That Second Question Frank Zindler Wanted to Ask Bart Ehrman

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by Neil Godfrey

zindlerWhen the Ehrman/Price Debate sponsored by Milwaukee Mythicists was opened up to questions from the audience Frank Zindler was the first to speak. He had two questions but the rules allowed him time to only ask one. Much of the audience, so I have heard and as seemed quite apparent to me from the video, was quite taken aback by Bart Ehrman’s hostile dismissal of his first question. Frank asked Bart if he had read the book published in critical response to his Did Jesus Exist? since he had given no indication in the debate that he was aware of its criticisms of the arguments he had just repeated. Ehrman brusquely replied that he had read it, “twice”, but that he disagreed with everything it said and he would not respond.

So much for Frank’s first question. Here from Frank Zindler is that second question that he had hoped to ask Bart Ehrman:

Bart, many of us have used your research to support many of our own arguments. For example, in Orthodox Corruption of Scripture you show many examples of anti-Docetic passages in the NT, from the “born-of-woman” Gal 4:4 to the antichrist verses of 1-2 John. Galatians is usually dated to ~54 CE, and if Jesus ever existed, he died in 30 or 33 CE (although Irenaeus claimed he lived into the reign of Claudius, that ended in 54 CE—the very year in which Galatians was written!)

As you know, there are no manuscript variants lacking the born-of-woman gynaikos of Gal 4:4. You have criticized me for claiming interpolation in cases where manuscript evidence is lacking. So……….

According to you own method, the anti-Docetic Gal 4:4 is not an interpolation; it dates to 54 CE if the traditional dating be correct.


If Jesus died in 33 CE, how is it possible that just 21 years later—or even in the very year Galatians was written—there could be widespread forms of Christianity that denied that Jesus had had a body? Was not some form of Docetism therefore the earliest form of Christianity?


Other posts discussing Galatians 4:4 — including from a range of scholarly perspectives — are archived at:

The “Born of a Woman” / Galatians 4:4 INDEX

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Neil Godfrey

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7 thoughts on “That Second Question Frank Zindler Wanted to Ask Bart Ehrman”

  1. Considering how much Ehrman dumped on Zindler’s question, I wonder what his response would have been if Carrier asked a question; probably **** off” lol.
    For a scholar with such an international reputation to ignore other scholars like that after he told blatant lies about them and plain got his facts wrong, is just disgraceful; shame on him.

  2. Bart Ehrman has inadvertently ruined his own credibility with his book, “Did Jesus Exist” and it has exposed New Testament studies for what it really is, a joke. Why on earth would mythicists ever look towards NT scholars to acknowledge the existence of the case for mythicism when they admit they know nothing about it?:

    “Writing Did Jesus Exist was an interesting task. For one thing, before writing the book, like most New Testament scholars, I knew almost nothing about the mythicist movement.”

    – Dr. Bart Ehrman

    “Bart Ehrman also confesses on page two in his book, “Did Jesus Exist?,” that for 30 years he never even thought to consider to question the existence of Jesus as real historical character because it was a question that he “did not take seriously.” Bart goes on to say, “I discovered, to my surprise, an entire body of literature devoted to the question of whether or not there ever was a real man, Jesus … I was almost completely unaware – as are most of my colleagues in the field – of this body of skeptical literature.”

    “Thank you, Bart Ehrman, for admitting that you knew nothing about mythicism before you started writing your book, ‘Did Jesus Exist?’; having read DJE I can confirm that you STILL know nothing about it. So, he’s admitting that he was ignorant, as are most of his colleagues, of what is an “entire body of literature” in his field.”

    Here’s what Dr. Robert Price had to say about this issue regarding Bart Ehrman’s attacks on Acharya S / Murdock:

    “Such libel only reveals a total disinclination to do a fraction of the research manifest on any singe page of Acharya’s works.”

    – Dr. Robert Price, page xxi of the book, ‘Bart Erhman and the Quest of the Historical Jesus of Nazareth: An Evaluation of Ehrman’s Did Jesus Exist?’

    Bart Ehrman caught in lies and libel?

    “The Mythicist case has been rebutted? Really? When did that happen? The arguments of the Mythicist camp have never been refuted – they have only been steadfastly ignored.” “…As for this tiresome business about there being “no scholar” or “no serious scholar” who advocates the Christ Myth theory: Isn’t it obvious that scholarly communities are defined by certain axioms in which grad students are trained, and that they will lose standing in those communities if they depart from those axioms? The existence of an historical Jesus is currently one of those. That should surprise no one, especially with the rightward lurch of the Society for Biblical Literature in recent years. It simply does not matter how many scholars hold a certain opinion…. ”

    – Dr. Robert Price, Biblical Scholar with two Ph.D’s


    ; )

  3. Well if there was an historical Jesus that lived and died like anybody else, how could Paul get away with proclaiming a kludge — a combination mythical-historical, actually incarnated — Jesus for so long by his reckoning, seventeen years plus, until allegedly he was finally ratted out to James and had to account for himself and then got caught bringing a goy into the Jews-only section of the Second Temple? I think Paul would have had a much more difficult time merchandising his Jesus than the Docetists would have theirs.

    And a tomb with the remains of an historical Jesus (perhaps it is another Jesus after all) raises huge problems for the whole Historical Jesus industry because it shows THEIR “historical Jesus” isn’t correct. This includes Tabor and Jacobovici, BTW because the seem to go by the NT Scholarship consensus that the Gospels contain a wealth of valuable information about this person.

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