This title offers an up-to-date picture of Jesus of Nazareth, highlighting the problems and pitfalls encountered in such a venture, and including a survey of current scholarship.
The introduction to this new guide sets out the sources (Graeco-Roman, Jewish and Christian), noting the problems connected with them, paying particular attention to the nature of the gospels, and the Synoptic versus the Johannine tradition.
There is a substantial section that will discuss scholarship on Jesus from the nineteenth century to the explosion of works in the present day, introducing and explaining the three different 'quests' for the historical Jesus.
Subsequent chapters of this title will analyse key themes in historical Jesus research: Jesus' Galilean origins; the scope of his ministry and models of 'holy men', particularly that of prophet; Jesus' teaching and healing; his trial and crucifixion; the highly contentious question of his resurrection; and, finally an exploration of the links between the Jesus movement and the early church.
Throughout, the (often opposing) positions of a variety of key scholars will be explained and discussed (eg.
Sanders, Crossan, Dunn, Wright, Brown). "Continuum's Guides for the Perplexed" are clear, concise and accessible introductions to thinkers, writers and subjects that students and readers can find especially challenging - or indeed downright bewildering.
Concentrating specifically on what it is that makes the subject difficult to grasp, these books explain and explore key themes and ideas, guiding the reader towards a thorough understanding of demanding material.