Image Credit: TabletMag, Adam Kirsch, 2013.
As we saw in a short essay I wrote a while back, there are a few important criteria for establishing a high probability of a historical event or saying. These are early and independent attestation, and the criterion of embarrassment. Early and independent attestation is when a saying/event (s) appears in multiple sources which are near to the time at which S is alleged to have occurred and which depend neither upon each other nor a common source. The criterion of embarrassment is when S is awkward or counter-productive for the persons who serve as the source of information for S. If S passes one or more of these criteria then it is deemed historically likely to have occurred. How might one view some of Jesus’ statements in this light?
This is a necessary question given that there is doubt or suspicion regarding certain words/sentences attributed…
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