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Put Jesus To A Vote

September 1, 2010
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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.

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Not comfortable with the teachings of Jesus? No problem, there’s a solution for that. All you have to do is gather up a bunch of people who agree with you, give the impression you are representing the majority of New Testament scholarship, and in good ‘ole American fashion put Jesus to a vote……..with colored beads of course. Here’s to the 25th anniversary of American theology at its worst. Cheers.
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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Josh permalink
    September 1, 2010 4:31 pm

    “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.”

    “Guys, we had an effect, I promise! The stuff we did wasn’t largely meaningless and just capitalizing on the current direction of society in questioning traditional religious truths!”

    I think it had a lot less of an effect than they think it did. When it first started Fundamentalists spoke out against it but after a while it was just “Oh, those guys again? Okay.” And I’d seriously doubt how much they changed people’s views on some of the things they discussed. More liberal Christians would have questioned those things anyway, and are still doing so today. I think the Jesus Seminar was news just because it was a curiosity.

  2. Cristyn permalink
    March 21, 2011 12:29 pm

    weren’t the books of the biblical canon voted on?

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