Scholars have a solid basis for believing that Jesus existed. Regarding the references made by first- and second-century historians to Jesus and the early Christians, the Encyclopædia Britannica, 2002 Edition, says: “
These independent accounts prove that in ancient times even the opponents of Christianity never doubted the historicity of Jesus, which was disputed for the first time and on inadequate grounds at the end of the 18th, during the 19th, and at the beginning of the 20th centuries.”
In 2006, the book Jesus and Archaeology said: “
No reputable scholar today questions that a Jew named Jesus son of Joseph lived; most readily admit that we now know a considerable amount about his actions and his basic teachings.”
The Bible portrays Jesus as a real person. It provides the names of his ancestors and immediate family. (Matthew 1:1; 13:55) It also gives the names of prominent rulers who were contemporaries of Jesus. (Luke 3:1, 2) Those details allow researchers to verify the accuracy of the Bible accounts.