It is often said, even by critical scholars whoshould know better, that “writing in the nameof another” was widely accepted in antiquity.But New York Times bestselling author Bart D.Ehrman dares to call it what it was: literaryforgery, a practice that was as scandalous then as itis today. In Forged, Ehrman’s fresh and originalresearch takes readers back to the ancient world,where forgeries were used as weapons by unknownauthors to fend off attacks to their faith andestablish their church. So, if many of the books inthe Bible were not in fact written by Jesus’s innercircle—but by writers living decades later, withdiffering agendas in rival communities—whatdoes that do to the authority of Scripture?
Ehrman investigates ancient sources to:
- Reveal which New Testament books wereoutright forgeries.
- Explain how widely forgery was practiced byearly Christian writers—and how strongly it wascondemned in the ancient world as fraudulentand illicit.
- Expose the deception in the history of theChristian religion.
Ehrman’s fascinating story of fraud and deceit isessential reading for anyone interested in the truthabout the Bible and the dubious origins ofChristianity’s sacred texts.
Topics: The Bible, Gospel, Rivals, War, Cynical, Provocative, Philosophical, Literary Criticism, and Essays
Overall I also found the book poorly structured. The material is arranged categorically by reputed author. So Peter's biblical epistles are in the same chapter with gnostic documents from centuries later, etc. This really confuses the issue and combines material written across hundreds of years for very different purposes.
The purpose of this book would seem to be cast aspersion on the New Testament by demonstrating that its authors knowingly 'forged'='lied' by using someone else's name in order to convince others that their view of the Truth was the right one. I think a better title for this book would be "Forged: Writing in the Name of an Apostle - Why It is Always Wrong to Use Someone's Name, Even if We Think It's for a Good Cause."read more