After a month in Israel, I am back in the USA for two weeks before heading to Asia for three weeks. The IBR Jesus Group has wrapped up its work with long, careful discussion of historical method and Jesus studies, as well as a careful look at some key resurrection accounts. We have eight shows that are in the works, based on our labors (see the last few posts above). Our work is done, but the production team now must transcribe, edit and finalize the programs. Much of the fiming is of us on site, discussing the events in question in groups of three (or in one case with the entire group). This dialogue format we hope will make the issues more engaging than simply having a talking head. It has been a marvelous epxerience to film at these sites and discuss what makes Jesus such a fascinating topic of study. Thanks goes to bible.org, Search Ministries and Day of Discovery for undertaking and underwriting the project. The work should be completed for airing sometime in 2009 (probably in the latter part of that year). Others in the group may also blog about their experience on primetimejesus.com The show and our own work assumes someone is merely interested in knowing about Jesus. It also is designed to show how a coherent understanding of Jesus can emerge while using these kind of rigorous standards. It plays the game by the criteria Jesus scholars regularly use to get to its conclusions. It does not claim to demonstrate everything Scripture offers (who can corroborate accounts that are singly attested by such a standard?). However, it will suggest and argue there is much that we can know about Jesus as a historical figure without requiring one adopt all the suppositions that someone in church might have. It argues many events can gain such corrboration. In fact, a persuasive case can be made for a key series of Jesus' activities in a way that makes sense of what he did and presents who he is (once one appreciates the cultural backdrop in which it took place.) In fact, we think the scope of the results are important, even significant, given the standards adopted. Viewed from this angle, the show should have much to offer everyone. At least, that is our hope. It might even suggest how to have conversations about Jesus with folks who have a different starting point.
Back in the USA June 14.08