The question of whether or not any historical figure lies behind the early Christian literary portrayals of Jesus of Nazareth has occupied a strange place in the history of New Testament scholarship. On the one hand, those who argued that Jesus is a fictional creation of the evangelists were long ostracized from both the academy and the church (two entities with multiple overlapping constituencies). On the other hand, the question at the root of mythicist project is the same that underlies much of mainstream New Testament scholarship, namely how much early Christian theological concerns have influenced the content of the canonical Gospels.This collection represents the best discussion of this issue now available. Both established and up and coming scholars from around the world address the mythicist question from a variety of different perspectives and methodologies.
And indeed, apart from the strength of the individual contributions, the entire volume hangs together very well, due to its coherent organization. This well-edited and attractive volume marks an important milestone in the debate concerning mythicism in New Testament scholarship, and it is to be hoped that others like it will follow.
It is well worth your time to read the whole thing.