Who are the most reputable Biblical scholars?
February 5, 2014 5:18 PM Subscribe
Who are the most reputable Biblical scholars, from various schools of thought (liberal, conservative, skeptical, etc.)
posted by Serene Empress Dork to Religion & Philosophy (15 answers total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
I do a fair amount of reading about Christianity, a lot of it from people with non-traditional or controversial views. Much of it is fascinating, and oftentimes I think they have a plausible theory of this or that, but then I read reviews of their book and find that critics who seem very invested in other viewpoints are ripping them to shreds.
While I am enjoying learning about alternative theories of who Jesus, Paul, James and the rest were and what they actually did/said/believed that mainstream Christianity may have gotten twisted, I'd like to not get too caught up in the theories of somebody who is generally not well respected.
I'd also like to read some conservative, orthodox views that run counter to the alternative stuff, but it seems like so many of these folks are pretty committed to the Christian mythology as written, even in the face of scholarship that suggests that certain books of the Bible were written later than generally believed, that not all of Paul's letters were written by Paul, etc.
Basically, I'd like to get a more balanced view by people who are generally well thought of. So who are these people that I should be reading?
A couple of things I've read and liked recently:
Paul and Jesus by James Tabor (one comment I read about one of his books said something like "well, Tabor is just being Tabor" in sort of an eye-rolly way as if he were a well-known crackpot)
Zealot by Reza Aslan (holy shit is this guy disliked in some circles)
Anything by Marcus Borg (I love him but he seems to be not well thought of at all by the conservative thinkers in my neck of the Episcopal church, partly because they heartily disapprove of all the liberal Episcopalians who love him)
So... who should I be reading if I want a balanced, respectable view of traditional, historical, alternative, and skeptical?
Keep in mind that I am a lay person, and while reasonably bright I don't have the background to wade through dense scholarly tomes.