Moses: A Lifeby Jonathan Kirsch
Pub. Date: 11/02/1999
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Lawgiver and liberator. Seer and prophet. The only human permitted to converse with God "face-to-face." Moses is the most commanding presence in the Old Testament. Yet as Jonathan Kirsch shows in this brilliant, stunningly original volume, Moses was also an enigmatic and mysterious figureat once a good shepherd and a ruthless warrior, a spiritual
Lawgiver and liberator. Seer and prophet. The only human permitted to converse with God "face-to-face." Moses is the most commanding presence in the Old Testament. Yet as Jonathan Kirsch shows in this brilliant, stunningly original volume, Moses was also an enigmatic and mysterious figureat once a good shepherd and a ruthless warrior, a spiritual leader and a magician, a lawgiver who broke his own laws, God's chosen friend and hounded victim. Now, in Moses: A Life, Kirsch accomplishes the wondrous feat of revealing the real Moses, a strikingly modern figure who steps out from behind the facade of Sunday school lessons and movie matinees.
Drawing on the biblical text and a treasury of both scholarship and storytelling, Kirsch examines all that is known and all that has been imagined of Moses. In these vivid pages, we see the marvels and mysteries of Moses's life in a new lighthis rescue in infancy and adoption by an Egyptian princess; his reluctant assumption of the role of liberator; his struggles to wrest his people from the pharaoh's dominion; his desperate vigil on Mount Sinai. Here too is the darker, more ominous Mosesthe sorcerer, the husband of a pagan woman, the military commander who cold-bloodedly ordered the slaying of innocent people; the beloved of God whom God sought twice to murder.
Jonathan Kirsch brings both prodigious knowledge and a keen imagination to one of the most compelling stories of the Bible, and the results are fascinating. A figure of mystery, passion, and contradiction, Moses emerges from this book very much a hero for our time.
- Random House Publishing Group
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- 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)
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- 14 - 18 Years
Table of Contents
|Chapter OneThe Moses No One Knows||1|
|Chapter TwoBorn at the Right Time||30|
|Chapter ThreeA Prince of Egypt||57|
|Chapter FourThe Fugitive||87|
|Chapter FiveThe Man God Befriended, the Man He Sought|
|Chapter SixSigns and Wonders||139|
|Chapter EightThe Sorcerer and the Sorcerer's Apprentice||207|
|Chapter NineGod of the Mountain, God of the Way||242|
|Chapter TenMan of War||281|
|Chapter Eleven"Moses is Dead"||329|
|Chapter TwelveThe Search for the Historical Moses||354|
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Kirsch has written an excellent biography of king David. In this effort, he goes on endlessly about Moses' early life, a subject that takes up too much of the book. I would have liked more analysis of his leadership and relationship to and with God. In King David, the subject became a real person. Here Moses never quite acquires flesh and blood. Kirsch presents alternatives that leave him more blurred then the original Bible portrait. I didn't feel it was time wasted; I just feel the book could have been more compactly.
This book was a bit unusual in that the second half was stronger than the first half. Basically, this book is a straightforward telling of the Moses story. The story is told in chronological fashion with many biblical citations. In the first half, however, the author continually interrupts the narrative with mention from other sources, especially midrash. For the most part, these additions are distractions. In the book's second half, however, Kirsch basically ignores these secondary sources and primarily uses the Bible. Doing this, the story takes on momentum and is enjoyable. True, his conclusion seems a bit lackluster, but I was glad for the easy-to-read second half.
I purchased this book as a research source for my own writing. I expected a dry, uninspired expose' on Moses. Wrong! Mr. Kirsch gave us Moses, the man, as well as Moses, the Deliverer, leader, human. Mr. Kirsch's attention to detail, written sources, and oral tradition was impressive. Bravo!
I must agree with the conclusion in one of the reviews; the subtitle is somewhat misleading. In Kirsch's attempts to illuminate a human rather than mythic image of Moses, the reader is left wondering if more could have been gleaned from the sources Kirsch cites throughout the book. The reader gains little insight into Moses' emotions other than anger and frustrations as a leader. In his search for the man Moses, Kirsch provides only sparse insight into what might have been the drives and desires and emotions that we expect in real people. Was Moses ever afraid other than his initial contact with God? Was he ever lustful? depressed? Did he ever show love for his sons? Did his sons resent their father? Many such questions could be asked about Moses and some insight gained through the rich midrashic literature but this seems to be beyond the scope that Kirsch attempts here. Despite this disappointment, I enjoyed the book and highly recommend it. Its strength may lie in stimulating the reader to search further for the man Moses.
To ask for another copy cause broke first
The book started off strong, then ambled off into yawnworthiness.
Looking up the statements of the author revealed many lies and werw often oit of context. Author discredits the Bible countless times, unless It proves thier point. It is either all inspired, or all untustworthy. Author can't seem to decide.
That the second set was not by you know who but a not too exact copy he had to put together consider having smashed the original he goes back up and asks for a duplicate? Moses had more than one wife and a smart sister please remember those cows and honey hives belonged to someone else and were invaded and taken over by force a creator of all things is just that all things
You realize that some peoples beliefs are different. I was looking for what really happened ,not all that red sea junk.