Courses on Christianity by a Christ-Naysayer

There are a lot of book authors arguing in favor of the divinity of Christ and authenticity of the Gospels. There don’t see to be many authors, however, who’ve made a name for themselves arguing against those assertions. One such author, though, is UNC-Chapel Hill professor Bart D. Ehrman. It seems whenever anyone wants to challenge a Christian apologist, or hold a debate between a Christian apologist and a contrary spokesperson, they turn to Dr. Ehrman. (Is there no one else to whom they can turn? Are the arguments against the authenticity of the Gospels so weak that so few researchers are prepared to defend that position?)

You may be familiar with The Great Courses – the audio lecture series with hundreds of courses in a variety of disciplines, presented by prominent professors. The Great Courses has several courses on Christianity, including History of the Bible, How Jesus Became God, A History of Early Christianity, Historical Jesus, The Greatest Controversies of Early Christian History, and The Writings of the Apostolic Fathers.

Those constitute a large portion if not the majority of their courses on Christianity. And guess who’s the lecturer for all of the aforementioned courses: yep, none other than Bart Ehrman.

To be sure, The Great Courses has another course relating to Christianity, The History of the Catholic Church, taught by a professor who’s a Catholic himself. So they aren’t all religion-bashers there.

But Dr. Ehrman certainly is. Calling himself both an atheist and agnostic, he’s produced voluminous literature arguing against the divinity of Christ and authenticity of the Gospels. The Freedom from Religion Foundation even presented him with their Emperor Has No Clothes award last year. See here and here.

It’s obvious that this is a man with an axe to grind.

A less controversial lecturer would be preferred – at the very least someone who is coy about whether or not he or she believes in the divinity of Christ.

In their bio of him, it behooves The Great Courses to add that among Dr. Ehrman’s awards is the above-mentioned one from the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

Update: Having listened to Ehrman’s History of Early Christianity, it turns out that his presentation was more objective than I had expected. In any case, his FFRF association should still be in his bio.

 

 

Comments

  1. The difference between religious education and theology is belief. A school cannot call a course religious education if the professor is biased by being an adherent of the same religion. This is the standard for colleges and universities worldwide.

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