The gospels were written by unknown authors, taken from stories not known to be entirely accurate and were not drawn from the original source material.<quoted text>
Yes there are plenty of studies. And the majority of them focus on identification of individuals engaged in criminal activities. That's a criminal procedure issue, and not a historicity issue. The criteria for assessing reliability are not the same because with history, there's no penalty. The criminal justice system demands a much higher standard because a person's life and/or liberty are at stake. That's exactly why citing jury instructions DOES cut it. History isn't held to the same high standard of eye-witness testimony as what is found in the legal system. It just isn't. I work with documents all the time determining their historical credibility. Do you?
It's much more reliable than you think in matters of history. And I'm not talking about the testimony of suspects either. Are you telling me that if you were a constant companion of somebody you really liked as a teacher, guru, mentor, etc, etc. for three years, and that person was violently put to death; that you wouldn't remember it? Gimme a break!
You shouldn't consider it to be unreliable. Nor should you consider it to be unreliable. You should approach it from a neutral perspective as much as possible. I don't expect quoting the Bible to convince you of anything. You obviously don't want to be convinced. However, I'll challenge you to bring your best reasoning forward to counter my next post. I'll focus solely on the books by Luke. Gospel of Luke, and Acts. And I'll only consider the prologue of each. Deal?
Let me share a little inside secret with you regarding historical research:
NOBODY who seriously studies or works professionally with historical research does so without bias. It's naive to think anyone does. And having bias doesn't necessarily mean that somebody is going to dishonestly distort facts. Historians have very specific criteria they use to neutralize bias as much as possible. But to think that ALL bias can be eliminated from historical research and writing? Not a chance.
That's not my opinion, that's the scholarly consensus.