Getting at Jesus: An Interview with Peter S. Williams
by Chad Gross
TB: You have recently written a book titled Getting at Jesus: A Comprehensive Critique of Neo-Atheist Nonsense about the Jesus of History (Wipf & Stock, 2019). Please tell me about the book and why you wrote it.
Williams: The so-called New Atheists are an influential propaganda movement interested in “getting at” Jesus in the sense of attacking belief in him, but they don’t put much effort into thinking about how we “get at” Jesus historically speaking. I wrote Getting at Jesus to demonstrate that thinking carefully about how we “get at” the historical Jesus shows that the New Atheists are unreliable guides on the subject.
On the one hand, neo-atheists generally claim that scientific, empirical evidence is the only way to know anything, and their attacks upon the historical Jesus center around claims to the effect that there’s insufficient evidence to support the Christian interpretation of Jesus. On the other hand, neo-atheists generally excuse themselves from an examination of the relevant historical evidence by appealing to purely philosophical objections to miracles. This is a double standard.
I counter the New Atheists’ philosophical objections to…