The Essential Jesus: Original Sayings and Earliest Images

John Dominic Crossan, Author HarperOne $18 (199p) ISBN 978-0-06-251044-0
With a concise gathering of 88 sayings by Jesus and 25 pre-Constantinian Christian paintings and other works of art of Him, Dom Crossan once again focuses on the Galilean ``in his actual life'' rather than on the canonical Jesus of the New Testament's four gospels. Jesus, Crossan believes, was a plainspoken sage; and ``communal empowerment'' together with healing comprised the core of his message about the ``program and presence'' of the kingdom he pointed to. Appropriately, the 25 early depictions, juxtaposed here with the sayings, emphasize how Jesus was understood before his revolutionary humanity was transfigured by the later creeds and theology of Christian orthodoxy. Crossan's eloquent pairing of the teachings and the imagery amplifies his The Historical Jesus and Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography, as well as The Five Gospels from the Jesus Seminar of which Crossan is a prominent member. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1994
Release date: 11/01/1994
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