As C. S. Lewis dispensed with those who say Jesus was “a good moral teacher but not Lord” so Tom Gilson dispenses with those who say that Jesus was only a legend – that Jesus never made the statements attributed to him in the Gospels. (This includes Bart Ehrman, the Jesus Seminar, and practically all of current liberal biblical scholarship.)
The essence of Tom’s point is that the figure of Jesus (a person of maximum power living in maximum love for others) is unmatched in the history of literature (fiction or non-fiction). It would take a genius to invent such a character. That he was defined in the way that “legend” believers suggest is simply not plausible. It’s an argument worthy of addition to Lewis’ trilemma (“Lord, Liar, or Lunatic”).
(17 min read; 4,224 words)
(New Testament scholar Daniel B. Wallace commends Gilson’s addition in A New Twist on the Quadrilemma: Lord, Liar, Lunatic, or Legend?)