Is it possible for people, and even for a whole society, to lose faith in God? ... [If] it happens, [it is] not primarily because something they used to think existed does not after all exist, but because the available language about God has been allowed to become too narrow, stale and spiritually obsolete ... the work of creative religious personalities is continually to enrich, to enlarge and sometimes to purge the available stock of religious symbols and idioms ... (The Sea of Faith, 1984)



... people of different periods and cultures differ very widely; in some cases so widely that accounts of the nature and relations of God, men and the world put forward in one culture may be unacceptable, as they stand, in a different culture ... a situation of this sort has arisen ... at about the end of the eighteenth century a cultural revolution of such proportions broke out that it separates our age sharply from all ages that went before (The Use and Abuse of the Bible, 1976)

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An Historical Jesus

Christianity is an historical faith. That is, it's traditionally based on a real person, who actually lived and about whom we know certain things. The links below may help readers get perspective on a Jesus of history.

If faith is enough, why bother with an historical Jesus? 
Read A Jesus of History.

A number of short essays written about the Background to the Gospels might help fill in some gaps.

To learn something of how external evidence affects an historical Jesus, read about Josephus and Josephus on Jesus.

The current position in our search for a Jesus of history is summarised in Where We Are Today.

The Historical Jesus Theories page on the Early Christian Writings website provides a decent overview of the many approaches to a Jesus of history.

The Historical Jesus Puzzle is a clear and not-too-detailed article by Professor William Loader.