In this FREE eBook, examine fundamental questions about Jesus of Nazareth
Jesus is the central figure of Christianity, the world’s largest religion. As a teacher in first-century Galilee, he influenced thousands. Yet many questions today surround this enigmatic person. Where was he really born—Bethlehem or Nazareth? Did he marry? Is there evidence outside of the Bible that proves he actually walked the earth?
Drawn from articles in Biblical Archaeology Review and Bible Review, the Biblical Archaeology Society eBook Who Was Jesus? Exploring the History of Jesus’ Life examines the history of Jesus’ life, from where he was born, where he grew up and whether there is extra-Biblical evidence for his existence.
Did Jesus of Nazareth really exist? What’s the evidence outside of the Bible? In “Did Jesus Exist? Searching for Evidence Beyond the Bible,” Lawrence Mykytiuk examines Classical and Jewish writings from the first several centuries C.E. These records give us a glimpse of the person who would become the central figure in Christianity mere decades after his crucifixion.
Where was Jesus born? The Gospels of Matthew and Luke say that Jesus was born in Bethlehem. So why is he called a Nazorean and a Galilean throughout the New Testament? In “Jesus’ Birthplace and Jesus’ Home,” Philip J. King examines what the Bible actually says about Bethlehem, traditionally considered Jesus’ birthplace, and Nazareth, Jesus’ hometown.
What was Nazareth like during Jesus’ time? In “Has Jesus’ Nazareth House Been Found?” Ken Dark describes the excavation of an intriguing first-century “courtyard house” that may have been revered as Jesus’ boyhood home in the Byzantine period. Other archaeological evidence suggests that Jesus’ Nazareth was larger and wealthier than previously thought.
Modern movies and novels always want to marry Jesus off to one of his most prominent—and perhaps scandalous—female followers, Mary Magdalene. But Jesus’ own words suggest he wasn’t interested in such worldly matters, according to Birger A. Pearson in “Did Jesus Marry?”
Matthew, Mark and Luke say that Jesus was crucified on Passover, suggesting that the Last Supper was a Seder, a ritual meal held in celebration of this Jewish holiday. John indicates otherwise. Who’s right, if any of them? Jonathan Klawans examines this question in “Was Jesus’ Last Supper a Seder?”
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