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The Power Of Parable: How Fiction By Jesus Became Fiction About Jesus (2012)

by John Dominic Crossan(Favorite Author)
4.14 of 5 Votes: 3
0061875694 (ISBN13: 9780061875694)
review 1: As usual, Crossan is very clear about the evidence he uses to form his conclusions, which is one of the things I like best about his writing - he lays it all out for you so you are able to draw your own conclusions, which may differ from his. He examines individual parables from the old and new testaments; looks at entire books of the Hebrew bible as parables; and finally approaches each of the gospels as a parable challenging its readers. I got several new insights that made the book well worth reading.
review 2: This is an important book. Crossan makes a strong case for the parabolic character of the gospels. At the same time, he does not finally persuade me that "parable" is a satisfactory category for these powerful and persuasive christological narrattives
... more. What the author does accomplish most effectively, I think, is to highlight the distinctive concerns brought to the four canonical gospels by their authors. He seems to find it helpful to use the categories of "challenge" and "attack" parables to arrive at and justify these different theological thrusts. Especially thought-provoking is his view that Jesus himself, as a historical person, so thoroughly worked from a non-violent perspective that he never employed attack parables, while frequently using the challenge type. Ergo, he finds Mark and Luke-Acts more consistent with Jesus' own approach, and Matthew and John less so. At the same time, he provides what I am coming to consider the most helpful analysis on why the latter two moved into attack mode, and the pitfalls in the Luke-Acts approach. Jesus, he believes, launched a non-violent movement against Roman oppression and the complicity in that oppression of the Jewish religious establishment. Matthew represents the perspective of Jewish Christianity vis a vis the emerging post-Temple synagogue Judaism. Luke-Acts emerges from the perspective of a Gentile Christian who believes that Christianity ought to assume the special legal status in the Roman Empire previously accorded the Jews, who ought to lose it. John, Crossan argues--and fairly persuasively--arises from Samaritan Christianity, which explains, and to some extent justifies, its harsh view of "the Jews" especially in the events leading up to Jesus' crucifixion. I look forward to re-reading the book, and fully expect that many of Crossan's observations will find their way into my preaching and teaching in the coming lectionary cycles. less
Reviews (see all)
Enlightening and entertaining. This is a book I will reread with pleasure.
Crossan at his best. That's all that needs to be said.
Interesting but the analysis was way over my head.
exactly what I expect from Crossan...
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