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The Gospels and Jesus (Oxford Bible Series) Paperback – May 16, 2002

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Editorial Reviews

Review

`'Dr. Graham Stanton is a renowned exegete and expositor of the Gospels. His The Gospels and Jesus has been a standard teaching tool since it was first published in 1989. I am delighted to have received the updated, second edition. It is a rare achievement for any author to comprehend, digest, and present such a vast amount of scholarly research in a simple, clear, and readable format. From my own standpoint, I am especially happy to see how the recent debates about the historical Jesus are judiciously reflected in the expanded treatment of the subject in this second edition, which deserves as much dissemination and use as the first.'' John P. Meier, University of Notre Dame

`Review from previous edition '...an excellent introduction to the present day study of the gospels. The style of the book is simple and attractive.' ' Irish Biblical Studies

`'The current updating of Graham Stanton's book will help it maintain its preeminent position as a valuable and authoritative introduction suitable for a wide readership.' ' Keith Elliott, University of Leeds

`'I continue to be impressed with how well the author has achieved the aim of covering so much material and so many issues within comparatively brief scope.'' US review of the proposed new edition

`'Graham Stanton's book is well-known and highly regarded as an excellent introduction to the study of Jesus and the Gospels. The author is of course a well-known and established New Testament scholar, well-placed to introduce students to the discipline and subject matter. A lot has happened in the field of New Testament studies in the eleven years since the book was first published, and it would be of great benefiit for the book to be revised to take account of these developments.'' UK review of the proposed new edition

`'an even better book than before, now presented in an enlarged and attractive format'' Morna D. Hooker,The Epwoth Review

`'he has again produced a work that is remarkable for the clarity of its argument and the breadth of its scholarship'' J.E. Tollington, Journal of the STudy of the Old Testament

About the Author

Professor Graham Stanton is Lady Margaret's Professor of Divinity at the University of Cambridge. His studied for his first degree in History and Theology in New Zealand, for a PhD in Cambridge, and has also studied in Zurich and Tubingen. He was a Professor of New Testament Studies at King's College, London, for 21 years, and was Editor of the journal, 'New Testament Studies', and of the associated monograph series (both published by CUP) for nine years. He is a General Editor of the International Critical Commentaries, the leading set of English-language commentaries on the Bible.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 324 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 2 edition (May 16, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199246165
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199246168
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 0.8 x 6.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Tanya on April 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
For anyone seeking a better understanding of why there are four Gospels in the New Testament, not just one, this book is excellent. Stanton, after a good introduction, delves right into the first section of the book: a systematic explanation of the purpose, focus, audience, and author of each Gospel. Stanton presents the reader with a clear outline of key differences among the Synoptics, and among the Synoptics and John.
After this excellent explanation, the second half of the book focuses on Jesus: his life, times, attitudes about himself, political situation, etc. I was very pleased with the clarity of Stanton's writing. It was scholarly, carefully crafted, and easy to understand. A fine basic reference text for anyone creating sermons or doing New Testament study.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A.H. on November 24, 2007
Format: Paperback
I used this book for a grad-level class in the Gospels/Acts. Overall, it is an excellent introduction. Stanton covers each Gospel individually and then spends the second half of the book discussing various topics/themes, such as Jesus' miracles, the Kingdom of God, John the Baptist, to name only a few. Stanton also brings in many modes of biblical interpretation including literary and social-historical (as well as the various sub-categories within each); moreover, he brings in other scholars' opinions on various aspects of the Gospels and discusses them according to their relevance within the field. For the chapters on the individual Gospels, Stanton first tries to determine (or at least discuss) the perspective of the evangelist (aka author), as well as the community from which these gospels may have been written. He then turns to the portrayal of Jesus within each. Some of the chapters lacked depth (particularly the chapter on the Kingdom of God), but, all-in-all, it is a good introduction from a well-balanced, scholarly point of view. Stanton clearly has his own theological stance, but he also obviously tries to take other scholars' offerings into consideration and give the reader an overview from which she or he may make her/his own decision. You will probably want to supplement this with more in-depth material on each Gospel (for instance, articles would be an excellent choice...or commentaries such as the Anchor Bible series). However, this would be an excellent text for the classroom and Bible studies alike.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By W. Cheung on July 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
Very well written by the late Professor Graham Stanton (who was Lady Margaret's Professor at Cambridge from 1998 to 2007), this book starts stunningly with an analysis of the two versions of the Lord's Prayer so as to illustrate how to study the gospels via literary and redaction critism, amongst other veins. It then expounds, through a lot of examples and quotations, the various themes and ethos of each of the four gospel/evangelist. A brief chapter is devoted on the apocryphal gospels and it explains clearly and convincingly why these are not included in the canon - meanwhile, the striking similarities of the four canonical gospels are highlighted.

The second half of the book assesses the character and thoughts of Jesus carefully. Again, lots of examples and quotations are used - topics explicated include the relationship between Jesus and John the Baptist (e.g. in John's Gospel, it is not clear whether John actually baptized Jesus); the Kingdom of God (e.g. the first Beatitude puts the Kingdom of God in the present, the next two are in future tense); miracles; what Jesus thought of himself; and why he was executed.

The highlight of the book is in its final pages (pp. 296-299). It attempts to answer the questions why Jesus was worshipped as divine after Easter, and why Paul and the others spreaded his teachings to the Gentiles, again after Easter. I will not reveal the spoiler here.

Thoroughly enjoyable. Five stars.
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12 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Stanislao Esposito VINE VOICE on September 21, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book was used for one of my undergrad classes on the gospels. It's a very good introduction, indeed. It covers the basics keeping in mind Jesus. The language is very clear and the author doesn't go into too many details, which is a good thing. The book belongs to a series that follow the same guidelines. If yuo're looking into deepening your understanding of scriptures but are afraid of the amount of books that are out there... start with this one.
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