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Jesus the Prophet: His Vision of the Kingdom on Earth [Paperback]

By R. David Kaylor (Author)
Our Price $ 25.50  
Retail Value $ 30.00  
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Item Number 153993  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   240
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.96" Width: 5.94" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.85 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 19, 1994
Publisher   Westminster John Knox Press
ISBN  0664255051  
EAN  9780664255053  


Availability  129 units.
Availability accurate as of Jan 24, 2017 02:41.
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Item Description...
Overview
R. David Kaylor believes that Jesus' vision of a just society and his prophetic engagement with social, political, and economic conditions led to his execution by the Romans. Here he presents Jesus' message of a just society based on Israel's covenant tradition. He shows the prophetic background and social content of Jesus' ethical teaching and demonstrates that the parables (especially those with economic and agricultural associations) critiqued the social conditions and called for a restructuring of community life. He provides evidence that Jesus' vision endures, offering criticism of the present and promise of the future.

Publishers Description

R. David Kaylor believes that Jesus' vision of a just society and his prophetic engagement with social, political, and economic conditions led to his execution by the Romans. Here, he presents Jesus' message of a just society based on Israel's covenant tradition. He shows the prophetic background and social content of Jesus' ethical teaching and demonstrates that the parables (especially those with economic and agricultural associations) critiqued the social conditions and called for a restructuring of community life. He provides evidence that Jesus' vision remains, offering criticism of the present and promise of a future.

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More About R. David Kaylor

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Kaylor is Professor of Religion at Davidson College. He earned his PhD in Biblical Studies from Duke University.

R. David Kaylor currently resides in the state of North Carolina.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Jesus the Prophet of the Kingdom of God on Earth  Jan 5, 2007
Of all the works on the historical personage of Jesus up to the present, this may well be the most impressive. Having personally read most everything on the topic from von Harnack through Eisenman, this book to me offers the most compelling and coherent explication of the ministry of Jesus of Nazareth I have yet encountered. While R. David Kaylor does nothing to diminish the "universal Christ" of Christian worship, he describes a man with a far different mission. And, that mission was the preaching of the Kingdom of God in a specific time and place. From the very first page of the preface, the author asserts his premise. In doing so, it is immediately evident that Kaylor is going to describe the mission of Jesus on earth in very practical terms. And I quote the author, "... not surprisingly, the universal Christ of faith is regarded as incompatible with a particular Jesus located in a particular history. What is not so evident to those that feel that way is the extent to which what they regard as a "universal" Christ actually mirrors the values they derive not from the New Testament but from their own culture. Thus, to challenge their universal Christ is not merely to challenge a theology thought to derive from the New Testament but also to call into question the concrete cultural values by which they live."

And what does Kaylor find in Jesus' preaching of the Kingdom? He finds a thoroughly political Jesus challenging the root assumptions of the arrangements of the earthly Kingdom of the Roman Empire, the Hellenized Jewish ruling class, and the commercializing agricultural economy of first century C.E. Roman Palestine. This is not a new concept, however, it has never been handled in a completely convincing manner by prior scholars as far as I am concerned. Kaylor is aware of and in touch with all the prior scholarly material on his topic and explains his interface with it in detail including among others, Brandon, Hengel, Horsley and Crossan. He makes it clear that his historical methodology is rigorous so as to yield as objective a picture of Jesus' ministry as possible. What is new in this book and what I find convincing is the explanation of Jesus as the prophet of a Kingdom of God based on the convenantal relationship of God to his people. His covenantal conception is expansive and goes well beyond the Torah, and while, preached to his fellow Jews, it obviously could be inclusive of all of mankind. Jesus' message demanded a change in the social and political arrangements of his day and was subversive. For his troubles, Jesus of Nazareth was crucified as a threat to the state. Jesus attracted a following otherwise there would have been no reason to execute him in Kaylor's reading. That his following was among the poor and dispossessed is amply attested to. The powerful and the rich are not among his followers and were his executioners.

This reified picture of a very human Jesus of Nazareth will be disconcerting to many. However, Kaylor's history and exegetics are exhaustive, convincing, and take into account a vast amount of other scholarship. That he is able to persuasively build upon the work of other scholars while giving them full credit is a tribute to his own erudition and modesty. His textual analysis is fresh and very up to date including and accounting for all materials from the Jesus seminar, Kloppenborg and Scott and most others. His readings may be controversial but within the context of his project and the realities of first century C.E. Jewish sensibilities they ring true. The only major problem with the book is a lack of a bibliography. Therefore, to account for his sources one has to study the footnotes. And no matter how widely read you may be in this area, I suspect you will find interesting materials in those notes. Published in 1994, only the later work of William E. Arnal might modify Kaylor's work to a small extent. As to Robert Eisenman's later work, this book literally discredits Eisenman's as serious scholarship. This book is a "tour de force" that needs to be reckoned with by all with more than a passing interest in the topic of the historical personage of Jesus. While not an easy read, it will reward your close attention. And by the way, how you, the reader, interface Kaylor's very earthly and political Jesus with the universal Christ of faith is still left up to you.
 

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