Dr Pitre notes that there are many ancient copies of the Gospels and none of them remotely suggests anonymous sources. Common sense suggests that if they were going to make the names of authors up, they could have gone for better names than Mark or Luke: Peter or Paul, for instance. Perhaps more controversially, he suggests that the Gospels were written before AD 70 as no mention is made of the destruction of the Temple.
Did Jesus claim to be God? He clearly does according to the Gospel of John. Dr Pitre shows that this is also true of the Synoptic Gospels as found in the typically Jewish manner of language that Jesus adopts when claiming divinity. The "I Am" sayings of John are also examined. When we read the Gospels in context, we can have no doubts about the claims of Jesus.
Dr Pitre makes some wonderful observations about Temple Christology, that is, Jesus as the new Temple. For example, blood and water flowing from the side of Jesus reminds us of the blood and water flowing from the side of the Temple. And the Temple is the dwelling place of God on earth.
Dr Pitre argues that reading the Book of Jonah in Hebrew enhances its parallel allusions to the death and resurrection of Jesus. Also discussed are the Messianic prophecies found in the Book of Daniel. The Old Testament is saturated with New Testament allusions: God stilling the storm and treading on the waters reminds us of the nature miracles of Jesus.
We are told by liberal scholars that the Gospels are not biographies. They may not be biographies as understood now, but they most certainly are biographies typical of that period.
Dr Pitre cites the ex-Christian Bart Ehrman's claim that the accounts of Jesus as found in the Gospels are obtained in the same way that information is gleaned in the children's game of Telephone: Chinese whispers, more or less. This tells us more about Ehrman's loss of faith than anything akin to serious scholarship. The liberal scholars claim that the so-called Gospel communities had their particular agenda. Dr Pitre argues that it is the liberal scholars who have an agenda.
This book is easy to read and is for the general reader. Dr Pitre gives us good reasons to believe that the Gospels are reliable and are first century biographies, written while some of the apostles were alive and are based on eye-witness testimony.