The Historical Christ and the Jesus of Faith: The Incarnational Narrative as History

The Historical Christ and the Jesus of Faith: The Incarnational Narrative as History

by C. Stephen Evans
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

The story of Jesus of Nazareth, as recounted in the New Testament, has always been understood by the church to be historically true. It is an account of the life, death, and resurrection of a real person, whose links with history are firmly signalled in the creeds of the early church, which affirm that Jesus 'suffered under Pontius Pilate'.

Yet contemporary

Overview

The story of Jesus of Nazareth, as recounted in the New Testament, has always been understood by the church to be historically true. It is an account of the life, death, and resurrection of a real person, whose links with history are firmly signalled in the creeds of the early church, which affirm that Jesus 'suffered under Pontius Pilate'.

Yet contemporary historical scholarship has, however, called into question the reliability of the church's version of this story. Can such a story be historically true? This book argues that it can. A careful look at contemporary New Testament studies, and the philosophical and literary assumptions upon which it rests, shows that this scholarship should not undermine the confidence of lay people who believe that they can know that the church's story about Jesus is true. - ;The story of Jesus of Nazareth, as recounted in the New Testament, has always been understood by the church to be historically true. It is an account of the life, death, and resurrection of a real person, whose links with history are firmly signalled in the creeds of the early church, which affirm that Jesus 'suffered under Pontius Pilate'. Contemporary historical scholarship has, however, called into question the reliability of the church's version of this story, and thereby
raised the question as to whether ordinary people can know its historical truth.
This book argues that the historicity of the story still matters, and that its religious significance cannot be captured by the category of 'non-historical myth'. The commonly drawn distinction between the Christ of faith and Jesus of history cannot be maintained. The Christ who is the object of faith must be seen as historical; the Jesus who is reconstructed by historical scholarship is always shaped by commitments of faith. A reconsideration of the Enlightenment epistemologies that
underlie much historical scholarship shows that historical knowledge of this story is still possible. Such knowledge can be inferential, based on historical evidence. A careful look at contemporary New Testament studies, and the philosophical and literary assumptions upon which it rests, shows that this
scholarship should not undermine the confidence of lay people who believe that they can know that the church's story about Jesus is true. - ;'a profound and moving defence of the need to ground the life and work of Jesus in what would be recognized by others as 'history'. Those of a basically Reformed outlook will be inclined to share Dr Evans' views ... It certainly deserves to be widely read and studied in evangelical circles, where Dr Evans' robust convictions will warm the hearts of many. He is to be congratulated for producing such an outstanding work' - Churchman

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is an interesting and intriguing book, a clear and readable account..."—Theology Today

"This is a very good book, a book to be read by any Christians who want to have an informed opinion about the implications of historical scholarship for their faith."—Books and Culture

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780191520426
Publisher:
OUP Oxford
Publication date:
04/18/1996
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
455 KB

Meet the Author

C. Stephen Evans is William Spoelhof Scholar and Professor of Philosophy at Calvin College.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >