From Jesus to Christ: The Origins of the New Testament Images of Christ / Edition 2

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Carefully examining the New Testament texts, the author provides new insights into such issues as the social and religious problems facing the various early Christian communities, the content of Jesus' ministry and the circumstances of his crucifixion, and the reasons why Jews of the Diaspora-- Paul, initially, among them-- rejected Jesus' apostles.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300084573
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 7/28/2000
  • Series: Yale Nota Bene Series
  • Edition description: Subsequent
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 410,514
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.60 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface vii
Introduction ix
Introduction to the Second Edition xiii
Part I The World of the New Testament 1
1. The Nature of the Documents 3
2. The Legacy of Alexander 9
Hellenistic Paganism
Hellenistic Judaism
3. Images of Jesus in the Gospels and Paul 18
John: The Stranger from Heaven
Luke/Acts: The Messiah of the Gentiles
Matthew: The Christ of the Scriptures
Mark: The Secret Messiah
Paul: The Christ of the Parousia
4. Hellenism and Christianity 62
Part II The World of Judaism, 65
5. The Idea of Israel 70
The Biblical View of the Past
The Expectation of Redemption: Restoration Theology
Palestinian Judaism in the Time of Jesus
6. Toward a Historical Image of Jesus 94
The First Reading
The Second Reading
7. Jesus of Nazareth 127
Part III The Christs of the Churches 131
8. Responses to the Resurrection 133
The Kerygma of the Early Mission
Jewish Persecutions of the Early Mission
The Apostle to the Gentiles
9. Between the Resurrection and the Parousia 177
Mark: The End of the Age and the Birth of the Past
The Later Synoptic Gospels: Establishing the Present
John: The Eternal Word
10. Jesus of Nazareth in Christian Tradition 205
List of Abbreviations 217
Glossary 220
Suggested Reading 224
Bibliography 229
Index of Passages 239
Name Index 249
Subject Index 252
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2008

    A reviewer

    This book is a superb well written one with a brilliant exposition at times of the Hellenistic influence in early Christianity, specifically in Pauline doctrine as well in John's Gospel. However judging in terms of its main aims the book betrays some kind of religious factionalism disguised as academic presentation for the lay man. It is possible to identify three central theses at work: a' There is nothing original regarding Jesus Christ message: everything is either explicit or implicit in the Jewish tradition. b' Christendom of the first and second century is the one that felt threaten by Judaism not the other way round. Assuming this we can get a better understanding of the evolving Christ's image from Mark to John's Gospels. c' The historical Jesus' context cannot be understood through the inner tensions at the core of the Jewish Second Temple Era doctrine but rather through the tensions between the Jewish world and the Non-Jewish one in the first century Palestine. Those theses also require a sort of radicalization of the well known Albert Schweitzer's seminal idea that the best way in approaching to the historical Jesus is seeing him as a first century apocalyptic Jew. The original thesis makes sense but Fredriksen reductionism on this regard leave us before such an one-dimensional ministry that it results impossible to comprehend how it stands the diversity of images and meanings that Fredriksen accounts for and that she explains as a result of an evolving context rather than by the interaction of the latter with the inherent complexity of the starting point that is the historical Jesus itself, his message and his death. I'm not a believer but it is clear to me that the author by no means is willing to pose the question of why no other eschatological first century Jewish leader was subject of such a rich and complex interpretation, not to say remembrance. In some extent Fredriksen's argumentation raises more problems than those she tried to solve. In being so dismissive about Jesus Christ complexity and originality the only way left to understand how his inner circle recovered to gain momentum after such a blow as his execution was points out towards the resurrection issue: an unintended position indeed for a skeptical-hypercritical academic. At the end Fredriksen misunderstood in the sake of zealotry which is the mission of an historian. On regard the original relationship between Christianity and Judaism it does not consist in making revisionism on which of them truly was the offended part but in identifying the key tensions of a cultural matrix of symbols, narratives and meanings, which within a specific context of violence and a desperate need of consolation found a voice to set in motion a new religion.

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