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Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony Hardcover – November 9, 2006
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"This book is a remarkable piece of detective work, resulting in a fresh and vivid approach to dozens, perhaps hundreds, of well-known problems and passages."
James D. G. Dunn
"Another blockbuster from the productive pen of Richard Bauckham. . . . Not to be missed!"
"It will be hard to take seriously future works on the origin of the Gospels that have not interacted with Bauckham. . . . Recommended."
About the Author
Richard Bauckham is Professor of New Testament Studies and Bishop Wardlow Professor at the University of St Andrews, Scotland. A Fellow of both the British Academy and the Royal Society of Edinburgh, his recent books include The Book of Acts in Its Palestinian Setting, published by Eerdmans.
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Top Customer Reviews
Readers who are not biblical historians or deeply immersed in the arguments he addresses, as I am not, might well find his theory persuasive, as I did, but then having no context in which to fully evaluate them. His treatment of Mark as a translator of St. Peter is convincingly argued. Unlike another commenter, I found his argument that the Gospel of John, the "Beloved Disciple" and the Book of Revelations were not written by St. John son of Zebedee, but by John the Presbyter or John the Elder well argued, interesting and persuasive. Again, though, a proper evaluation would require a deeper knowledge of the subject than I or a casual reader possesses.
I would remark that the author engages in some lines of argument and certain threads of reasoning that range widely from the subject at hand, and it is hard to believe such analysis contributes to the case he is making sufficient to justify the cost in readability. For that reason, parts of the book become obtuse and very dry, leaving the reader longing to return the point en main. In these instances, the author is more addressing the critics of his theories than the interests of the reader at large.
I finish the book nonetheless edified, finding the Gospels read in a way I had not heard them until now.
Richard Bauckham cleared that discomfort in 510 pages with basic arguments that make sense and technical arguments which are pretty tedious in nature--although, admittedly, I believe there are a few stretches in these technical arguments. Those stretches are not enough, in my estimation, to disregard what Bauckham has done. I believe, he has successfully rebutted form critical biblical studies and offered a much better alternative: seeing and reading the Gospel narratives as stories based upon eyewitness testimony (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) and as a story written by an eyewitness (John).
I believe every biblical scholar, pastor, priest, and interested Christian should take the time to wade through this tome.
He deals with the issues of historiography and hyper-skepticism that plague academia in this area of study.
A great contribution to New Testament Studies.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Strongly recommended for any student of the Gospels and their historicity.
This is must for any Christian library.