For the past forty years, but for only the first time in history, Christian scholars fluent in Hebrew and living in the land of Israel have collaborated with Jewish scholars to examine Jesus' sayings from a Judaic and Hebraic perspective. The result of this research confirms that Jesus was an organic part of the diverse social and religious landscape of Second Temple-period Judaism. He, like other Jewish sages of his time, used specialized methods to teach foundational Jewish theological concepts such as God's abundant grace. Jesus' teaching was revolutionary in a number of ways, particularly in three areas: his radical interpretation of the biblical commandment of mutual love; his call for a new morality; and his idea of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Jerusalem Studies in the Synoptic Gospels, the initial volume, focuses on the Passion Narratives in a search for the Historical Jesus. It also reexamines the synoptic problem in light of recent historical and archaeological research. The volume represents the first attempt by members and associates of the Jerusalem School to apply collectively the methodology pioneered by Robert Lindsey and David Flusser. Included in the volume is the final article written by the late Professor Flusser,
The Synagogue and the Church in the Synoptic Gospels.
R. Steven Notley earned his Ph.D. in the History of Religions at the Hebrew University (1993). He has recently completed (with Ze’ev Safrai) his English translation of Eusebius’ Onomasticon and is currently completing (with Anson Rainey)
The Sacred Bridge: An Historical and Geographical Atlas to the Biblical World (Carta Jerusalem, 2005). Currently he is a Professor of Biblical Studies at the New York City campus of Nyack College.
Marc Turnage is completing his Ph.D. from the University of Durham. Along with his article in the present volume, “Jesus and Caiaphas: An Intertextual-Literary Evaluation,” he has a number of other forthcoming publications. Since 2003, Turnage has been lecturing at the Southwest Missouri State University and Evangel University, teaching courses in the fields of Judaism and Early Christianity and ancient languages.
Brian Becker has been director of the Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research since 2000. His current role as CEO of a successful DotCom company has afforded the opportunity to work with the members of the Jerusalem School. Under his leadership, the organization has doubled in size and shifted the focus of the Jerusalem School from internal research to a concerted effort to engage the academic community of New Testament Studies.
This fascinating collection of essays demonstrates the fruitfulness of ‘collaboration between Jewish and Christian members’ of the School as they continue to study the Synoptic Gospels together. Robert L. Webb, McMaster University,
Journal for the Study of the Historical JesusThere is little doubt that, like the bird cage in Alexandria, this devoted beit knesset of properly equipped scholars has produced a perceptive set of essays, and it will be interesting to see the further insights that future volumes in this series will almost certainly produce. Nina Collins, Leeds University,