21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
An odd bit of intrigue,
This review is from: The Messiah before Jesus: The Suffering Servant of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Hardcover)
The Messiah Before Jesus is a new anomaly in Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament studies. Israel Knohl is one of the many authors to propose an uncommon unheard of idea. The book is primarily about certain Qumran documents, the Thanksgiving Hymns, namely, the 'Self-Glorification Hymn.' His work is somewhat speculative, and rests on a number of historical assumptions. I'm not saying that this automatically makes it incredible, since most of history IS reconstruction. But for example, this Scroll theory heavily lies on the Sectarian Hypothesis regarding the Essenes inhabiting Khirbet Qumran. What I found interesting is his new historical insight on the book of Revelation (St. John's Apocalypse) and its historical basis in Roman history and connection to Qumran. Knohl's thesis is another which robs Jesus Christ of his orthodox "uniqueness." It views him as the successor to Menahem (the Essene's messiah) in a chain of messiahs that would continue even after Christ. So essentially, he disagrees with the historians and at the same time the Christians. He does this by asserting that Jesus DID in fact regard himself as the Son of God and the Suffering Messiah. (which Christians also would do, but for theological agreement with Him) Historians regard things like the divine conception and self predictions of suffering and death as post-historical Christ interpolations of the earliest Christians. They assent this because they have come to believe that such concepts were alien to the first century Judaism that expected a military Messiah-conqueror. But this book sets out to establish a precursor to Jesus identified as Isaiah 53's 'Suffering Servant.' I must admit I have a feeling that I need to recommend this book to all of you because it contains some profoundly interesting historical data that you might not find anywhere else. Such as the Paraclete of John's Gospel. Find out for yourself!! Israel Knohl gave me satisfaction. The work is condensed to about 100 pages with a plethora of footnotes that take up a good portion of the book's thickness, but none the less could quite possibly provide key information as to understanding Christ's messianic position!
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Initial post: Feb 6, 2012 4:41:56 AM PST
Stephen Campbell says:
If this were true, the Trinity would be the Father, a male human Savior who is the Son, and a male human Comforter who is the Holy Spirit. Second, there would be no feminine principle in this Trinity. There would be no conceptual element as "spirit of Truth" is a conceptual element. What does the author say about Pentecost which furthers the notion that the Holy Spirit is a spirit and not a human entity?
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