Jesus Christ

Burton Hamilton Throckmorton, Author Westminster John Knox Press $19.95 (145p) ISBN 978-0-664-25735-4
In response to the many recent claims to reveal the ""real Jesus,"" Burton H. Throckmorton, professor emeritus of New Testament at Bangor Theological Seminary (Maine), discusses the significance of the witness to Jesus Christ found in the Synoptic Gospels. The first three chapters explore the multiple testimonies about the identity of the historical Jesus. Here, Throckmorton uses historical and literary criticism to examine the sources of the Gospel stories, contending that the half century that elapsed between the death of Jesus and the first collected stories about his life is crucial to a clear understanding of the difference between the historical Jesus and the church's creation of the legend of Jesus. The heart of the book centers on one aspect of the teaching and preaching of Jesus: the dominion of God. Throckmorton asserts that Jesus himself was the earthly manifestation of God's dominion and that his followers had to observe Jesus' actions closely and to hear his teachings clearly in order to understand the new preaching of God's new kingdom. Far from John Dominic Crossan's recent portrayal of Jesus as a Mediterranean Jewish cynic or John P. Meier's portrait of Jesus as a ""marginal Jew,"" Throckmorton paints his traditionalist portrait of Jesus as apocalyptic prophet in broad strokes, but it is just one more modern rendering that will have difficulty finding a place in an already overcrowded gallery. (July)
Reviewed on: 06/29/1998
Release date: 06/01/1998
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