initial impressions of Ariel Sabar’s Veritas: a Harvard Professor, a Con Man, and the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife

Followers of this website (and contemporary media on ancient Christianity in general) may be familiar with the fiasco of the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife that transpired ca. 2012-2016. (See here.) Definitely a lot of esotericism in this story. Even following his bombshell articles in the Atlantic that settled the question of forgery once and for all (see previous link), journalist Ariel Sabar continued his research on the episode. His book telling the whole story, entitled Veritas: a Harvard Professor, a Con Man, and the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife, has just been published, and reviews of advance copies are beginning to surface.

Two colleagues with top-level training in the study of the New Testament and ancient Christianity, and who are also experienced in writing for a popular audience – Candida Moss and Brent Nongbri – have posted their first impressions of Sabar’s book. As expected, both posts are excellent reads, and they focus on different aspects of the book. I recommend them both. Here is Moss’s article at The Daily Beast, and here is Nongbri’s article at his blog, Variant Readings.

(Full disclosure: I was interviewed by Sabar when he was researching the book, but I have not had access an advance copy of it; the contents of the posts by Moss and Nongbri are news to me. Friends have told me my former ponytail puts in an appearance.)

EDIT 1 September 2020: see now the extensive, insightful, and balanced review of the book by Tony Burke (York University, Toronto) at Apocryphicity, here.