Forged: Writing in the Name of God–Why the Bible’s Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are

Bart D. Ehrman, the New York Times bestselling author of Jesus, Interrupted and God’s Problem reveals which books in the Bible’s New Testament were not passed down by Jesus’s disciples, but were instead forged by other hands—and why this centuries-hidden scandal is far more significant than many scholars are willing to admit. A controversial work of historical reporting in the tradition of Elaine Pagels, Marcus Borg, and John Dominic Crossan, Ehrman’s Forged delivers a stunning explication of one of the most substantial—yet least discussed—problems confronting the world of biblical scholarship.

Book Description

It is often said, even by critical scholars who should know better, that “writing in the name of another” was widely accepted in antiquity. But New York Timesbestselling author Bart D. Ehrman dares to call it what it was: literary forgery, a practice that was as scandalous then as it is today. In Forged, Ehrman’s fresh and original research takes readers back to the ancient world, where forgeries were used as weapons by unknown authors to fend off attacks to their faith and establish their church. So, if many of the books in the Bible were not in fact written by Jesus’s inner circle—but by writers living decades later, with differing agendas in rival communities—what does that do to the authority of Scripture?

Ehrman investigates ancient sources to:

  • Reveal which New Testament books were outright forgeries.
  • Explain how widely forgery was practiced by early Christian writers—and how strongly it was condemned in the ancient world as fraudulent and illicit.
  • Expose the deception in the history of the Christian religion.

Ehrman’s fascinating story of fraud and deceit is essential reading for anyone interested in the truth about the Bible and the dubious origins of Christianity’s sacred texts.

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