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Quest for Historical Jesus

In: Religion Topics

Submitted By fiercenana1959
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Christology
Quest For Historical Jesus There have been three modern quests for the historical Jesus influenced by the 27 books of the New Testament, especially the Gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, since the first century C.E. The first quest began with the Enlightenment movement, which began as a result of increased value placed on individual thought and discovery, questioning of the truthfulness of the Bible and other church doctrines, and distinguishing the actual historical Jesus from the interpretations of Jesus that mixed small portions of history with greater amounts of theology. Hermann S. Reimarus was one of the first scholars to identify discrepancies. After his death philosopher Gotthold Lessing published Reimarus’ claim that Jesus was a Jewish reformer that encouraged Israel to replace Rome with the kingdom of God. After Jesus’ death the disciples presented him as a divine Savior, resurrected from death. Reimarus believed the disciples committed fraud; however David Strauss believed their writings to be mythological communication. These myths alone were not valuable, but were valuable in communicating religious truths. The second quest for the historical Jesus was initiated by Ernst Kasemann in 1953, as a reaction to Rudolf Bultmann’s rejection of the original quest. Bultmann dominated debates in the middle decades of the twentieth century. He was a Lutheran and helped move theology into the age of dialectical theology, where God was thought of as apart from the world. Bultmann believed Christians did not need to find the historical Jesus. Instead the faith proclaimed, (kerygma), about Jesus would be discovered by demythologizing the New Testament. “Bultmann insisted We can only accept the mythical world picture or completely reject it. He contends that the mythic picture of the New Testament will be done away with as...

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