|Challenging the Verdict - A Cross-Examination of Lee Strobel's "The Case for
Do the Gospels hold up in Court?
Following on the success of The Jesus Puzzle, my second book, Challenging the Verdict, is a direct response to a bestseller in conservative Christian apologetics. This rebuttal is a revision and expansion of my earlier website book review of the same name, complete with Index. That book review has now been superseded. To read excerpts from the book, see below.
In the face of modern critical scholarship, which is steadily eroding the historical reliability of the Gospels and their presentation of Jesus, conservative writers have been making valiant attempts to reestablish confidence in the Christian record and doctrine. The most prominent of these, in popular exposure and commercial success, has been Lee Strobel, in his 1998 book The Case for Christ.
In that book, Lee Strobel, an ex-court journalist, conducts a series of 14 interviews with well-known conservative and evangelical scholars of the New Testament, such as Craig Blomberg, William Lane Craig and Gary Habermas, in an attempt to establish the reliability of the Gospel account and the truth of the Resurrection. Within the context of a scholarly critique, I take numerous quotations from those interviews and set up my own dialogue with them, as though cross-examining Strobel and his witnesses in a courtroom before judge and jury. This makes for gripping reading, a strong atmosphere and an effective way to present the case in favor of a more rational and coherent view of the Christian record and the origins of Christianity. Challenging the Verdict exposes the deficiencies, the fallacies, the selective and misleading use of evidence inherent in The Case for Christ, and offers more reasonable alternatives.
It is not necessary to have read Strobel’s book in order to understand or derive the benefit of this critique. Challenging the Verdict is written in simple, clear, conversational language, with elements of humor and insight into logic and history. The book addresses all aspects of the Christian record: Gospels, epistles, non-canonical documents. Occasionally, I step beyond the scope of New Testament interpretation and discuss religion and rationality in general.
Challenging the Verdict provides an ideal response for those who have had Lee Strobel’s book urged upon them by friends, family members and their local clergy. Now you can offer something in return that will show why there is good reason to question the Gospels and reject their claims.
272 pages, with extensive Notes, and full, user-friendly Index. Softcover edition.
Review of "Challenging the Verdict" by
former U.S. evangelical church pastor:
From reviews on Amazon.com:
TO READ EXCERPTS FROM THE BOOK, GO TO: Challenging the Verdict on the Age of Reason Website
Challenging the Verdict is published under my own imprint, Age of Reason Publications. Visit the Age of Reason website at: ageofreason.org
Also by Earl Doherty: The Jesus Puzzle: Did Christianity Begin With a Mythical Christ?
Contents of Challenging the VerdictINTRODUCTION
PART ONE: Is the Gospel Record Reliable?
Chapter One: The Gospels and Their
PART TWO: What Was the Nature of Jesus?
Chapter Seven: Jesus’ View of Himself
PART THREE: Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?
Chapter Eleven: Suffering and Death on
INDEX OF NAMES, SUBJECTS AND BIBLICAL
The paperback version of Challenging the Verdict is available from Amazon.com