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The Five Gospels: The Search for the Authentic Words of Jesus: New Translation and Commentaryby Robert W Funk
Synopses & Reviews
x Did Jesus claim to be the Messiah?
x Did he promise to return and usher in a new age?
x How did Jesus envision the kingdom of God?
x Did he commission his disciples to convert the world and establish a church?
The Five Gospels answers these questions in a bold, dynamic work that will startle traditional readers of the Bible and rekindle interest in it among secular skeptics. In 1985 the Jesus Seminar, a distinguished group of biblical scholars led by Robert W. Funk and John Dominic Crossan (co-chairs), embarked on a new assessment of the gospels, including the recently discovered Gospel of Thomas. In pursuit of the historical Jesus, they used their collective expertise to determine the authenticity of the more than 1,500 sayings attributed to him. Their remarkable findings appear in this book.
Each saying attributed to Jesus is color-coded and presented in a completely new translation of the Greek and Coptic texts. In the judgment of the Jesus Seminar:
x only those sayings that appear in red type are considered by the Seminar to be close to what Jesus actually said;
x the words in pink less certainly originated with Jesus;
x the words in gray are not his, though they contain ideas that are close to his own;
x the sayings that appear in black have been embellished or created by his followers, or borrowed from common lore.
According to the Seminar, no more than 20 percent of the sayings attributed to Jesus were uttered by him.
This book contains illuminating commentary and notes on the text of the gospels and rigorously explores the historical and literary factors behind the Seminar's findings. The enlightening introduction by Robert W. Funk, founder of the Jesus Seminar, sums up two hundred years of gospel scholarship and provides a rare insight into the workings of the Seminar. The Five Gospels is a major work of biblical scholarship that gives new dimensions to the historical Jesus.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 538-541) and index.
About the Author
Robert W. Funk, a Guggenheim Fellow and Senior Fulbright Scholar, is the founder of the Jesus Seminar, based in Sonoma, California, at the Westar Institute.
Table of Contents
The Scholars Version Translation Panel
The Scholars Version
How to Use This Book
The Search for the Real Jesus: Darwin, Scopes, & All That
The Gospel of Mark
The Gospel of Matthew
The Gospel of Luke
The Gospel of John
The Gospel of Thomas
Roster of the Fellows of the Jesus Seminar
Suggestions for Further Study
Dictionary of Terms & Sources
Index of Red & Pink Letter Sayings
Representation of a Greek Manuscript
Cameo Essays & Texts
Feasting & Fasting: The Domestication of the Tradition
What Our Readers Are Saying
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