Last Days of Jesus Documentary Review
In the documentary, The Last Days of Jesus, a few well-known (thanks to the History Channel H2) liberal scholars collaborate to weave a “new” narrative about the Crucifixion based on extra-biblical sources: secular historical records, select pseudepigraphal writings, and recent archaeological discoveries.

Last Days of Jesus

Produced by Simcha Jacobovici, The Naked Archaeologist—featuring local UNC Professor James Tabor and numerous international scholars—this documentary approaches the story of Jesus from a Scripturally skeptical, yet historically intriguing, point of view.

Video CoverAlthough I do not agree with each of their conclusions (which is my right based on my own research), the documentary is saturated with excellent historical reminders and re-enactments, fantastic footage filmed throughout the Holy Land and the ancient Roman Empire, and an extra-biblical perspective on the story of Jesus. 

I rather enjoyed this documentary. As an INTJ and lifelong learner, I prefer to gather information from a variety of scholars and perspectives—especially when their views are filmed on-site in Jerusalem, Galilee, Caesarea Maritima, and Rome! I always learn something and gain interesting insights into the culture and time of Jesus and His followers. 
This is NOT a Scripture-centered approach to the Passion story, so only watch it if you’re interested in understanding how some skeptics explain the crucifixion of Jesus in first-century Judea.

The last 30-minutes of the documentary gives Jacobovici a platform to weave together a fanciful theory of the Passion based on nothing but speculation and potentially correlative events. (They only correlate provided you completely disregard the timeline presented in the Gospel accounts—most of which were written either by eyewitnesses or based on eyewitness testimony.) Jacobovici’s theory rests on the expansion of the Passion timeline: placing Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem six-months prior to Passover. In other words, “Holy Week” becomes “Holy Six-Months.” 

The Last Supper may very well be that ‘doomed’ strategy meeting where they were looking for a way out and they couldn’t find one.” Jacobovici

His theory is that Jesus was arrested after the Temple cleansing during the Feast of Tabernacles (not Passover, as Scripture clearly states in ALL four Gospel accounts) and left to rot in jail for six months, thus losing popularity with the masses.

By tossing out the Bible, liberal scholars create a new Passion narrative based on pure speculation and improbable correlations. Share on X

Expanding the timeline provides these scholars ample room to invent attractive, completely unnecessary theories to explain the “sudden” change of heart of the crowd towards Jesus.

Click here to listen to my explanation for the crowd’s supposed “sudden” change of heart during Holy Week:Laura Teaching

From “Hosanna!” on Sunday to “Crucify Him!” on Thursday:
What happened? Was it really the same crowd?

My Opinion on the “Last Days of Jesus” Documentary 

When it all comes down, the conclusions reached by Jacobovici and the other scholars are based on a logical fallacy: argumentum ex silentio (argument from silence). The unnecessarily expanded timeline, the Triumphal Entry dated to six-months earlier than every recorded account places it, Jesus’ six-month imprisonment (nowhere mentioned or hinted at) and subsequent loss of popularity (again, nowhere mentioned or hinted at), the critical role of Aelius Sejanus in the politics of Judea—ALL of this is based on speculation and conjecture. I’m so disappointed with the ending of this documentary. 

Oh well. It is what it is. I enjoyed most of the documentary, learned a couple new things, and LOVED seeing some of my favorite places in the Holy Land . 

Be encouraged by the following facts:

Many knowledgeable, liberal scholars used to deny vehemently that Jesus ever actually existed—they don’t deny it anymore! Many intelligent, liberal scholars also used to deny that He was crucified (or that anyone was ever crucified, for that matter)—they don’t deny that anymore either! Many liberal scholars still deny that He was raised from the dead—stay tuned… 

Click here to purchase the DVD: Last Days of Jesus DVD 

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