H. Detering confronts R. Carrier—Pt. 3

Paul, Mark, and other substitutions: Richard Carrier on The Fabricated Paul by Dr. Hermann Detering Edited and translated by René Salm   Division theories Finally, Carrier broaches an important view—one that many New Testament scholars discuss with self-assurance but for which they rarely give substantiation. On the basis of internal contradictions in the seven alleged authentic epistles, even conservative scholars have long adopted various ‘division theories’ whereby larger epistles are composed of several smaller ones. While they gladly assert the existence of a ‘stable common basis’ consisting of seven authentic epistles, they somehow argue the existence of a corpus consisting of more than seven epistles (thus, J. Becker). For example, most scholars today consider that Philippians consists of three authentic … Continue reading

H. Detering confronts R. Carrier—Pt. 2

Paul, Mark, and other substitutions: Richard Carrier on The Fabricated Paul by Dr. Hermann Detering Edited and translated by René Salm   I’ve long wondered that Carrier’s responses to higher critical positions give the impression of having been formed through acquaintance at second hand, as would be the case were his learning gained through casual discussions or even hearsay. He routinely (and maddeningly) simply does not substantiate his claims. In any case, what he has to offer regarding higher criticism is usually incorrect. One telling example is his failure to distinguish between the authenticity of the Pauline epistles and the historicity of the Apostle. Carrier treats the two issues as one, seeming quite unaware that the majority of the Dutch … Continue reading

H. Detering confronts R. Carrier—Pt. 1

Paul, Mark, and other substitutions: Richard Carrier on The Fabricated Paul by Dr. Hermann Detering Edited and translated by René Salm For some time now friends have asked me to respond to a certain blog entry by Dr. Richard Carrier, one entitled “The Historicity of Paul the Apostle” (dated June 6, 2015), in which the author expresses himself regarding my book The Fabricated Paul. My response has been delayed due to more pressing work, and also to my natural aversion towards engaging in a confrontation that includes a degree of unpleasantness. Being reminded by some, however, that Carrier’s statements cannot go without rebuttal, I have now acquiesced to the task. From the natural philosophy of the Early Roman Empire to … Continue reading

Is the Caesarea inscription a forgery?

I will soon be uploading to this website/blog an article on the Caesarea inscription which was published in the 2010 Cahier of the Cercle Ernest Renan, a forward-looking association which has, through the years, promoted cutting edge research into Christian origins, including original work by Ory, Couchoud, Loisy, and Guignebert. Enrico Tuccinardi, the article’s author, and myself have been in communication for the last several weeks. With his permission I have translated his article from French into English and in a few days will begin publishing it on this blog in a series of posts. After uploading the final segment, I will also make the English version available in a single PDF.   You may be aware that the Caesarea … Continue reading

Just a Head’s Up: The Salm-Carrier exchange (May 1-2, 2013)

I feel compelled to defend myself against a cavalier and condescending review by Richard Carrier on his blog. The review deals with the recently published book, Bart Ehrman and the Quest of the Historical Jesus of Nazareth, a collection of contributions from leading Jesus mythicists—including myself and Richard Carrier. Several bloggers have quickly commented, including Neil Godfrey who refers to Carrier’s “Salm-bashing.” Indeed, I find Carrier’s review unprofessional and unjustifiably offensive towards me (“One of the worst contributions is by Salm”…“disorganized argumentation against Nazareth”…“many errors of logic”…). But the main problem is not my work—over which I have no reservations—but Carrier’s penchant to throw stones without taking better aim. In fact (and this rather surprises me), he doesn’t seem to … Continue reading