1/ We believe Jesus was a real flesh and blood person who lived in the Jewish community of first century Palestine.
He was not a myth as writers like Freke and Gandy (i) or Wells (ii) like to think. I go with Ehrman on this one. (iii) He seems pretty irrefutable to me. It surprised me that Ehrman could say that no reputable theologian has ever imagined that Jesus might not have been real.
It’s just sad how big a gap there is between two groups of people absorbed in the same topic. I mean the atheists and the theologians: many if not most of the atheists think J. is a myth, and some of them spend as much time studying the bible as any believer.
Of course I could be wrong – maybe JC is a myth. The point is would it make any difference?
His essence is Judaism, and unless you have at least an inkling of what that faith was like 2000 years ago in the eastern Mediterranean, you’ll never “get” Jesus. Although Zingcreed proritizes the gospels over the Epistles and the Hebrew (Old) Testament, that does NOT mean we think they can be ignored. We all owe a lot to Geza Vermes for his marvellous accounts of that time . They clarify Jesus’ context and mindset so much.(iv)
(i) Freke, T., Gandy, P. “The Jesus Mysteries” Element (1999)
(ii) Wells, G.A. “Did Jesus Exist?” Pemberton (1975)
(iii) Ehrman, B.D. “Did Jesus Exist?” HarperOne (2012)
(iv) Vermes, Geza – any book