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The Lazarus Effect (Art West Adventures V1) [Paperback]

By Ben Witherington III (Author) & Ann Witherington (Author)
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Item Number 257334  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   264
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.9" Width: 5.9" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.85 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 15, 2008
Publisher   Pickwick Publications
ISBN  1556359640  
EAN  9781556359644  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
Archaeologist Art West makes the discovery of a lifetime in Jerusalem finding the tombstone of Lazarus, which indicates that Jesus raised him from the dead. But before he can make public his amazing discovery, the stone is stolen, sold to the British Library, and West is implicated in an antiquities fraud that will lead to a trial. West's Jewish and Muslim friends in Jerusalem rally to support West's innocence and to help find the thief who stole the stone, but then West is shot and in critical condition in a Jerusalem hospital. Can the truth be discovered in time, and West's life be saved? And what was on that Aramaic scroll that was found in Lazarus's coffin? In this fast-paced thriller, Ben Witherington, himself a NT scholar with a degree in English literature, together with his wife, Ann, introduces us to the life of an archaeologist and NT scholar and his trials and tribulations when a big find comes to light. Set in the always volatile city of Jerusalem, the Witheringtons reveal the fascinating hidden dimensions of multi-religious life in that Holy Place, and show how even today Christians, Jews, and Muslims can work together so the truth may come to light, and all may experience "the Lazarus Effect"---new life from the dead.

There's no thriller quite like an archaeological thriller, and when we find ourselves in a biblical mystery, the suspense and the drama are especially delicious. Set against the intense, exotic, and vivid backdrop of modern Israel, yet delving into the deepest mysteries of the time of Christ, The Lazarus Effect won't fail to entertain and inform. Highly recommended.
-Anne Rice, NY Times best-selling author of The Vampire Chronicles and Christ the Lord.

"Ben Witherington, the accomplished and acclaimed biblical scholar, offers a fast-paced, entertaining archaeological thriller with occasional winks to the biblical studies guild, the popularization of biblical studies in magazines and television shows, and recent controversies over ancient artifacts. Even better, The Lazarus Effect neatly portrays both the necessity of interfaith friendship and the dangers of defensive fundamentalism."
-Amy-Jill Levine, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies, Vanderbilt Divinity School, Graduate Department of Religion and College of Arts and Science

The Lazarus Effect has it all---the discovery of an explosive archaeological find that stands to revolutionize our understanding of early Christianity, religious passions in the Holy Land, human longing and bravery and treachery. What sets it apart from other thrillers of its type is the deep biblical and archaeological knowledge the Witheringtons bring to their tale.
-Steven Feldman, Web Editor, Biblical Archaeology Review

"The Lazarus Effect is a rare, gripping, fast-paced, intelligent thriller that can keep you entertained, and actually change your worldview. It's a wild ride through a tumultuous part of the world where you'll discover surprises that can make you think more deeply about some of the most important things in your life. Once you start to read it, you won't be able to put it down!"
-Tom Morris, Author of The Art of Achievement and If Harry Potter Ran General Electric and The Logic of God Incarnate
Ben Witherington III is Amos Professor of NT for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary and doctoral faculty at St. Andrews University, and the author of over thirty-five books, including New York Times Best Seller The Brother of Jesus.

Publishers Description
Archaeologist Art West makes the discovery of a lifetime in Jerusalem finding the tombstone of Lazarus, which indicates that Jesus raised him from the dead. But before he can make public his amazing discovery, the stone is stolen, sold to the British Library, and West is implicated in an antiquities fraud that will lead to a trial. West's Jewish and Muslim friends in Jerusalem rally to support West's innocence and to help find the thief who stole the stone, but then West is shot and in critical condition in a Jerusalem hospital. Can the truth be discovered in time, and West's life be saved? And what was on that Aramaic scroll that was found in Lazarus's coffin? In this fast-paced thriller, Ben Witherington, himself a NT scholar with a degree in English literature, together with his wife, Ann, introduces us to the life of an archaeologist and NT scholar and his trials and tribulations when a big find comes to light. Set in the always volatile city of Jerusalem, the Witheringtons reveal the fascinating hidden dimensions of multi-religious life in that Holy Place, and show how even today Christians, Jews, and Muslims can work together so the truth may come to light, and all may experience "the Lazarus Effect"-new life from the dead. There's no thriller quite like an archaeological thriller, and when we find ourselves in a biblical mystery, the suspense and the drama are especially delicious. Set against the intense, exotic, and vivid backdrop of modern Israel, yet delving into the deepest mysteries of the time of Christ, The Lazarus Effect won't fail to entertain and inform. Highly recommended. -Anne Rice, NY Times best-selling author of The Vampire Chronicles and Christ the Lord. "Ben Witherington, the accomplished and acclaimed biblical scholar, offers a fast-paced, entertaining archaeological thriller with occasional winks to the biblical studies guild, the popularization of biblical studies in magazines and television shows, and recent controversies over ancient artifacts. Even better, The Lazarus Effect neatly portrays both the necessity of interfaith friendship and the dangers of defensive fundamentalism." -Amy-Jill Levine, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies, Vanderbilt Divinity School, Graduate Department of Religion and College of Arts and Science The Lazarus Effect has it all-the discovery of an explosive archaeological find that stands to revolutionize our understanding of early Christianity, religious passions in the Holy Land, human longing and bravery and treachery. What sets it apart from other thrillers of its type is the deep biblical and archaeological knowledge the Witheringtons bring to their tale. -Steven Feldman, Web Editor, Biblical Archaeology Review "The Lazarus Effect is a rare, gripping, fast-paced, ntelligent thriller that can keep you entertained, and actually change your worldview. It's a wild ride through a tumultuous part of the world whereyou'll discover surprises that can make you think more deeply about some of the most important things in your life. Once you start to read it, you won't be able to put it down " -Tom Morris, Author of The Art of Achievement and If Harry Potter Ran General Electric and The Logic of God Incarnate Ben Witherington III is Amos Professor of NT for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary and doctoral faculty at St. Andrews University, and the author of over thirty-five books, including New York Times Best Seller The Brother of Jesus. Ann Witherington is Professor of Biology and Environmental Sciences at Asbury College. Ben and Ann have been married for over thirty years and have two adult children, Christy and David.

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More About Ben Witherington III & Ann Witherington

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Ben Witherington III (PhD, University of Durham) is Amos Professor of New Testament for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, and is on the doctoral faculty at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. He is the author or coauthor of more than thirty books, including The Jesus Quest, The Paul Quest, and The New York Times bestseller The Brother of Jesus. He has appeared on the History Channel, NBC, ABC, CBS, and CNN.

Ben III Witherington has published or released items in the following series...
  1. New Cambridge Bible Commentary
  2. New Testament in Context
  3. Society for New Testament Studies in Monograph


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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Entertaining, generous, and thought provoking first novel  Dec 13, 2008
Over the last week or so I've been reading something a little different - some christian fiction. Now there's two words I usually don't like to see put together "Christian" + "fiction" - too often that means some pretty trashy, low quality, often dodgy theology content that fills the shelves of our Christian bookshops. But "The Lazarus Effect" is different.

The Lazarus Effect is written by acclaimed New Testament scholar Ben Witherington III and his wife Ann. Ben is one of my three favourite NT scholars, the other two being N T Wright and Scot McKnight. All three write a combination of serious scholarly books and Christian books aimed at the rest of us. And like McKnight, Ben Witherington has his own blog, which is one of my top reads.

Briefly, the story is set in modern Israel, where an American archaeologist Dr Art West discovers the tombstone of the biblical character Lazarus, as well as manuscripts linking him to the authorship of the gospel of John (an interesting proposition that Witherington has discussed in other places as well). A range of characters of multiple religious and ethnic backgrounds get involved as a fast-paced thriller/detective/court-room drama ensues. Despite it's Christian authorship, the novel is very generous and respectful to those of other faiths. Short chapters and a simple style make this a quick and enjoyable read. I found this novel good to read in short sharp burst of a couple of chapters at a time when I was busy, but also good to sit down with for longer periods as well.

So for a novel written by a couple of Professors in non-literary fields, The Lazarus Effect is pretty good. It does have a feel of a first time effort and realistically is not going to win any serious literature awards, but I found it very enjoyable and a little bit thought provoking. I'd been exposed to Witherington's ideas about Lazarus before so that didn't strike me as being too surprising but for someone who hadn't heard these ideas previously this could be a little controversial and very stimulating. Certainly the authorship of John and the identity of the "beloved disciple" is one of those biblical mysteries that it would be fascinating to discover an answer to. In this novel Witherington provides his answer, and in a most entertaining fashion. Well worth reading.
 
Loved this well-informed thriller  Dec 11, 2008
I loved this book. Biblical Scholar Ben Witherington and his wife Ann Witherington have put together a great, plausible work of fiction, and I enjoyed reading it. And further than that, I learned something.

Art West, a well-known biblical archaeologist, makes an astonishing discovery. In an unexcavated mound in Bethany, he finds the tomb of Lazarus, Mary, and Martha. In it is reference to Lazarus's first "resurrection" from the dead and his eventual death, as he awaits the second resurrection. Also discovered is an ancient manuscript of the Gospel of John in Aramaic, shedding important light on the origin and nature of that Gospel (Witherington, a Johannine scholar, makes some interesting points about dating and authorship). But before West can make the discovery known, he is trapped inside the tomb, and before he can show the discovery to the world, the tomb is robbed and the inscription is stolen. Thus begins a chase to find this astonishing piece of history amid doubts about its authenticity and among an interesting inter-religious setting in Jerusalem. West is aided by his Jewish friend and scholar Grace Levine, and by his Muslim friends Kahlil El Asad and his daughter Hannah, antiquities dealers in the old city. As the story moves forward the pace picks up as Art is framed for having a fake inscription made and also for shooting his friend Kahlil. With so many rumors swirling in such a volatile world, suspicion rests on Art, and he finds himself on trial for the killing and for the forgery. And more stories intertwine, as fundamentalist Christians and ultra-Orthodox Jews both see West as someone who is compromising the essentials of the faith. The complexity of the plot really helps to illumine the complexity of the real-life situation in modern Israel.

The Witheringons' book is a real page turner, with a great plot and interesting characters. But what sets it apart is both the plausibility of its events (Ben Witherington is an expert in the James ossuary, a real-life artifact of similar significance also fraught with suspicion) and the quality of its history. It is obvious that the authors know the Biblical world and modern Israel well, and they help the reader to feel some of the important dynamics between the various groups. The relationship between evangelicals and more fundamentalist dispensationalist Christians and Zionists, and ultra-Orthodox Jews are also brought into the mix as well, along with Muslims. But in all things, the Witheringtons' bring respect to their portrayals, not caricatures. His discussion of the dating and provenance of John's Gospel (that Lazarus is the beloved disciple, the primary author of the Gospel) is an interesting argument, here made very well at a popular level. I've read some of his material elsewhere on this idea, and it is an interesting one to ponder, not least because it fits with the setting of most events in the Gospel and is given further credence by some verbal connections with Lazarus as one whom Jesus "loved." Finally, the Witheringtons also bring a great glimmer of hope to the situation as the "Lazarus Effect"--new life from the dead--takes hold among many of the characters and brings hope in unexpected places. It certainly isn't serious scholarship, nor is it meant to be, but that doesn't mean it's flippant or shallow either. Instead, it provides a great story with just enough nuance to give it depth. I think this book is a great read and would make a great gift.
 
A Great Archaeological Thriller That Will Make You Say "Dan Brown? Who's That?"  Nov 18, 2008
I was taken by surprise by how much I enjoyed this book. Ben Witherington is a respected New Testament academic, but until now, he has never written a novel. Most academics who take a stab at fiction fail miserably. They usually err on the side of spending too much time making sure the setting is historically plausible and they forget that there is this thing called a plot.

But this book has a great plot. Dr. Art West is an evangelical Christian archeologist who discovers the find of a lifetime, the tomb of Lazarus and Mary and Martha, with all sorts of goodies inside. But Dr. Patrick Stone's research assistant is spying on him, and he and Stone trap West in the tomb. West is "resurrected" moments later by his friend Mustafa.

But Stone steals the ossuary stone and some scrolls and seeks to pin the robbery and other assorted nasties on West. West becomes a suspect, and Stone escapes with the stone and takes it to London, where the British Library gives him $35 million dollars in exchange for the stone.

In the meantime, there are radical fundamentalist groups in Israel who do not want the news of the Lazarus discovery to be revealed. What will become of our hero and of the sinister Stone? Things are heating up in the Holy Land. Shots are fired. People are wounded. Lives are on the line. Read "The Lazarus Effect" to see what happens.

 
Anne Rice's Lazarus Effect Blurb   Oct 8, 2008
"There is no thriller quite like an archaeological thriller and when we find ourselves in a Biblical mystery, the suspense and the drama are especially delicious. Set against the intense, exotic, and vivid backdrop of modern Israel, yet delving into the deepest mysteries of the time of Christ, The Lazarus Effect won't fail to entertain and inform. Highly recommended!"

Anne Rice-- NY Times best-selling author of the Vampire Chronicles and Christ the Lord
 

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