The daunting task of reporting on the birth of Jesus
Keith Morrison, Dateline Correspondent
That said, the questions are simply irresistible. Where was Jesus born, Bethlehem or Nazareth? Were there "wise men?" How many? Were they kings? Did Herod slaughter the boy-children of Bethlehem? Did the Holy Family flee to Egypt, as Matthew reports? Legions of scholars have done their best to sort it out. We spoke on camera to six: John Dominic Crossan, Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies, DePaul University and a prolific author of books about the historical Jesus; Ben Witherington, author and Professor of New Testament Interpretation at Asbury Theological Seminary; Craig Evans, Professor of New Testament, Acadia Divinity College; Scott Hahn, Professor of Scripture, Franciscan University; A.J. Levine, Jewish scholar and teacher of the New Testament at Vanderbilt University, and Lesley Hazleton, author of a "flesh and blood" biography of Mary. Their views are instructive, fascinating and frequently conflicting. One of the most difficult parts of our assignment was the need to leave out so much of their compelling commentary.Here's the programme's blurb:
In a special edition of 'Dateline NBC,' Keith Morrison asks, "What if everything you thought you knew wasn’t the whole story?" In an attempt to answer this profound question, Morrison takes viewers on a remarkable journey -- back in time -- to unravel the mystery. "The Birth of Jesus" hour airs Dateline Friday, 8 p.m./7 C.The latter is a standard feature of advertising of TV programmes in the US -- the are on at "8/7 central", meaning 8 pm Eastern Time, 7 pm Central.