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Publisher's Summary

Picking up where Bible expert Bart Ehrman's New York Times best seller, Misquoting Jesus, left off, Jesus, Interrupted addresses the larger issue of what the New Testament actually teaches...and it's not what most people think. Here Ehrman reveals what scholars have unearthed:

  • The authors of the New Testament have diverging views about who Jesus was and how salvation works.
  • The New Testament contains books that were forged in the names of the apostles by Christian writers who lived decades later.
  • Jesus, Paul, Matthew, and John all represented fundamentally different religions.
  • Established Christian doctrines, such as the suffering messiah, the divinity of Jesus, and the trinity were the inventions of still later theologians.

    These are not idiosyncratic perspectives of just one modern scholar. As Ehrman skillfully demonstrates, they have been the standard and widespread views of critical scholars across a full spectrum of denominations and traditions. Why is it most people have never heard such things?

    This is the book that pastors, educators, and anyone interested in the Bible have been waiting for, a clear and compelling account of the central challenges we face when attempting to reconstruct the life and message of Jesus.

  • ©2009 Bart D. Ehrman (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers

    What listeners say about Jesus, Interrupted

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    Stuff I never heard when I was religious! Wow...

    Short time to type here, but wow, this was interesting. Think I'm going to buy the print edition too, for all the references. SO many contradictions I never was taught when I was a Christian. The most basic questions like "What day did Jesus die?"... The gospels can't even get THAT right. Mark? Day before passover. John? Passover day. I think this book lends itself best to someone who is on the way out of religion, and feel curious about things your church hasn't taught you. I don't see how you come away from this still holding to the dogmatic view that the book is the infallible mouth breathed word of God. It's not.

    1 person found this helpful

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    • Doc
    • 2018-12-28

    Classic Ehrman!

    A concise summary on the historicity of JC and the theological journey of the author.

    1 person found this helpful

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    excellent, realistic and impeccably researched...

    ... by Bart Herman, an expert in biblical, especially New Testament studies. I'm an atheist solely because of rationality and reason so it did me good to hear that his break from faith had everything to do with simply understanding the christian bible "[historically rather than devotionally]", and by not moralizing every concept, every word, or assigning universal meaning and truths to both, as most christians are wont to do. Ehrman cites many, if not all, of the discrepancies and contradictions in the bible which completely discredit the entire canonization.The bible needs to be appreciated for what it is - a great work of literature and a record of myths - fantastical myths, horrible myths and even worse characters, especially the "one and only God" character. Ehrman tells of how and why he began to understand the bible, and how it should be understood, in its entirety, as a product of its era. The narrator is clear and does not overly dramatize. A fairly easy listen. I give it 5s all the way across. The book "Zealot" by Reza Aslan, is another reader/listener friendly book about this subject - the lives and times in which the books of the bible were recorded are direct by-products of the socio-economic milieu in which they were written down from many generations of an oral story-telling tradition.

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      5 out of 5 stars
    • Paul
    • 2010-06-27

    Excellent book

    As a Christian believer (albeit open minded) I found this book fascinating. It certainly has caused me to look differently and more deeply and the new testament gospels that we all tend to accept blindly. It has actually deepened (not threatened) my faith. Thank you Prof. Ehrman, I only wish I had taken your classes while at UNC.

    24 people found this helpful

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    • Michael D. Fleetwood
    • 2012-03-20

    Only 1 part: The book is only 6 hours long.

    Any additional comments?

    The book was very enjoyable: a nice account of the New Testament from an historical perspective.
    My complaint is that the book is only 6 hours. It is listed as 12 hours and divided into two parts. If you download both parts, you just downloaded the same book twice. It's a good listen, just limit your expectations to 6 hours (not 12 hours!).

    6 people found this helpful

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    • OpenMindedNotCredulous
    • 2009-12-30

    Perfect balance of plain language and scholarship

    This is the most approachable critical historical look at Jesus and the New Testament that I've yet read. This book should be mandatory reading for everyone, both believers and non-believers, who holds a strong opinion regarding Christianity. It certainly won't turn a non-believer into a believer. It's unlikely to turn a believer into a non-believer. But it is likely to make both sides take less extreme stances regarding the role of Christianity (especially those of the American Evangelical persuasion) in todays society.

    29 people found this helpful

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    • R. Reed
    • 2009-04-09

    Take a college course in New Testament in a book

    I teach "Introduction to the New Testament" in a Public University in North Carolina. This is without a doubt the best introduction to the New Testament that is currently available. The book is accessible but always scholarly. I assume Ehrman has taken his notes from his New Testament class and expanded them into a book, because this is precisely the material one would get in a New Testament class at a University. Evangelicals will find the material challenging, but Ehrman (a former evangelical himself) works hard to show the evidence and answer the objections he knows are coming. I cannot say enough good about this book. Buy it, listen to it, and your understanding of the New Testament will be enhance and possible transformed.

    55 people found this helpful

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    • Sparkie
    • 2009-07-04

    A Seminary in a Book

    An incredible book that will let you see what is taught in mainline Seminaries and Divinity schools throughout the western world... much of it you'll probably never learn about in church, even though your pastor knows many of these facts... It's like a seminary in a book and will add a whole new dimension to your reading of the most significant book in the western world. It teaches a critical historic review of the New Testament rather then what most people know which is just a devotional read of the Bible. I first listened to on audible and like it so well bought a couple copies here for me and other more progressive friends.

    25 people found this helpful

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    • Darwin8u
    • 2012-06-11

    Ehrman = Engaging/Challenging + a Tad Pedantic

    This book seems to fit in between 'Misquoting Jesus' and 'God's Problem'. I didn't find it as intellectually satisfying as 'Misquoting Jesus' and I didn't find it as doctrinally challenging as 'God's Problem'. While I appreciate Ehrman's desire to translate Biblical scholarship for the lay reader, 'Jesus, Interrupted' just seemed over-organized but also underwrought. At his best Ehrman is engaging and challenging. At his worst, Ehrman's prose jumps between pedantic and overly simplistic. His central premise on the need to read the Bible from a historical perspective and not just a doctrinal perspective already had significant purchase in me, so perhaps, I was just hoping 'Jesus, Interrupted' would wow me just a little more.

    20 people found this helpful

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    • G-Man
    • 2009-03-07

    Unbiased/Informative

    Less academic than Misquoting Jesus, therefore more listenable, this is another Bart D. Ehrman look into the early Christian Faith/Jesus Movement. I learned nothing about the bible from Christian evangelical radio, so I am glad to get another audiobook that is very well informed.
    If you want to learn about early Christianity without the proselytizing this book presents an explanation/examination of the famed discrepancies of the gospels; very intriguing.

    45 people found this helpful

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    • Nancy Powers
    • 2009-06-03

    Good info. but hard to get through

    The book really does have some good information on the historical New Testament. I am taking on faith that Mr. Ehrman is truly the scholar he says he is, and that his historical data does, in fact, reflect the information one would receive at a university when studying the topic. My problem with the material is that the dissemination of this historical information is only about half of the book. The other half is repeating, ad nauseam, the information presented, combined with a rather self-aggrandizing account of the author, his life, and his beliefs (which are also repeated many times). I kept finding myself wanting to shout "you said that already, at least twice, move on!" every 10 minutes or so. He really needed a better editor to cut out all the noise and help him stick to the topic, which would in turn have alleviated some of the need for him to constantly mention that he didn't have the space to go into each topic in more detail.

    30 people found this helpful

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    • Richard
    • 2018-07-20

    Useful Information

    This book is packed with useful information. I highly recommend reading this book ecspecially if all you've ever known is what you've been told from the pew.

    2 people found this helpful

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      4 out of 5 stars
    • Chi-Hung
    • 2009-04-15

    Wonderful

    I debated whether to give this book 4 or 5 stars, I love and admire his work, this volume should really be read as a supplement to Misquoting Jesus, however compared to Misquoting Jesus, this book is less subject focused, i.e it went from a book about textual discripency to biblical history to religious ethics to personal experience. I agree with the sentiment and historical approach to religion, I still wish this volume provide more scholarly and academic information than it does, maybe I am too greedy. I remain the author's most loyal fan and disciple.

    8 people found this helpful