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Jesus and Politics: Confronting the Powers [Paperback]

By Alan Storkey (Author)
Our Price $ 25.50  
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Item Number 144970  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   336
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.16" Width: 6.06" Height: 0.98"
Weight:   1.09 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 31, 2005
Publisher   Baker Academic
ISBN  0801027845  
EAN  9780801027840  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
From Augustine to Solzhenitsyn, Christians have struggled with the meaning of faith and politics, and the landscape of those who have tried to combine the two is littered with distortion and confusion. Alan Storkey examines the politics of Jesus, reading out from the life and work of Jesus instead of reading into the New Testament with a preconceived agenda. With this work, Storkey presents a thorough narrative reading of the Gospels, moving into issues of political philosophy, principle, and practice. Unlike other authors who focus on political themes, Storkey provides a significant, unique contribution by focusing on politics itself. Jesus and Politics will appeal to students of the New Testament, Christianity and culture, politics, and economics as well as thoughtful readers interested in Jesus studies and politics.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Interesting and inspiring  Mar 10, 2007
Interesting and well written book on the background of the power structures Jesus faced.
Inspiring, because of many contextual insights that give one a better grasp on the gospel narratives, and show how much his teaching of the kingdom of God has to do with 'down to earth' issues and problems.
Jesus and the Powers  May 10, 2006
Jesus and the Powers

Alan Storkey's book, Jesus and Politics, shows that the life and ministry of Jesus is all about the establishment of God's kingdom. That is what Jesus came preaching-the kingdom of God. That is why he threatened Roman and Jewish authorities alike. That is why his disciples finally recognized him as the Messiah, the Christ, the one authorized by God to rule. That is why the placard nailed to his cross read "This is Jesus, the King of the Jews." That is why when God raised him from the dead he told his disciples that all authority in heaven and on earth now belongs to him. That is why when he ascended to his Father his followers saw him ascending to sit on the throne at the right hand of the Father to rule forever.

Any Christian today who wants to understand the Bible and the Christian drama into which God draws us by the power of the Spirit, must read the Bible as the story of God's kingdom and our place in it. And not our place only, but the place of every government, every nation, every authority on earth. Nothing and no one stands outside this story of judgment and redemption, which is now dramatically unfolding toward the climactic return of the King, the Lord, Jesus the Christ.

What Storkey shows in great detail, however, is how surprising and odd Jesus' politics were. They are odd and disarming even for us today. He did not come with the kind of power most expected from the Messiah. Jesus refused to take up the sword, laid down his life as the suffering servant, and told his disciples to let the power of God's Spirit fill them. Yet Jesus was doing and saying these things not in renunciation of politics and power, but in order to fulfill God's kingdom on God's terms. The most telling example of this dramatic contrast, says Storkey, appears in the trial of Jesus before the Jewish Sanhedrin (reported in Matthew 26:57ff.). The leaders are frustrated that they cannot do away with Jesus. The high priest commands him, under oath, to "tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God." Jesus finally speaks: "Yes, it is as you say. But I say to all of you: In the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven."

"We recognize [here] the conjunction of Messiah and Son of Man," Storkey writes. "They are one and the same-God's ruler, God's judge-to whom they will have to give account. We also note the worthy way Jesus rules and proclaims judgment in the face of the unjust judges. The Son of Man stands trial as Messiah, fulfilling its content as no one can conceive, and on no other terms than his own. Caiaphas tears his clothes after Jesus' response and is incandescent with rage. He has his evidence, and the rest of the Sanhedrin concurs. They hit Jesus with their fists, spit in his face, blindfold him, and say, `Prophesy to us, Messiah. Who hit you?' (26:67-68n). There is no doubt what is at issue."

Clearly, Jesus offends those who think that they hold highest authority on earth. But he goes beyond offense, says Storkey. "The government of God . . . subverts. . . . It sets up a different way. The gentle rule of God pulls down all kinds of existing powers and structures that glory in themselves. . . . The biggest subversion of all is to dethrone the ruler and politics and put them in their limited place under the sovereignty of God. This change is at the fulcrum of world political history." And with this new approach of authoritative humility and justice, Jesus comes to establish God's rule over all, forever.

It is not possible to summarize or convey the full force of Storkey's book in a few paragraphs. Storkey stays close to the Gospels, letting them tell the story, uncovering for us political details that we can't see any more because we don't understand the nature of God's kingdom. Storkey shows us Jesus' political principles, his statecraft, his role as world ruler, and even his view of taxation. Then he follows the King of the Jews to the cross and on through his resurrection.

Politically sound analysis  Mar 21, 2006
This book offers a theologically sound analysis of the role that the politics 1AD style served as the backdrop for Jesus' ministry and how Jesus reacted to the political leaders of his day. Must reading for anyone who tries to engage in church state discourse, especiallly those who claim to know Jesus' take on 21st century politics.

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