If you want to see a good example of what be-devils any scholarly analysis of practically anything to do with Jesus and early Christianity, have a read of the postings of the Canadian TV self-promoter, Simcha Jacobovici here. Jacobovici (who styles himself “the naked archaeologist” on his self-produced TV programmes, and offers no competence in anything relevant to the analysis of the fragment) notes that various scholars (particularly Coptologists and specialists in ancient Greek palaeography) have raised questions about the authenticity of the fragment (announced to the scholarly world in Prof. Karen King’s paper presented at a conference in Rome several weeks ago), and simply trashes all the scholars and queries as “sleeper agents of Christian orthodoxy”.
And then concludes
Jacobovici’s reasons for his scurrilous mis-characterization of the scholars who have raised questions about the fragment are all too transparent: He obviously seeks to promote his own TV programmes and related commercial ventures, and his oxygen is sensationalism, largely hyped by him and for his own benefit. As someone who has only reported on the on-going analysis of the fragment, I have no dog in this fight. But I do have to condemn Jacobovici’s patently self-serving rants against fellow scholars, of various personal stances, who have simply taken up Prof. King’s invitation to weigh the warrants of the fragment, and have offered reasons for hesitating to treat it (at least yet) as genuine.
I would only say that Larry’s use of ‘fellow scholars’ is overly generous since Simcha isn’t.
- What Non-Academics Think About the Coptic Fragment Just Doesn’t Matter (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- The Guardian Too Joins the ‘C-List’ Simcha Disdains, and Denounces the ‘Jesus Wife’ Fragment as Fake (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- Sad Simcha’s Statement Supporting Forgery (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)