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Whose Historical Jesus?

Edited by William E. Arnal & Michel Desjardins
Subjects Religion
Series Studies in Christianity and Judaism Hide Details
Paperback : 9780889202955, 352 pages, May 1997
Ebook (EPUB) : 9780889203846, 352 pages, October 2010

Table of contents

Table of Contents for
Whose Historical Jesus? edited by William E. Arnal and Michel Desjardins

Preface | Michel Desjardins, Wilfrid Laurier University

Part One:
Recent Concerns

The Mediterranean Jesus

1. The Mediterranean Jesus: Context | William Klassen, Emmanuel College

2. Itinerants and Householders in the Earliest Jesus Movement | John Dominic Crossan, De Paul University

3. Q and a Cynic-Like Jesus | Burton L. Mack, Claremont Graduate School

4. The Gospel of Thomas and the Cynic Jesus | John W. Marshall, Princeton University

The Galilean Jewish Jesus

5. The Galilean Jewish Jesus: Context | William E. Arnal, University of Toronto

6. Galilean Questions to Crossan’s Meditteranean Jesus | Seán Freyne, Trinity College

Socio-Rhetorical Interests

7. Socio-Rhetorical Interests: Context | Willi Braun, Bishop’s University

8. The Rhetoric of the Historical Jesus | L. Gregory Bloomquist, Université St. Paul

9. Cosmology and the Jesus Miracles | Wendy Cotter, Loyola University of Chicago

10. The Theological Importance of the “Third Quest” for the Historical Jesus | Halvor Moxnes, University of Oslo

Academic Engagement

11. Academic Engagement: Context | Sandra Walker-Ramisch, Carleton University

12. A Feminist Experience of Historical-Jesus Scholarship | Jane Schaberg, University of Detroit Mercy

13. The Historical Jesus and African New Testament Scholarship | Grant LeMarquand, Wycliffe College

Recent Concerns: Closing Thoughts

Recent Concerns: The Scholar as Engagé | Leif E. Vaage, Emmanuel College

Part Two:
Enduring Concerns

Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls

15. Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls: Context | Terence L. Donaldson, College of Emmanuel and St. Cloud

16. The Historical Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls | Wayne O. McCready, University of Calgary


17. Apocalypticism: Context | Dietmar Neufeld, University of British Columbia

18. Will the Reader Understand? Apocalypse as Veil or Vision in Recent Historical-Jesus Research | Edith M. Humphrey, McGill University

The Christ of Faith

19. The Christ of Faith: Context | Stephen Westerholm, McMaster University

20. Is the “Historical Jesus” a Christological Construct? | Barry W. Henaut, University of Toronto

Continuing Historical-Jesus Studies

21. Continuing Historical-Jesus Studies: Context | Robert L. Webb, Campion College

22. A Taxonomy of Recent Historical-Jesus Work | Larry W. Hurtado, New College

Enduring Concerns: Closing Thoughts

Enduring Concerns: Desiderata for Future Historical-Jesus Research | Paul Richardson, University of Toronto


Making and Re-Making the Jesus Sign: Contemporary Markings on the Body of Christ | William E. Arnal, University of Toronto



Subject Index

Modern Authors Index

Ancient Sources Index


The figure of Jesus has fascinated Western civilization for centuries. As the year 2000 approaches, eliciting connections with Jesus’ birth and return, excitement grows — as does the number of studies about Jesus. Cutting through this mass of material, Whose Historical Jesus? provides a collection of penetrating, jargon-free, intelligently organized essays that convey well both the centrality and the complexity of deciphering the historical Jesus.

Contributors include such eminent scholars as John Dominic Crossan, Burton L. Mack, Seán Freyne and Peter Richardson. Essays range from traditional to modern and postmodern and address both recent and enduring concerns. Introductions and reflections augment these lucid essays, provide context and help the reader focus on the issues at stake. Whose Historical Jesus? will be of interest to all who wish to understand the current controversies and historical debates, who want insightful critiques of those views or who would like guidance on the direction of future studies.


"William E. Arnal and Michel Desjardins have put together a valuable and substantive collection, providing essays from leading Canadian scholars, along with those from the U. S., Ireland, Scotland and Norway. It should be in every college, university and seminary library; anyone doing Jesus research needs to engage these fine contributions. I would also recommend it as a supplementary reader for advanced undergraduates, seminary and graduate courses on the ``Historical Jesus. "

- K.C. Hanson, Toronto Journal of Theology

". collection of thought-provoking and at times amusing essays. ..."

- Matt Davis, Books in Canada

"What distinguishes Whose Historical Jesus? is not only its reliable and nuanced map of the avalanche area, but the remarkable level of theoretical sophistication of its analysis -- not only describing the various differences that exist, but trying to give an account of those differences that show what is at stake for humanistic scholarship. It is also a mark of distinction that the essays are edited so that they engage in a genuine internal conversation rather than talking past each other, a feature that is partly due to labour of the editors, Arnal and Desjardins, and partly to the collegial atmosphere cultivated in the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies in its 1993 and 1994 meetings, where most of these papers were first presented. ...Arnal's retrospective (`Contemporary markings on the body of Christ') is practically worth the cost of the book itself. ...Throughout there is an effort to engage the best of Jesus scholarship with care and generosity and without the rancour that sometimes infects this field. "

- John S. Kloppenborg, Studies in Religion

"The strength of this volume is its diversity of voice, topic and form which allows it to be at once representative and venturesome, accessible and learned, Canadian and international, etc. I have used many of the essays successfully with both graduate and undergraduate students, either as representative samples of Historical Jesus Research or as welcome challenges to the usual fare. Warmly recommended. "

- Ian H. Henderson, ARC

"The volume deserves careful reading by all Jesus scholars. "

- Scot McKnight, The Catholic Biblical Quarterly

"There is hardly an unworthy essay in the lot and I should expect that Whose Historical Jesus? will soon win a place of distinction in the bibliography of historical Jesus scholarship. It is to the credit of the editors and contributors that the essays form a genuine conversation that is courteous, learned, and unmarked by the rancour that sometimes infects this field. "

- James H. Olthuis, University of Toronto Quarterly