Put Jesus To A Vote
Jesus Seminar to mark 25 years of questions about New Testament
G. JEFFREY MACDONALD, Religion News Service
SANTA ROSA, California — Since 1985, scholars affiliated with the Jesus Seminar have been casting doubt on the authenticity of sayings attributed to Jesus and questioning whether he saw himself as an end-times prophet. As the seminar marks its 25th anniversary Oct. 13-16 in Santa Rosa, California, it’s generating far less attention and controversy than in years past, when the media spotlight gave members a platform to reach millions. Now observers are debating a new question: What difference has the Jesus Seminar made? Once again, the jury is divided. Among the seminar’s 100 fellows is a strong sense that the group has effectively made the general public more aware of questions surrounding the so-called “historical Jesus.” For example: By using color-coded beads to vote on whether Jesus likely said this or that, the group captured widespread attention, said John Dominic Crossan, chair of the 25th anniversary.