Jesus and history, the believer and the historian

The Elusive Messiah: A Philosophical Overview of the Quest for the Historical Jesus, by Raymond Martin

Elusive Messiah indeed! At the end of the 19th century Jesus was Adolph von Harnack’s teacher of “the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of mankind”; in the early years of the 20th century, Albert Schweitzer’s despairing Messiah; in the ’30s, Rudolf Bultmann’s preacher of obedience. Now, after another generation of New Testament scholars has produced its portraits, Jesus has become many things—eschatological prophet, “marginal Jew,” magician, secular sage.


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