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The Complete Gospels: Annotated Scholar's Version Paperback – January 1, 1995

3.8 out of 5 stars 47 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Before it released its provocative The Five Gospels through a commercial publisher (Macmillan) last year, The Jesus Seminar in 1992 published through its own house, Polebridge Press, The Complete Gospels, a more encompassing, collaborative effort providing fresh translations of the canonical Gospels, the non-canonical Gospels and the Sayings sources. This new revised and commercially published edition of The Complete Gospels moves this prior effort out of the academy and into the hands of a general readership interested in the ancient texts that have motivated the recent quests of scholars like Meier (A Marginal Jew), Crossan (The Historical Jesus) and Sanders (The Historical Figure of Jesus). In addition to the canonical Gospels, this work contains translations of Sayings Gospels like Q, the Gospel of Mary, the infancy Gospels of Thomas and James, fragmentary Gospels like the Egerton and the Secret Gospel of Mark. Here, accompanying the lively translations of each text, are incisive introductions and notes that provide glimpses of the social, historical and literary world occupied by Jesus and the early Christian writers. The dependence of one text upon another is demonstrated through the numerous cross-references. An in-depth glossary and brief essays elaborating key issues of scholarship, e.g., synoptic puzzles, etc., round out the collection. Combining an engaging commentary, lucid and energetic translation and accessible scholarship, this Complete Gospels equips any interested reader to join Meier, Crossan and Sanders in their quest for the historical Jesus.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

This new edition should become an indispensable tool for students of the Jesus tradition and others interested in the development and interpretation of Christian scripture. Gathered together in one volume are new English translations of all the known gospels--canonical and extracanonical, complete and fragmentary--from the first centuries of the Christian era. Each translation is preceded by a brief introduction and accompanied by extensive notes; all are cross-referenced to facilitate comparison. The Complete Gospels is the first phase of a new translation of the Bible from the ancient languages into American English as it is spoken and written in North America today. The translators are eminently qualified scholars who have worked independently of ecclesiastical control. The result is a lively, consistently accessible but sometimes surprising translation that allows diverse literary creations to speak with a variety of voices that gives fresh insight into the diversity of communities and personalities that composed them. Steve Schroeder --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Polebridge Press; 3rd Rev edition (January 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0944344496
  • ISBN-13: 978-0944344491
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #736,062 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By FrKurt Messick HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on June 25, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is an absolutely fascinating book.
This is a very important compilation, both from a scholarly and a popular perspective. It has only been within the past generation that dialogue and interest in how the Bible came to be the Bible has grown beyond the narrow confines of academic analysts and theorists, and into the mainstream discussion of churches and independent readers.
While most of the material in Robert Miller's `The Complete Gospels' is available elsewhere (and thus Miller is more an editor than an author), this is the first time that a concentrated effort has been made to bring together all of the texts and fragments of the known gospels from the early Christian era.
The contents are as follows:
--Narrative Gospels--
Gospel of Mark
Gospel of Matthew
Gospel of Luke
Signs Gospel
Gospel of John
--Sayings Gospels--
Sayings Gospel Q
Gospel of Thomas
Greek Fragments of Thomas
Secret Book of James
Dialogue of the Saviour
Gospel of Mary
--Infancy Gospels--
Infancy Gospel of Thomas
Infancy Gospel of James
--Fragmentary Gospels--
Gospel of Peter
Secret Gospel of Mark
Egerton Gospel
Gospel Oxyrhynchus 840
Gospel Oxyrhynchus 1224
--Jewish-Christian Gospels--
Gospel of the Hebrews
Gospel of the Ebionites
Gospel of the Nazoreans
--Orphan Sayings and Stories--
These are all newly translated into what has been dubbed the Scholars Version, or SV, by leading academic figures, from the original languages, which (in addition to the dominant Greek) includes Coptic, Latin, Aramaic and Hebrew. The SV text strives to be understandable in modern English idiom, and so avoids poetic nuance in favour of presenting the meaning in clearest language.
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Format: Paperback
This book and the scholarship that is behind it is finally giving much of humanity relief from the hard-core literalist interpretation of the gospels and the world. These scholars are definitely breathing new life into Christianity and are greatly aiding its transformation into a realistic religion.
The four main gospels are presented here in new translations, Mark, Luke, Matthew and John. There are some little things I don't like, such as the rendering of 'the Kingdom of God' as 'God's Imperial Rule'. But remember, the authors are doing what they can to be as true to history and the real meaning behind the words as possible.
There are extensive footnotes, and references given to other writings, chiefly the Old Testament. Other Gospels include the 'Signs' gospel, a listing of Jesus' miacles, and the Gospel of Q, which is more of a scholarly creation since it is a theoretical source for the common material in Luke and Matthew that is not in Mark. Also presented is the now-famous gnostic Gospel of Thomas, as well as another Greek Fragments of Thomas, the Secret Book of James, the Dialogue of the Savior, and the Gospel of Mary. Some think these are heretical because the church leaders didn't canonize them or condemned them, but everyone has to decide for his or herself. No one can decide for anyone else what is spiritually valid for them.
There are also the infancy Gospels of Thomas and James, and the Gospels of the Hebrews, Edionites, and Nazoreans, Other fragmentary Gospels included are the Gospel of Peter, the Secret Gospel of Mark, the Egerton Gospel, and some other items.
There is also a load of information about the times in which the gospels were written and methods the scholars use.
Overall, this book is a good start for anyone looking to investigate the wider range of scriptures that are out there. Do so with an open mind and you will surely find reward.
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Format: Paperback
This translation, called the Scholars Version, takes text from the original language, be it Greek, Herbrew, Aramaic, even Coptic, and brings it directly into modern American English. This method clarifies like no other translation I have ever read. The distinguished scholars who worked on this project succeeded in making in the four canonical Gospels exciting and understandable. In addition, many documents that had been lost for centuries are brought into the modern age. The Gospels of Thomas, Peter, Mary, the Hebrews, and others are presented from a historical prospective without comment on the content. That is left up to the reader. In addition, the Secret Book of James and other obscure documents reveal early Christian writings that will expose the reader to ideas and teachings that might conflict with the more common persecptions of Jesus' teachings. I highly recommend this book for anyone who continues to search for Jesus from both a spiritual and historical point of view. But please be warned that thi
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Format: Paperback
For three years I have used this book in an upper level college section on the historic Jesus. It works very well, once students understand the principles behind this new translation. The introductions and footnotes prove valuable for students, as do the resources at the back of the book. The translation provides fresh insight into the teachings, the historic milieu and the perspective of the gospel writers.
The only drawbacks are that the book does not include Acts in Luke/Acts, which I consider vital to understanding Luke.
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