it Moss, a prolific writer and scholar, observes that many in the ancient Mediterannean were considered the son of this or that God and that the miracles of Jesus "weren't completely unprecedented."... Continue Reading →

"When Jesus calls Herod Antipas a 'fox' (Luke 13:32), most modern European readers will automatically think this means he considered Herod to be particularly clever or craft....The same association would naturally have occurred to a Greek reader in the 1st century. In Greek literature, the fox is proverbially a crafty animal. In Jewish literature, however,... Continue Reading →

"The 'Amalgam Jesus' idea boils down to little more than hand waving. It is a vague and grudging admission that there may be some historical kernels in the story, but a rather muddle-headed attempt to keep this from becoming an acceptance that there was most likely a historical Jesus. As such, it is not so... Continue Reading →

The Death(s) of Judas

In light of a recent blog post by a certain pop-apologist,[1] I thought it might be appropriate to lay out a brief case for seeing the two accounts of Judas Iscariot’s death in the New Testament (Matthew 27:3-10; Acts 1:18-19) as contradictory. To begin with, let’s consider each passage in turn and then compare them... Continue Reading →

"What would lead people to make all this stuff up – all of it – from scratch? Not just embroidering or adding to existing stories about an existing person, but inventing all of the above, including the bits that clearly work against their purposes? So far, I have not heard an adequate explanation for this.... Continue Reading →

"Through the identification with Bartimaeus and subsequent minor characters, the reader is encouraged to move beyond faith in Jesus and his power toward a more faithful acceptance of the demands and values of Jesus." - Joel F. Williams1 MARK 10:46-522 46 And they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples... Continue Reading →

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