Even if there are nuggets of history buried here and there, the gospels do not qualify as history because: (a) they are totally unsupported by contemporary documentation; (b) they were created by unidentified authors decades after the depicted events; (c) we have no clue what their sources were; (d) there are clearly many themes and elements borrowed/stolen from pagan religions. I could go on, but you get the picture. Even devout scholars hem and haw about the quotient of history in the gospels, but nonetheless manage to come up with justifications for still believing in Jesus,
The churches have failed utterly — and intentionally — to report these finding to the folks in the pews. The laity remains in the dark about the monumental labors of Bible scholars — and their discovery that the gospels fall outside the realm of history.
Yep. There are many fine popularizers of Biblical research right now: John Spong, Bart Ehrman, Jonathan Kirsch, Elaine Pagels, and their books are well worth reading. You don’t have to be a Biblical scholar to have access to the research, or to understand it, and it is dispositive: Christianity is not true. Settled; there is no educated, intellectually serious dispute about it.
So happens that I operated a used bookstore literally across the street from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary for about two years, and I have an almost complete set of the textbooks then in use. Even any bright seminarian knows the Bible is full of bullshit — which doesn’t stop them from standing in their pulpits and howling and bellowing that the Bible is inerrant and totally true and God wants this and is pissed-off by that and on and on.
The clergy are the most intellectually corrupt class of men in society, and now their lies and manipulations are not concerned merely with fleecing gullible fools — who, after all, are always going to be fleeced by somebody — but are an existential threat to the country itself.