In 2003 Niels-Peter Lemche posted a blunt article addressing the unscholarly tactics of conservative scholars. He noted how even historical-critical scholars had come to resort to the same polemics as conservatives in their efforts to “crush so-called ‘radical’ critical scholarship.”
There may be a number of explanations for this strange fact. One may be that the majority of critical scholars originate within a religious milieu and at the bottom of their hearts are conservatives without probably realizing this. Thus, critical scholarship represents a kind of breaking away from one’s own background. The changing attitude towards even more critical scholars questioning, e.g., the very existence of King David, may have to do with the fear of totally losing the tradition-after all Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem so the new David could be born there! Somehow there seem to be questions that we are not allowed to ask.
The above is cited from Niels Peter Lemche’s 2003 post, Conservative Scholarship-Critical Scholarship: Or How Did We Get Caught by This Bogus Discussion on Bible and Interpretation.
Surely we find the same motives for these same tactics among those biblical scholars who are most vociferous in their polemics against the very idea of questioning the existence of Jesus Christ, also.
I quote sections from Lemche’s article here that look very like the same sized shoe that fits the reactions of biblical scholars against Christ-mythicism. Continue reading “The Tactics of Conservative Scholarship (according to J. Barr & N-P. Lemche)”