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Historical Jesus Theories: Stevan Davies

The purpose of this web page is to explain and explore some of the theories offered up by contemporary scholars on the historical Jesus and the origins of the Christian religion. Issues include the nature of the historical Jesus, the nature of the early Christian documents, and the origins of the Christian faith in a risen Jesus Christ.

Stevan Davies

Jesus the Healer:  Buy at! Doing away with the unproductive model of the historical Jesus as a teacher, Stevan Davies proposes that spirit possession played a crucial role in earliest Christianity. The texts themselves - Acts, John, Paul - tell us as much. Davies uses current anthropological research on spirit possession in order to shed new light on the history of early Christianity. Davies speculates that Jesus developed an alternate personality as "the spirit of God," by which he expelled demons in his healings. In this way, it is possible that much of the sayings material in John and sayings like Q's "No one knows the Father but the Son" reflect a tradition of the sayings of Jesus as possessed by the spirit of God. Davies explains the origins of Christianity in theorizing that took place concerning the disassociative experiences. For the idea that Jesus was divine, it took only a simple equation of identifying Jesus with his alter-ego as the spirit of God. In this way, Davies's theory fulfills a criterion that is overlooked in many reconstructions, that of explaining the development of Christian theology from the life of the historical Jesus. For fuller commentary, see Davies's own summary linked above.

Please enjoy exploring the varied Historical Jesus Theories offered by these authors through the links below.

Jesus the Myth: Heavenly Christ

Jesus the Myth: Man of the Indefinite Past

Jesus the Hellenistic Hero

Jesus the Revolutionary

Jesus the Wisdom Sage

Jesus the Man of the Spirit

Jesus the Prophet of Social Change

Jesus the Apocalyptic Prophet

Jesus the Savior

For more information on the debate over the historical Jesus, visit the Christian Origins web site.

Go to the Chronological List of all Early Christian Writings

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Early Christian Writings is copyright © Peter Kirby <E-Mail>.

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Kirby, Peter. "Historical Jesus Theories." Early Christian Writings. <>.