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  • Originally published 08/05/2013

    Attack on Reza Aslan puts his Jesus book in the spotlight

    Not every scholarly study of early Christianity rockets to best-seller status thanks to an attack by a belligerent cable-network reporter.But that became the fate last week of Reza Aslan's Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth, just out from Random House in the United States while, in Britain, the Westbourne Press is rushing the book forward from its original August 18 publication date.The fortunes of Zealot offer a cautionary tale for scholars who publish on touchy subjects—or perhaps a primer on how to provoke conservative-media hostility, and then to capitalize on it, even if you're no religious or intellectual radical....

  • Originally published 04/29/2013

    Jesus and Muhammad

    Credit: Wiki Commons.Originally posted on Informed Comment.I’ve always liked Andrew Sullivan even when I disagree with him. I’m going to disagree with him, or more specifically Alexis de Tocqueville and one of his readers who quotes him:

  • Originally published 04/01/2013

    Pope Francis links Turin Shroud to Jesus Christ as cloth is shown on television for Easter

    Francis made his first remarks on the mysterious cloth since being elected Pope in a special video message as the shroud was shown live on television for only the second time in its history.His remarks came on Holy Saturday, which falls between the commemoration of Christ’s crucifixion on Good Friday and his resurrection on Easter Sunday.Francis referred to the 14ft-long strip of sepia fabric, which is imprinted with the face and body of a bearded man, as “the Holy Shroud” and asked: “How is it that the faithful, like you, pause before this icon of a man scourged and crucified? It is because the Man of the Shroud invites us to contemplate Jesus of Nazareth....

  • Originally published 03/13/2013

    Shape-shifting Jesus described in ancient Egyptian text

    A newly deciphered Egyptian text, dating back almost 1,200 years, tells part of the crucifixion story of Jesus with apocryphal plot twists, some of which have never been seen before.Written in the Coptic language, the ancient text tells of Pontius Pilate, the judge who authorized Jesus' crucifixion, having dinner with Jesus before his crucifixion and offering to sacrifice his own son in the place of Jesus. It also explains why Judas used a kiss, specifically, to betray Jesus — because Jesus had the ability to change shape, according to the text  — and it puts the day of the arrest of Jesus on Tuesday evening rather than Thursday evening, something that contravenes the Easter timeline.