Judaism and Christianity are both religions of history and remembrance and rely on calendars and accurate chronologies to recall and reenact the signal events in their histories. The import of dividing the day and night, of knowing the moment of Sabbath and Lord’s Day, of properly timing Passover and Easter cannot be overstated. Throughout the history of both religions, these issues were central to worship and practice of religion and had far-reaching effects from messianism to prophecy. But their very centrality meant they were issues of controversy and debate. Roger Beckwith looks carefully at the Jewish and Christian records concerning calendar and chronology, compares, contrasts, and challenges rival solutions to these complex questions. His breath of research — from the ancient Near East to Qumran, from Josephus and Philo to the Maccabean writings, and from the points of view of Paul and Jesus to the Fathers of the church — and his focus on the more controversial issues of dating make
Calendar and Chronology an essential book for any serious scholar of history, liturgy, worship, and interpretation.
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Roger T. Beckwith, BD (1985), University of Oxford, DD (1992) Lambeth, is Librarian of Latimer House, Oxford. His publications on biblical, intertestamental and liturgical subjects include
The Old Testament Canon of the New Testament Church, and its Background in Early Judaism (
SPCK and Eerdmans, 1985).
...this is a fascinating book with a wealth of information, well argued ideas...'
Nina L. Collins,
Novum Testamentum, 1998.
Students of the Bible, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Judaism, Patristics and Liturgy.