The Bible and Beyond Podcast Episode

Was Ancient Manichaeism Christian?

An Interview with Dr. Jason BeDuhn

Dr. Jason BeDuhn

Dr. Jason BeDuhn with a digital image of a page from the Chester Beatty Kephalaia, a late 4th/early 5th century Coptic Manichaean text.

Dr. Jason BeDuhn, an expert on Manichaeism, takes us into the ancient world where Mani was a leader of early Jesus followers in the East, before the fourth century Council of Nicea. He paints an intriguing picture of Mani’s interpretation of Jesus’s teachings and how Christianity might have been different if he hadn’t lost the competition with other leaders from the West. Mani’s followers saw his willingness to sacrifice for others parallel to Jesus’s martyrdom.

Dr. Jason BeDuhn is a professor of Comparative Study of Religions and Asian Studies at Northern Arizona University and chairs the university’s Liberal Studies Committee. He is editor of the Nag Hammadi and Manichaean Studies with Brill Publishers, and he co-chairs Westar Institute’s Christianity Seminar. BeDuhn is a Guggenheim Fellow and National Humanities Center Fellow. He won the “Best First Book” award for his book, The Manichaean Body published in 2000, and more recently he authored The First New Testament: Marcion’s Scriptural Canon (2013). | View books on Amazon

This podcast is part of our May – July 2023 focus on the “Surprising Things about Jesus.”  Click here to see more content from the series.

Occasionally our Bible and Beyond podcast episodes are made available as video podcasts on our YouTube channel. This month’s episode can be found here.