Authentic Gospel Of Jesus Hardcover – Nov 25 2003
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About the Author
Geza Vermes was born in Hungary in 1924. From 1957 to 1991 he taught in at the Universities of Newcastle and Oxford. Professor Vermes is the author of The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (1997) and The Changing Faces of Jesus (2000). He lives in Oxford. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Top Customer Reviews
The aim is to rediscover the core message preached and practiced by Jesus, whose statements are grouped into nine chapters by literary category: narratives & commands, controversy stories, words of wisdom, parables, scripture quotes, prayers, Son of Man sayings, Statements about the Kingdom of God, and Eschatological Rules of Behaviour. The commentary following these quotations endeavors to separate the different levels of superimposed meaning with the goal of establishing their primary settings and significance.
In the final chapter Vermes attempts to formulate the principles that establish parameters for the authenticity of these words. He probes beneath the layers produced by evangelists, the early church and 2000 years of Christianity in order to discover the true meaning of the original teachings. The work culminates in the Epilogue in which the author attempts to outline the essence of the message and personality of the real Jesus based on the words judged most likely to be genuine.
The section titled The Religion of Jesus reveals that there was nothing abstract, theoretical or speculative about it. Jesus tried to teach his listeners how to draw close to God through concrete action and behaviour.Read more ›
But the real tragedy is that the organized delusions of mainstream Christianity can make us throw out the baby with the bath water. True, there is no convincing proof that anyone named Jesus of Nazareth ever existed. But the message attributed to this apocryphal messiah is profoundly true. It is in fact the same message brought by every other great teacher of humanity before and since the supposed lifetime of Jesus.
It scarcely matters whether the words of Jesus were truly uttered by a historical personage or whether they combine the teachings of several Anashei haElohim, "Men of God," who lived in Galilee during that era. With impeccable scholarship Geza Vermes demonstrates the high probability of the latter view, as against the patent absurdity of mainstream Christian dogma.
The method essentially consists in this: If the authors of the Gospel agree with my agenda then what they say is true. If they disagree, then they or someone else must have added something in. Sigh.
As well, for years Vermes has been trying to slot Jesus in with someone called "Honni the Circle-Drawer". This is beyond absurdity. In fact, all the books Vermes has "dedicated" to Jesus are absurd. They all simply wreak of agenda-politics.
Is this what passes for scholarship at Oxford University? God help us.