The Origins of Christianity and the New Testament
Blackwell Ancient Religions
1. Edition July 2021
288 Pages, Softcover
Wiley & Sons Ltd
In The Origins of Christianity and the New Testament, distinguished scholar Rebecca I. Denova explores how the first followers of Jesus arrived at their faith, the way their sacred texts developed into the New Testament, and how their movement eventually became the religion of Christianity. This accessible volume examines the concepts, beliefs, issues, and events that gave rise to institutional Christianity--providing readers with the historical context of the gospels of Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John, the Acts of the Apostles, the Book of Revelation, the letters of Paul, and other foundational New Testament documents.
Approaching the subject from the multidisciplinary perspective of Religious Studies, the author addresses topics including the ethnic and religious background of "Jesus the Jew," the New Testament's different portraits of Jesus, the genesis of Christian concepts such as the divine incarnation and "second coming" of Jesus, Paul the Apostle's contributions to Christian dogma, how ancient Judaism, Greco-Roman culture, and early philosophy was incorporated into the Christian tradition, and more.
Containing maps, timelines, figures of archaeological sites, a brief history of ancient Judaism, and a wealth of pedagogical features, The Origins of Christianity and the New Testament is an excellent textbook for all undergraduate and graduate courses in the study of ancient Christianity, as well as lay readers with interest in tracing the roots of the Christian faith.
I Studying the Historical Jesus 1
II The History of Israel 17
Excursus I Introduction to the Gospels 45
III The Gospel of Mark (The Apocalyptic Jesus) 51
IV The Gospel of Matthew ("The New Moses") 71
V The Gospel of Luke (The Compassionate Jesus) 93
VI The Acts of the Apostles 109
VII The Gospel of John ("The Stranger from Heaven") 129
Excursus II Historical Anomalies in the Trial(s) and Crucifixion in the Gospels 143
Excursus III Jesus and Women in the Gospels 153
VIII Paul, the "Apostle to the Gentiles" 161
IX Paul and the First Christians 181
Excursus IV Women in the Pauline Communities 197
X Other New Testament Documents 201
XI The Book of Revelation 213
Excursus V The Legacy of Jewish-Christian Relations 235
Dr Denova has travelled widely in the Mediterranean Basin, exploring archaeological sites as part of her research of the ancient world. She is the author of several books including Greek and Roman Religions.