Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Harry Smiley's Recommendation: The Last Week

My friend, Harry Smiley, likes to recommend books he read. Before Scripture class (we're working our way slowly through Exodus) last Sunday, Harry suggested that I take a look at Borg and Crossan's The Last Week: A Day-dy-Day Account of Jesus's Final Week in Jersulalem. Inasmuch as I'll be going to the lakehouse in Georgia for nearly two months this weekend, I was in our university library yesterday, stocking up on books, when I came across The Last Week in the "Popular Collection." "Hot dog!" I thought, "I won't have to buy this one!" And yesterday, while waiting to meet my daughter coming out of her summer music camp, I read the first chapter in a nearby park bench. The book is a dandy! It bristles with insights as to what is said (and unsaid, but clearly to be understood) in the retelling of what Jesus was passionate about at the time of what we now call Passion Week. Here's what one reviewer at www.amazon.com says:

If you are looking for well researched insights, interpretations, and translations of current and historical contexts for the meanings of biblical parables and perhaps more importantly the historical contexts of St. Mark's Gospel, read this timely and well researched interpretation of the Passion of Christ and the details related to the seven days from Palm (Passion) Sunday to Easter Sunday by Borg & Crossan. Whether you are researching or interested in the fundamental roots of Christianity or curious about the historical context of the Roman and Jewish framework of the times surrounding the events of Easter week you will not be disappointed by the scholarly research and interpretations
presented regarding the 'cipher' meanings embedded in St. Mark's account. I truly enjoyed the author's viewpoints expressed and this book is a welcome addition to the bookshelf of those who are interested in the probable nature of how these events transpired.

While I can't promise that I'll get the university library's copy back on time (I've found out from a friendly librarian how to extend my two-week reading time limit by phone), I will post now and then some of the good stuff Borg and Crossan make evident. Let me simply say for now that it's a timely book--lots about confronting imperial powers with the mind, spirit, and body of Christ, both in the first century and now.

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