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by Princeton Symposium on Judaism and Christian Origins 1987 Princeton t,James H. Charlesworth

An international team of prominent Jewish and Christian scholars focus on the historical and theological importance of the presence or absence of the term "Messiah" and messianic ideas in the Hebrew Scriptures, New Testament, Philo, Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, Josephus, and Dead Sea Scrolls. This volume stems from the First Princeton Symposium on Judaism and Christian Origins.
Download The Messiah Developments in Earliest Judaism and Christianity epub
ISBN: 0800625633
ISBN13: 978-0800625634
Category: History
Subcategory: World
Author: Princeton Symposium on Judaism and Christian Origins 1987 Princeton t,James H. Charlesworth
Language: English
Publisher: Fortress Pr; First Printing edition (August 1, 1992)
Pages: 597 pages
ePUB size: 1620 kb
FB2 size: 1321 kb
Rating: 4.5
Votes: 578
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This is a rich, meaty book filled with essays from various points of view on how the Jewish and later Christian ideas about a Messiah developed. As with most essay collections, some you will find brilliant; a number will make you roll your eyes in exasperation.

From the first, the early Christians proclaimed that Jesus was God. Martin Hengel points out that by 110 AD Pliny reports Christians sang hymns to Christ 'as though he were their God' and many Christians proved willing to die rather than curse Christ. In 132 AD Simon bar Kosiba asked Jewish Christians to either curse Christ or die. And in the Synoptics the "messianic claim of Jesus is a thread that runs through trial narrative to the title on the cross...basileus ton loudaion" (p 434).

Hengel finds that "the Johannine Prologue, the letter to the Hebrews, and the letter to the Philippians shows...that christological thinking between 50 and 100 A D was much more unified in its basic structure...later developments are the Philippian hymn..That more happened in the first twenty years than in the entire later centuries-long developments of dogma" (p 443).

From the very earliest days of Christianity, believers insisted that Jesus was the Messiah. Paul refers to Jesus as Jesus Christ, as if being the Messiah were his last name. and "by the end of the thirties the members of the new Jewish sect in Antioch were called 'Christians'(p 444).

Where did the Christians find the concept of the Messiah? Contrary to the arguments of scholars a century ago, the idea of a Messiah was not clearly defined in Second Temple Judaism. Charlesworth points out that there "was no common Jewish Messianic hope during the time of Jesus" (p 5). The references in the Old Testament were obscure. And not necessarily eschatalogical.

Horsely finds that "In the literature of late Second Temple times there appears to be little interest in a 'Messiah"" (p 279), and the references that do exist are vague. .

Yet Borsch argues that "1 Enoch ...the Similitudes...were probably written before 100...or 70 probably evidence for non-Christian reflection on the figure from Dan. 7-13 (p 141).

Nevertheless, by the middle of the first century, a number of prophets or prophet/pretenders appeared. Horsely says "The messianic and prophetic movements of late Second Temple times constituted widespread, organized popular resistance to Roman imperial rule" (p 294) leading to the Jewish revolt.

J. D. G. Dunn's essay is outstanding. He brings together all the various strands of thought within Judaism that were seen as Messianic in Jesus. The Suffering Servant, the Son of Man in Daniel, a long history of prophets and signs, including the promise to bring together all the lost tribes.

He points out that the centuries old "literary model envisages strata of tradition...(but),tracing the linear descent of tradition down through successively elaborated layers" (p 371) is being overthrown. It was a rickety house of cards now tumbled over and to be abandoned.

Much more plausible is the new research into oral transmission. Oral tradition is the most important new idea in biblical scholarship. "In oral tradition we have to do with themes and formulae and core material which often remains constant while quite a wide range of variations are played on...tradition history analysis...need not consist solely of pressing back through different variations but can focus immediately on the more constant material. For the probability is that the more constant material is the living heart of the earliest recollections of Jesus" (p 371).
C'est magnifique!!! C'est formidable!!! And several of the participants were at the Library of Congress Symposium on the Dead Sea Scrolls, i believe in 1993-1994.

ISBN: 0800625633