James McGrath writes:
He points out, as he does in his book, that Jesus in the Gospels is depicted using motifs and echoes from literature about earlier royal figures. It is hard to imagine that anyone could make a claim to kingship in a Jewish context without doing so. And so it is not clear why anyone thinks that the points in Thompson’s book have any bearing on the historicity of Jesus.
But James, you need to read it all. Because Thomas’ book has no bearing on historicity. And he even makes that abundantly clear:
Bart Ehrman has recently dismissed what he calls mythicist scholarship, my Messiah Myth from 2005 among them, as anti-religious motivated denials of a historical Jesus and has attributed to my book arguments and principles which I had never presented, certainly not that Jesus had never existed. Rather than dealing with the historicity of the figure of Jesus, my book had argued a considerably different issue, which, however, might well raise problems for many American New Testament scholars who historicize what was better understood as allegorical. Rather than a book on historicity, my The Messiah Myth offered an analysis of the thematic elements and motifs of a particular myth, which had a history of at least 2000 years.
That is the point; evidence that Ehrman, and apparently now James McGrath, have not read Thompson’s The Messiah Myth. Had they read it, they would know that his book does not address such a question. So again, we have scholars who would rather spend time attacking strawmen than the actual issues.