NT313 Jesus and The Witness of the Outsiders error

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Kristine Lewis | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Jan 9 2018 2:03 PM

Segment 2, Suggesting Reading For Early Christian Worship in Lexham Bible Dictionary, displays only the letter "s" and not the text of the article within LBD on Early Church Worship, Sources, A Letter of Pliny the Younger to Trajan the Emperor (X.XCVI).

Posts 394
Miles Custis | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 9 2018 2:31 PM

Thanks for pointing this out. It looks like an issue with the Courses Tool. The link work correctly when you click on it from the course resource itself (NT313EVANS). We'll try to get the learning plan for the course updated so it works correctly in the Courses Tool.

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Tom Reynolds | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 11 2018 8:29 PM

Here's another error, or at least a very strange and garbled lesson example...

I was interested to see that one of the outline points is "Reference to Jesus in Hebrew Josephus." That sounded pretty interesting to me as we don't have a Hebrew translation of Josephus. In that section he talks about a much later work that used parts from Josephus's work. I looked for the context of the phrases Evans quotes and Google pointed me to an article he wrote for a book he edited. https://books.google.com/books?id=3H7MWItYHlQC&pg=PA380&lpg=PA380&dq=%E2%80%98robbers+of+our+nation,%E2%80%99+who+strayed+after+Jesus,+son+of+Joseph.%E2%80%9D&source=bl&ots=qmGthzi6bT&sig=S3a54HLZiw_xomAaMzdpmR7mjXg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwizrpK3mtHYAhVE5GMKHdEYDQ8Q6AEIKTAA#v=onepage&q=%E2%80%98robbers%20of%20our%20nation%2C%E2%80%99%20who%20strayed%20after%20Jesus%2C%20son%20of%20Joseph.%E2%80%9D&f=false. Evans, Craig A, ed (2004) The Historical Jesus: Critical Concepts in Religious Studies. vol 4: Lives of Jesus and Jesus Outside the Bible. pp379-80] It is actually a reconstruction by a scholar named Eisler and Evans states that "This passage appears to be no more than a restatement of the legendary materials found scattered in the rabbinic writings.” Concerning the Yosippon in general he states that “no one today thinks the material that it contains shines any light on events of the first century.”

I would humbly suggest that in this course Evans needs to make it clear that Josephus didn't write the Yosippon and that it is much later. He should also quote the extant text rather than Eisler's reconstruction as it is also interesting.

On the whole the course needs clarity in the value of the texts he is referencing. He includes everything here but in his book chapter, from which this course material is clearly taken, he makes numerous statements about the lack of value of the materials in our knowing anything about the actual time and life of Jesus. For example, in our course he talks about the slavonic Josephus and quotes re. a supposed tablet. However, in his book he dismisses the slavonic Josephus' information thus: "“to my knowledge no one today believes that they contain anything of value for Jesus research.” This scholarly judgment might not fit Logos' rah rah buy more resources related to this topic because look at all the interesting stuff you will come across but it needs to be made.

It would also be nice if Evans made mention of the dating of various materials. This might help us discern which is more valuable. The very title of the course is unhelpful in that regard I suppose because it implies that these outsiders are witnesses to Jesus and they clearly aren't when you are including material from hundreds of years later.

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