Did the Earliest Christians Think Jesus Was an Angel? A Response to Bart Ehrman (Part 2)

Note:  This is the second installment of a series of blog posts reviewing Bart Ehrman’s new book, How Jesus Became God–The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee (HarperOne, 2014). For the prior post see here.

Ehrman’s core argument is that Jesus was a mere man who gradually, over time, came to be regarded as more and more divine, until he was ultimately (in the fourth century) regarded as the God of the universe.  He states, “It will become clear in the following chapters that Jesus was not originally considered to be God in any sense at all, and that he eventually became divine for his followers in some …

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Talking Bart Erhman Tonight with Greg Koukl on Stand to Reason

There has been a lot of buzz about Bart Ehrman’s latest volume, How Jesus Became God (HarperOne, 2014).  Ehrman tackles the issue of early Christology, in particular how early Christians came to regard Jesus as divine.

Not surprisingly, Erhman rejects the traditional Christian view on the subject, namely that Jesus was regarded as God because he claimed to be God and was, in fact, God.  Ehrman offers an alternative thesis:

It will become clear in the following chapters that Jesus was not originally considered to be God in any sense at all, and that he eventually became divine for his followers in some sense before he came to be thought

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How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God?

Recently I have been doing some work on the Gospel of John and first-century Jewish monotheism.  Anyone who explores the high Christology in John is forced to ask how it would have (or could have) emerged within a monotheistic context.  How could early Jews have believed in the one true God of Israel, and also have believed that Jesus was divine?

There are many scholarly works that prove helpful in this discussion, but one of the best is the collection of essays by my doktorvater, Larry Hurtado, in his wonderful book, How on Earth Did Jesus Become God? (Eerdmans, 2005).