Das Testimonium Flavianum. Befunde, Diskussionsstand, Perspektiven


  • Christoph Niemand Katholische Privat-Universität Linz


Josephus’ passage on Jesus (Ant 18,3,3 § 63–64) is much disputed: authentic, interpolated, or basicly authentic with retouchings by Christian scribes? If, as a growing consensus suggests, the latter is the most plausible position, what would the original text of Josephus had looked like? How should one assess the use of this passage in the fields of Jesus research and oldest church history? This essay presents and discusses the textual evidence in manuscripts and the attestation by ecclesiastical authors. It goes on to give an overview of the possible positions in modern research and focuses on the assumption of the text being basicly authentic with some insertions by Christian scribes as proponed by John P. Meier and others. On the basis of this hypothesis there are posed some further questions that try to scout possible yields in various areas of research on Jesus, Second-Temple-Judaism, and public perception of Christianity in late 1st and early 2nd century CE.