Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls

Overview

Why have the mysterious Dead Sea Scrolls been called the greatest archaeological find of the millennium? Is something precious, or damaging to faith, being concealed by scholars who have monopolized access to these hidden documents? Distinguished Dead Sea Scrolls scholar James H. Charlesworth and an international array of experts clear away all the cobwebs masking the lost centuries of these ancient treasures. Combining the most recent work on the Scrolls from Canada, England, Germany, Italy, Israel, and the ...
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Overview

Why have the mysterious Dead Sea Scrolls been called the greatest archaeological find of the millennium? Is something precious, or damaging to faith, being concealed by scholars who have monopolized access to these hidden documents? Distinguished Dead Sea Scrolls scholar James H. Charlesworth and an international array of experts clear away all the cobwebs masking the lost centuries of these ancient treasures. Combining the most recent work on the Scrolls from Canada, England, Germany, Italy, Israel, and the United States, Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls presents the definitive international and inter-confessional consensus on what these controversial documents have to say, and on how they have revolutionized our understanding of the founder of Christianity, Jesus of Nazareth. Gone are the myriad sensational accounts (with their outlandish claims) presented in the tabloid press and in other "pop" treatments of the Scrolls. With the keen eye of acknowledged experts, Charlesworth and his colleagues give us an accessible and intriguing view that is free from parochial bias. The result is a cornucopia of discussion on fascinating topics drawn from the very latest research on the Scrolls and the Qumran Essene community credited with writing them. Some of the material examined in this volume includes what the Scrolls have to say about the historical Jesus, crucifixion in ancient Palestine, the existence of an Essene quarter in Jerusalem, and the discovery of a "pre-Christian" messiah martyr cult. Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls gets to the heart of the matter of why these documents are so important. Simply, they give us unprecedented and unparalleled insight into the times in which Jesus lived, and remain among the few surviving original documents written by the hands of Jesus' contemporaries. This detailed investigation provides us with useful insight into, and much needed clarification of, Jesus life and teachings as they begin to emerge from the shadows of history.

From the time of their chance discovery in 1947, the Dead Sea Scrolls have stirred worldwide interest in ancient Judaism and early Christianity. This landmark volume makes sense of the controversy and debate surrounding the Dead Sea Scrolls for the general reader.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Neither the recent excitement over the Dead Sea Scrolls nor the flow of books--scholarly and popular--on their impact show signs of abating. Some of these books are primarily sensationalistic, while others represent sound scholarship. This book is among the latter. Editor Charlesworth has established himself as a careful scholar, especially in the area of early Jewish and Christian studies. Bringing together a dozen essays (including three of his own) on the influence, of the Essenes on Jesus of Nazareth, he presents a critical review of the major similarities and differences between the Essenes and Jesus. Among the intriguing suggestions is that, contrary to prevailing opinion, Jesus did address or allude to the teachings and practices of the Essenes. The contributors generally express such nontraditional ideas cautiously, since there is much work yet to be done on the Scrolls. Still, this is a solid contribution to the current debate that will inform and challenge both scholars and lay readers. For academic and large public libraries.-- Craig W. Beard, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham Lib.
Booknews
Scholars from North America, Europe, and Israel examine how recent work on the Dead Sea Scrolls has significantly altered the academic understanding of the life and times of Jesus. Includes details of how crucifixions were carried out, and a inquiry as to whether James was Jesus' brother. Charlesworth is the editor of the Dead Sea Scrolls Project at Princeton Theological Seminary. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of Maps and Diagrams
List of Illustrations
Preface
Abbreviations
Contributors
Foreword: Qumran Scrolls and a Critical Consensus
1 The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Historical Jesus 1
2 Jesus and the Temple Scroll 75
3 Membership in the Covenant People at Qumran and in the Teaching of Jesus 104
4 Recovering Jesus' Formative Background 123
5 Jesus as "Son" and the Righteous Teacher as "Gardener" 140
6 The Parable of the Unjust Steward: Jesus' Criticism of the Essenes 176
7 Jesus, the Primitive Community, and the Essene Quarter of Jerusalem 198
8 Opposition to the Temple: Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls 235
9 Jesus, Table-Fellowship, and Qumran 254
10 CRUCIFIXION: Archaeology, Jesus, and the Dead Sea Scrolls 273
11 Two Ascended to Heaven - Jesus and the Author of 4Q491 290
12 The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran 302
Selected Bibliography 333
Index of Scriptures Cited 339
Index of Dead Sea Scrolls Cited 347
Index of Other Ancient Writings Cited 355
Index of Modern Authors 365
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