On endemic scholarly coyness

Luke in chapters 1 and 2 of his gospel adds a birth narrative to Mark’s gospel. But as Dunn notes,

‘Here too it is sufficiently clear that it is a begetting, a becoming which is in view, the coming into existence of one who will be called, and will in fact be the Son of God, not the transition of a pre-existent being to become the soul of a human baby or the metamorphosis of a divine being into a human foetus.’

Dunn, Christology in the Making: A New Testament Inquiry into the Origins of the Doctrine of the Incarnation SCM press 2003, p. 51

In plain English then, Jesus was created by God.

Dunn, like most other scholars I have surveyed, seems shy of speaking plainly about the implications of his research, particularly when it leads him away from ‘orthodox’ positions on Christology. Bart D. Ehrman is an outstanding exception to this endemic coyness. This may explain why he receives so much ad hominem abuse from conservative Christians.

Truly he takes up his cross daily to follow in the footsteps of Jesus.




Categories: Gospels, Jesus, New Testament scholarship

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