Monday, 11 July 2011

Review: Understanding Jesus - Cultural Insights Into the Words and Deeds of Christ author Joe Amaral

Modern-day readers often bring their own presuppositions and assumptions to the reading of the Bible, not realizing how deeply their understanding of Christ's life and teachings is affected by a 21st-century worldview. 

In UNDERSTANDING JESUS, author Joe Amaral delves deep into Jewish history, societal mores, and cultural traditions, closing the gap created by geographical distance and over two thousand years of history. Using a chronological approach to the life of Christ, he guides the reader through significant events such as Jesus' birth, baptism, and crucifixion, pointing out illuminating details that that the Western mind would normally miss.

Amaral's premise is that to understand Jesus, we must understand the time and place in which he was born, the background from which he drew his illustrations, and the audience he spoke to. Throughout the book he explores specific terms, places, and events for their significance and shows how they add richness and meaning to the text. Topics include the connection between Jesus and John the Baptist, the annual Feasts and why they are important to modern Christianity, Jewish customs such as foot-washing, clean and unclean foods, paying tribute to political governments, and the significance of various miracles.

In UNDERSTANDING JESUS, Amaral draws back the curtain on a way of life that existed during the reign of the Caesars, and in doing so, reveals truths about the way we live more than two thousand years later, half a world away. [Goodreads]

Understanding Jesus: Cultural Insights Into the Words and Deeds of Christ
Canadian author Joe Amaral
publisher FaithWords Apr 7.11

How would we understand the words of Yeshua Jesus if we understood His culture? 
The impact of that culture on the meaning of what He said?
This is as fascinating and insightful a read from Canadian Joe Amaral as he is to hear in person.
I gained much by reading of what would have been commonly known phrases and idioms of speech from the time of Christ's teachings.   Excellent information on distinct cultural traditions and how they play into the meaning of scripture's metaphors.   Easy  to read, accessible and enjoyable all in one.

Highly recommended!

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