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eBook How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God?: Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus ePub

eBook How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God?: Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus ePub

by Larry W. Hurtado

  • ISBN: 0802828612
  • Category: World
  • Subcategory: History
  • Author: Larry W. Hurtado
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Eerdmans (November 2, 2005)
  • Pages: 246
  • ePub book: 1892 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1703 kb
  • Other: mobi doc doc txt
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Votes: 282

Description

Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death. This book is mis-titled. The title should be "When on Earth Did Jesus Become a God" because this is the question Hurtado answers.

Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death. Reverence for Jesus among early Christians. He actually says very little about "how," other than telling us that it was due to "powerful revelatory experiences.

Reverence for Jesus among early Christians, notes Hurtado, included both . Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged.

Reverence for Jesus among early Christians, notes Hurtado, included both grand claims about Jesus' significance and a pattern of devotional practices that effectively treated him as divine. This book argues that whatever one In How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death. Reverence for Jesus among early Christians, notes Hurtado, included both grand claims about Jesus' significance and a pattern of devotional practices that effectively treated him as divine.

Home Browse Books Book details, How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? .

Home Browse Books Book details, How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Historical. How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus. I am pleased that Herr Deichmann's opening address for the lecture series is included in this book (see appendix 1). The central aim includes promoting the academic study of the New Testament in Israel as an important historical resource for analysis of Jewish religion of the Roman period. I am pleased to have been invited to participate in the formative stages of the program, and I will watch with much interest the further developments.

Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus. Mapping out the lively current debate about Jesus, Hurtado explains the evidence, issues, and positions at stake. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, Nov 2, 2005 - Religion - 234 pages. The follow-up to Hurtado's award-winningLord Jesus Christ (2003), this book provides compelling answers to queries about the development of the church's belief in the divinity of Jesus.

240 pages, softcover. Eerdmans Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged . How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus (9780802828613) by Larry W. Hurtado. Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death. This book argues that whatever one makes of such devotion to Jesus, the subject deserves serious historical consideration.

Space missions offer new perspectives of the Earth and the planets

June 2007 · The Expository Times. Space missions offer new perspectives of the Earth and the planets. In this paper, these are discussed philosophically, from a historical viewpoint, from the era of Ancient Greece to the present day. Mythical gods have been replaced, in human society, by concerns for the environment. In How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death.

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How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Historical Questions about Earliest Devotion to Jesus.

In How on Earth Did Jesus Become a God? Larry Hurtado investigates the intense devotion to Jesus that emerged with surprising speed after his death. Reverence for Jesus among early Christians, notes Hurtado, included both grand claims about Jesus' significance and a pattern of devotional practices that effectively treated him as divine. This book argues that whatever one makes of such devotion to Jesus, the subject deserves serious historical consideration. Mapping out the lively current debate about Jesus, Hurtado explains the evidence, issues, and positions at stake. He goes on to treat the opposition to -- and severe costs of -- worshiping Jesus, the history of incorporating such devotion into Jewish monotheism, and the role of religious experience in Christianity's development out of Judaism. The follow-up to Hurtado's award-winningLord Jesus Christ (2003), this book provides compelling answers to queries about the development of the church's belief in the divinity of Jesus.

Comments

salivan salivan
This book is mis-titled. The title should be "When on Earth Did Jesus Become a God" because this is the question Hurtado answers. He actually says very little about "how," other than telling us that it was due to "powerful revelatory experiences." Despite the misnomer, however, I still give the book five stars because answering "when" as effectively as he does is a big, big deal.

The core of the book is Part I, consisting of four chapters. This material was first delivered as a series of lectures to Israelis at Ben-Gurion University. Two appendices by sponsors of the lectures give the context for the series (better communication between Jews and Christians about areas of common historical interest). Part II is comprised of four stand-alone essays, originally published in various journals, brought together here because they each reinforce an aspect of the lectures' topic.

Hurtado takes an historical approach to the subject rather than a theological one. Thus he pays close attention to the practices disclosed in the New Testament and other documents of Second Temple Judaism. He is cautious in drawing conclusions and seldom, if ever, pursues red herrings. His goal is to demonstrate that veneration of Jesus to a godlike status came almost immediately in the wake of Jesus' resurrection. It could not have arisen decades later as a result of syncretic influences from Gentiles. Here, he has arrived at a conclusion and he presses it with indefatigable zeal. Scholars may quibble with the edges of his argument, but its core is unassailable: it was Jewish believers who first gave Jesus godlike devotion, not Romans, Greeks, or anyone else.

The chassis on which Hurtado builds his argument are the seven letters of Paul whose authorship is practically unquestioned by modern scholarship (liberal and conservative). Those epistles are Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Philippians, 1 Thessalonians, and Philemon. There is also broad scholarly consensus that these letters were written between 50 and 60 C.E. When read, these letters make reference to practices and perspectives which were commonly accepted among believers in Christ from Jerusalem to Rome at the time of the writing. Just a little investigation takes these practices and perspectives back to within weeks or months of the crucifixion of Christ. As I said above, Hurtado does not deal with these passages as a theologian would. Rather, he examines them as a historian. His circumspect writing style gives sufficient regard for opposing views. But in the end, Hurtado has the compelling evidence on his side. You cannot read those letters of Paul without acknowledging that he had to expend no energy whatsoever in convincing his recipients that Jesus was the most exalted being in heaven and on earth other than God Himself. Nor did he have to convince them to call upon Jesus, practically speaking, as if He was God. It was, as Hurtado would say, an "astonishing and unprecedented innovation" in Judaistic practice. And this exalted view of the resurrected Messiah was obviously well in place by the mid-1st Century, spearheaded entirely by Jews.

While I would not charge this book with any weaknesses, there are questions that this book, having made its case, has raised. I hope Hurtado and other scholars will address these questions, using Hurtado's work here as a foundation. Among these are:

How? That is, how did believers come to venerate Jesus so highly? What precisely was communicated in those "powerful revelatory experiences" that caused them to link Jesus' name with God's in an unprecedented (at least in degree) way? This would include delineation of the degree and quantity of difference applied when Jewish believers in Jesus went beyond the "principal agent" analogies. It would also include scriptural warrant, because we almost always see scripture employed to validate a revelatory experience to the receptee when we read the New Testament. Revelation would be "according to the scriptures."

What? What exactly was the level of veneration given to Jesus? Hurtado uses words like exalt, venerate, reverence, devotion, and worship in practically synonymous ways. There are shades of difference in at least some of these words and, along with knowing how believers came to regard the resurrected Jesus in such an esteemed way, it would be good to know exactly how esteemed - and did that level of estimation change at all before the close of the century? (That is, deal with the later canonical texts such as John as well as the early texts such as Paul - with regard to this point.)

In summary, Hurtado's book looks beyond the millennia that separate us from nascent Christianity and takes us directly into the 1st century, demonstrating to us in lucid ways when Jesus went from being a great prophet of Israel to being much more than its prophet. It was sooner, not later.
Zepavitta Zepavitta
In this outstanding sequel to his earlier book, Lord Jesus Christ, Larry Hurtado explains the enigma of how Jesus became an object of worship among his earliest Jewish followers. Hurtado is not an evangelist posing as a scholar but takes a secular and fact-finding approach in explaining this mystery which seems to have baffled so many modern liberal scholars.

Many modern scholars believe that the cultic devotion to Jesus developed over a long period of time in a gentile setting when Christianity became "Hellenized" and was influenced by pagan mystery cults. However, historical facts prove otherwise.

Hurtado demonstrates how the devotion to Jesus which made him an object of veneration and worship was a radical phenomenon which burst upon the scene immediately after the crucifixion among Jesus' earliest followers. It developed within the milieu of Judaism before the mission to the gentiles started. This book clearly demonstrates that the conviction that God raised Jesus from the dead to an exalted status in Heaven was already developed prior to Paul's conversion and long before gentiles had any influence on the faith.

Judaism has its own exalted human and heavenly figures such as Moses, Enoch, Melchizedek, and Michael, but these were only servants of God. The earliest followers of Jesus took a much more radical step in regard to Jesus. While Jesus was never God himself or even a second god, he was the only begotten Son of God who alone was worthy of worship and whose name was venerated above all other names.

Hurtado explains how there was never a conflict between the strict Jewish monotheism of Jesus' earliest followers and their veneration of Jesus. He uses the term "binitarian monotheism" to describe how they could remain monotheistic Jews and worship Jesus. In simple terms, to them, Jesus was the sole agent through which God acts and through which God receives glory. God chose to raise Jesus from the dead to an exalted status in Heaven. Jesus is God's chosen vessel and it is God's will and God's requirement that He be worshipped and glorified through Jesus.

Hurtado explains this by examining a key text in one of Paul's epistles which he believes did not originate with Paul. Philippians 2:6-11 is believed by some scholars to be taken from a very ancient ode or hymn which Paul had learned from those who preceded him in the faith and which he inserted into his epistle to illustrate the belief of how God glorified Jesus to a status worthy of worship and bestowed upon him a name above all other names by which God himself would be glorified.

Paul, by his own admission, was a devout Jew who had violently persecuted the followers of Jesus because of something which he felt was very repugnant about what they were espousing. This could only have been their veneration of Jesus who had been condemned and crucified as a criminal. Ironically, Paul was converted to the very same belief which he so zealously tried to stamp out.

In addition, Josephus' account of James the Just being stoned to death by the high priesthood in the absence of the Roman governor would make no sense if James was known as a pious law abiding Jew or if he was a rebel against Rome. Stoning was the ultimate punishment inflicted by Jews upon Jews who committed the most severe sacrilege against Judaism which were blasphemy and idolatry. The only charge by which James would have merited such a punishment was his belief and confession that Jesus had been raised from the dead and glorified in Heaven. This was later articulated by Hegesippus who was known as a member of the Palestinian Jewish Christian community and would have been privy to the traditions handed down by that community regarding James. Stephen's speech in Acts also preserves this pre-Pauline belief of Jesus being glorified in Heaven. The Book of Revelation, which could not have been influenced by Paul, clearly describes the vision of Jesus enthroned in Heaven and worshipped as the Lamb of God.

Hurtado suggests that the only explanation for this sudden and explosive conviction that Jesus had been raised from the dead to an exalted status in Heaven who would soon return to establish God's Kingdom on earth was due to strong visionary and revelatory experiences among his followers after his crucifixion. The gospel accounts of the transfiguration may actually reflect post-easter visionary experiences which were written back into the life of Jesus. In addition, many of the conflicts which Jesus had with his fellow Jews may have been motivated by and reflect the rejection of Jewish Christians by their fellow Jews. The gospel account of Jesus warning his disciples that they would be tried in the synagogues could only have been directed to a Jewish or Jewish Christian audience. The threat of being tried in a synagogue would be totally irrelevant to gentile converts.

Hurtado has done a masterful job in destroying the false wedge which many modern scholars try to drive between the New Testament and Jewish Christianity.
Light out of Fildon Light out of Fildon
Hurtado can barely contain his excitement and enthusiasm as he examines the belief that Jesus was/is divine that developed very quickly, very early in the days following his death. Hurtado's argument/explanation seems sensible and convincing. He has worked on this topic for more than twenty years. I have read this book carefully five times and underlined so many important parts that nearly every word is now underlined. Also let me say that I have read many books of theology, philosophy, religion, etc in the last thirty years and this is one of the best. I will read it again.