From Jesus to the Church
Did Jesus intend to found a church separate from Judaism? Who were the very first followers of Jesus? And how did a clash between two families--the family of Jesus on one hand and the family of high priest Annas and...
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Did Jesus intend to found a church separate from Judaism? Who were the very first followers of Jesus? And how did a clash between two families--the family of Jesus on one hand and the family of high priest Annas and their aristocratic allies on the other--eventually lead to the formation of Christianity?
In this study, best-selling author Craig A. Evans looks at how a tumultuous chain of events from 30-70 CE--beginning with Jesus's entry into Jerusalem and subsequent crucifixion and ending with the destruction of the temple--led to the separation between the followers of Jesus and other Jews. Topics include the following: 1) whether Jesus actually intended to found the Christian Church; 2) the ways in which Jesus's proclamation of the "Kingdom of God" relate to the Christian Church; 3) the role of James, brother of Jesus, in the new movement in Jerusalem; 4) the tension between James and Paul in the matter of law and works; 5) the conflict between the families and followers of Jesus and those of the high priest Annas before the destruction of the temple; and 6) the aftermath of the Jewish rebellion, whereby the Church moved away from its Jewish roots. An appendix further explores the reasons behind the rift between the Jesus movement and the synagogue. This fascinating volume is suitable for historical Jesus and early church studies, along with anyone else interested in learning about the very first followers of Jesus.
Craig A. Evans (Ph.D., Claremont) is Payzant Distinguished Professor of New Testament and director of the graduate program at Acadia Divinity College in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. He has written extensively on the historical Jesus and the Jewish background of the New Testament era. His books include Jesus and His Contemporaries: Comparative Studies, Luke (New International Bible Commentary), Mark (Word Biblical Commentary), Jesus and the Ossuaries, Fabricating Jesus and Ancient Texts for New Testament Studies. His edited volumes include (with Bruce Chilton) Studying the Historical Jesus: Evaluations of the State of Current Research, Dictionary of New Testament Background, From Prophecy To Testament and (with John Collins) Christian Beginnings and the Dead Sea Scrolls.
He has recently served on the advisory board on The Gospel of Judas for National Geographic Society and has appeared frequently as an expert commentator on network television programs, such as Dateline, and in various documentaries on the BBC, the Discovery Channel and the History Channel. He most recent work is Matthew (New Cambridge Bible Commentary.)