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Customer Reviews for Baker Academic The Jesus Legend: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition

Baker Academic The Jesus Legend: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition

Much New Testament scholarship of the last 200 years has seen fit, to one degree or another, to relegate the Jesus tradition as recorded in the Gospels to the realm of legend, i.e., to the realm of fiction. But is this really what the evidence points to? By drawing together recent scholarship from a variety of fields, including history, anthropology, ethnography, folklore, and New Testament studies, Paul Eddy and Gregory Boyd show that the evidence actually supports, rather than refutes, the historical reliability of the Gospels and the existence of Jesus.

After first presenting the cumulative case argument for the 'legendary Jesus' thesis, the authors proceed to dismantle it and seriously bring into question its viability. In the process, they range through issues such as the historical-critical method, form criticism, oral tradition, the use of non-Christian sources, the writings of Paul, and the Hellenization of Judaism. They come to the conclusion that the view of Jesus embraced by the early church was 'substantially rooted in history.'

Gregory A. Boyd, formerly professor of theology at Bethel College, is senior pastor of Woodland Hills Church. He is the author of many books, including the critically acclaimed Seeing Is Believing and the best-selling Gold Medallion Award-winner Letters from a Skeptic.

Paul R. Eddy is assistant professor of biblical and theological studies at Bethel College and coeditor of Divine Foreknowledge: Four Views.

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Customer Reviews for The Jesus Legend: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition
Review 1 for The Jesus Legend: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

For every serious reader of gospel reliability!

Date:January 12, 2012
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Danjoe
Location:Washington State
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Great book! It is certainly one of the best of it's kind and anyone seriously interested in the topic should read it. It is fast becoming a very important work. It discusses methodological issues, refutes the claims of Jesus-myth proponents, skeptics who believe Jesus lived, but don't believe much can be known beyond that, defends extra Biblical references to Jesus, demolishes the arguments of the academic ethnocentric scholars that rule out the possibility of miracles, addresses genre and questions of canon, and a whole lot more. GET IT! Finally, I don't like doing this in a review of the book, but I have to address what the other reviewer said so that some people are not misled. I must say with as much respect as I can, I don't think his review is trustworthy. Here is why: He says this book is a rehash of the arguments in the works of N. Geisler, W.L. Craig, and McDowell. Hardly. First, Craig does not much of anything in the area of defending the historical reliability of the Gospels in general. This book does. Rather Craig focuses on defending certain claims about the Gospels that relate to the resurrection. This is why Craig's newest edition of Reasonable Faith does not contain a chapter on the reliability of the Gospels. In the second edition, he had a chapter on it, but Craig did not even write it, Blomberg did! In fact Craig, argued with the publishers because he did not want a chapter defending Gospel reliability! Boyd and Eddy's book refutes the Christ-myth. Where does Craig do a comparable job of this? Craig understandably ignores it since it is not an issue in the scholarly community. Craig does not ever go into the depths of defending extra Biblical sources the way this book does. Where does Craig give an extended refutation of the Christ-myth the way this book does? For that matter, where do Geisler and McDowell? They don't go into nearly the depth. And this is a major focus of Boyd and Eddy's book. How then could it be a rehash? It's not! I could go on and on. Suffice it to say, the reviewer has not persuaded me of anything except that he either has not read this book, or has not read Geisler and McDowell.
+3points
3of 3voted this as helpful.
Review 2 for The Jesus Legend: A Case for the Historical Reliability of the Synoptic Jesus Tradition
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Date:September 17, 2007
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david s.
this book aims to disarm the theories that the Jesus of the new testament is nothing more than myth and legend. there is a lot of info in this work and it covers lots of grounds, deals with philosophical presuppositions against the supernatural, the historical nature and reliability of the new testament gospel accounts and more. I give it only 3 stars because it is basically a rehash of typical christian apologetics along the lines of Norman Geisler, William Lane Craig, Josh McDowell, and the like. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty to ponder in these trains of thought and this book, but these types of works being apologetic in nature are a little less interested in being as objective as possible (a tough thing ) and instead these types of books are really grinding an axe which may cause some skewing of the issues. of course the same is true of the skeptics and their works. anyhow this work is worth checking out for an updated typical conservative christian apologetic work on safeguarding the new testament Jesus idea from "doubters", but again that's about all it really is. for a much more objective study, yet still a conservative one, Michael McClymond's Familiar Stranger is a gem! CBD has it too.
-3points
1of 5voted this as helpful.