The Birth of the Church: Bauer’s translator, Robert A. This approach is likely popular because it embraces an approach that has become standard in higher education: On the contrary, these books were themselves based on earlier sources that have since been lost. Baker Books, , According to him, Docetism presupposes a high Christology wherein Jesus is seen as divine.

Summarizing their evidence and argument up to this point in the book, the authors write:. Remember me on this computer. Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: Most of them [the noncanonical Gospels] are later than the canonical four. As has been mentioned earlier, Bauer demonstrates that the traditional story concerning the conversion of King Abgar V is a legend picked up by Eusebius from an unknown source, and then argues that the earliest form of Christianity found there is actually Marcion. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. So, what we did was to look at the historical evidence that Bauer presented on his terms.

I want to focus on that first one for a moment.

The Heresy of Orthodoxy: An Overview of the Bauer Thesis

Liberal scholars and historians coming after Bauer who accept this thesis have since made additions and modifications to it. This lends support to the view that orthodoxy hauer a better claim to be traceable back to Jesus than heresy, since it would make sense that those whose teachings go back to Jesus would also know more about the milieu in which Jesus lived and taught.

bauer ehrman thesis

As you know, this is often the popular narrative that is presented—that there was no such thing as uniformity among early Christians. III ppgives a bibliography of works influenced by Bauer. How Modern Scholars Distort the Gospels.

This site uses cookies. Davidson, The Birth of the Church: Moreover, some of the traditions preserved in the noncanonical Ejrman, especially in the Gospel of Thomas, and Gospel of Peter, may be much older than the books themselves, at least as old as some of the thfsis in the canonical books. Writings in support of other views were systematically destroyed.


Walter Bauer

Later proponents agree with him that orthodoxy came late into the scene, but disagree on what the earliest form of Christianity in Edessa was. Skip to main content. Also, a firmer conviction that Christianity was originally a preaching movement based on clear beliefs passed on from Christ to the apostles Lecture 1.

bauer ehrman thesis

I am well aware that many people view Christianity through the events of the Council of Nicaea or at a much later date than 70 AD. As has been mentioned earlier, Bauer demonstrates that the traditional story concerning the conversion of King Abgar V is a legend picked up by Eusebius from an unknown source, and then argues that the earliest form of Christianity found there is actually Marcion. Canonical and Noncanonical Documents The other major line of evidence that is relevant to the Bauer thesis concerns the proliferation of various early Christian documents, both orthodox and heretical, and whether any of them can be said to represent the earliest view of Christianity.

Walter Bauer – Wikipedia

Other sayings have a more Gnostic tinge, however. Give these a read. As an example, learning that heretical communities did not last longer in desert communities: Log Eurman Sign Up.

For the languages of the world are different, but the meaning of the [Christian] tradition is one and the same. Ignatius and Others as Witnesses Against Bauer.

bauer ehrman thesis

However, as critics of the Bauer thesis have pointed out, it fails to do justice to the historical circumstances behind the proliferation of these various sectarian groups. It will thus be shown that the Bauer thesis provides an imbalanced portrait of early Christianity by failing to take into account the antiquity of the New Testament bzuer which are considerably earlier than all of the non-canonical literature produced laterand by overstating the antiquity of heretical sects in most of the regions he examines.


Later in the book, we discuss things like canon and text.

The following timeline will help summarize and clarify the relationship between orthodoxy and heresy in the patristic era. This is problematic for the Bauer thesis, as it is presupposes a tradition of heretical teaching that is at least as old as 29 Ehrman, Lost Christianities, In the past two deacdes, the main proponent of it has been Bart Ehrman, who has incorporated it into many of his books, most notably in Lost Christianities The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony.

This should not be taken to mean that all liberals accept the Bauer thesis. He goes on to question the undue emphasis given to Edessa, pointing out that the evidence in that region is too ambiguous and mute, and that a region such as Asia Minor may be a more fruitful area of study.

It gives the appearance of being unbiased, yet sets the critic up as the source of unbiased truth. It was the eventual form of Christianity practiced in the 4th century that influenced the development of orthodoxy [4] and acquired the majority of converts over time. The Geography of Orthodoxy and Heresy One of the main arguments presented by Bauer in Orthodoxy and Heresy is that a geographic study of the major centres of early Christianity demonstrates in most of these centres, the earliest and most widely attested form of Christianity is not orthodoxy, but one of several competing heretical sects.

Help Center Find new research papers in: Lift up the stone, and you will find me there.