Review of “Jesus and His World” by Craig Evans
Craig A. Evans picks up the challenge laid down by modern non-Christian scholarship by addressing a number of objections to the historicity of New Testament culture. This review refers to the ebook “Jesus and His World” by Westminster John Knox Press, ISBN: 978-0664-2341-33.
Evans’ style is appreciated, dealing squarely with evidence without appealing to pity or tradition as the basis from which he proposes his themes. And although the author addresses dissenting scholarship, it is not done so in a negative or demeaning way. This is an honest, forthright study of archeological insights into uniquely historical events that have rightly come under the scrutiny of some of the most respected Biblical critics.
An example of his scholarly integrity is seen in a chapter dealing with the supposed burial chamber of Christ and His family. Although the existence of the actual burial tomb of Jesus would arguably be a boon to Christian researchers, Evans takes a cautious route, analyzing Jewish funerary customs to show how Jacobivici and Cameron stepped too far over the edge of scholarship into a garden of unjustifiable speculation.
Evans turns the process of intensive archeological processes into a narrative that is accessible to the average person. His ability to discuss issues like Nazarene culture in the first century is simple, straightforward and compelling.
I could see every reason for including this book on the syllabus of any apologetic course, whether offered in the pew or in a post-secondary setting. Although certainly not an exhaustive examination of every cultural argument against first century Christian origins as portrayed in the New Testament canon, Evans comprehensively addresses the most speculative of contemporary sensationalistic rebuffs of the Christian faith.
I highly recommend “Jesus and His World” by Craig A. Evans. Its engagement of serious issues with sound reasoning and evidentiary based argumentation should certainly be in any investigator’s win column.