Meaning of Jesus, The

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9780060608767: Meaning of Jesus, The

Was Jesus born of a virgin? Did he know he was the Messiah? Was he bodily resurrected from the dead? Did he intentionally die to redeem humankind? Was Jesus God?

In The Meaning of Jesus two leading Jesus scholars with widely divergent views go right to the heart of these questions and others, presenting the opposing visions of Jesus that shape our faith today.

In alternating chapters, Marcus Borg, the most popular revisionist voice on Jesus and a member of the Jesus Seminar, and N. T. Wright, the most prominent standard–bearer for the traditional stance and an outspoken critic of the Jesus Seminar, present their views of who Jesus was, what he taught, and what he did.

Candid, spirited, and thoughtfully debated, this compelling discourse will stimulate fresh ideas and intense dialogue among anyone concerned with what it means to be a Christian today.

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Review:

The Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions is a theological remix of the old Cole Porter song "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off." In alternating chapters, the (mostly) liberal Marcus J. Borg and the (mostly) conservative N.T. Wright consider the major questions of the historical-Jesus debate that has dominated biblical studies in the 1990s. Borg and Wright agree that Jesus was the Christian messiah and preached the Kingdom of God, but they disagree about the Virgin birth, the purpose of Jesus' death, the issue of his bodily resurrection, and the question of his divinity. The Ping-Pong structure of this book and the fastidious politeness with which the authors treat one another sometimes give The Meaning of Jesus a tomato/tomahto, potato/potahto bounciness, but the project is nevertheless worthy: this is a simple, clear orientation to some of the most important biblical questions of our time, and a record of a lively and loving friendship between two of the best Christian scholars alive. --Michael Joseph Gross

About the Author:

Marcus J. Borg is canon theologian at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Portland, Oregon, and was Hundere Distinguished Professor of Religion and Culture at Oregon State University. Described by the New York Times as "a leading figure in his generation of Jesus scholars," he has appeared on NBC's The Today Show and Dateline, ABC's World News, and NPR's Fresh Air. He is the author of the bestselling books Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time, The Heart of Christianity, Reading the Bible Again for the First Time, The God We Never Knew, Jesus, Speaking Christian, and The Evolution of the Word. His blog appears on the Progressive Christian Channel of Patheos.com.



N. T. Wright is the former bishop of Durham in the Church of England and one of the world's leading Bible scholars. He is now severing as the Chair of New Testament and Early Christianity at the School of Divinity at the University of St. Andrews; he has been featured on ABC News, Dateline, The Colbert Report, and Fresh Air. Wright is the award-winning author of The Case for the Psalms, How God Became King, Simply Jesus, After You Believe, Surprised by Hope, Simply Christian, Scripture and the Authority of God, and The Meaning of Jesus (coauthored with Marcus Borg), as well as translator for The Kingdom New Testament.

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