Do you enjoy inquiry and exploration?
Are you open to having aspects of your faith challenged?
If so, this study series may be right up your alley. I’m interested in knowing who might be interested in participating in a major study series in 2022 based on a video lecture course by New Testament scholar Bart D. Ehrman provocatively titled “How Jesus became God.”
“Well, that’s silly,” I hear you respond. “Jesus simply IS God!” Ehrman replies to such a response with 24 half-hour lectures, arguing persuasively that there is much more to it than to simply affirm the creedal statement, “Jesus IS God!”
Ehrman begins by setting the scene, outlining the cultural and religious world in which Jesus lived and died, a world in which the perceived separation between the human and divine was not so clear-cut as we might, in our modern understanding, assume it to be. He examines the gods who became human and the humans who became gods in the ancient world. He explores the gospel records, written some 40-70 years after his death, of what Jesus understood and said about himself (and about a figure he referred to as “The Son of Man”) and the very different understandings of Jesus that emerge from the synoptic gospels (Mark, Matthew, Luke) and the gospel of John.
Jesus once asked his disciples, “Who do people say I am?” Ehrman examines how the answer to this question changed over a period of hundreds of years, from Jesus’ own lifetime until the answer acquired creedal form at the Council of Nicaea in the fourth century.
For anyone wishing to be challenged and to deepen their own understanding of Jesus, please get in touch by email to register your interest. If there is enough interest, the intention would be to meet each week for perhaps an hour and a half, to watch one lecture and then have what I’m sure would be a most stimulating discussion.