Jesus and the Gospels : The Great Courses: Christianity

  • by The Great Courses, Luke Timothy Johnson
  • Narrated by Professor Luke Timothy Johnson
  • Series: The Great Courses: Christianity
  • 18 hrs and 30 mins
  • Lecture

Publisher's Summary

For most of the last 2,000 years, questions about the figure of Jesus have begun with the Gospels, but the Gospels themselves raise puzzling questions about both Jesus and the religious movement within which these narratives were produced. Is it possible to shape a single picture from the various accounts of his life given us by these Gospels?
This far-ranging course examines not only the canonical Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John familiar to us from the New Testament, but also the many other, apocryphal narratives and literary works that have contributed to our perceptions of Jesus, Mary, and Christianity - all of which are encompassed by the word "Gospel." In these 36 engaging lectures, you'll discover the human Jesus that underlies many portraits we have.
After introducing you to the era's volatile mixture of Mediterranean culture, Greek ideals and realities, Roman governance, and the religion of Israel, Professor Johnson turns to the Gospels and provides close analyses of key lines of text, explanations of the significance of language and terminology, and overviews of important issues with which scholars have long grappled. You'll learn about the different issues of faith each Gospel emphasizes, as well as the real-world logistics of spreading that faith during the early Christian era.
But it is the figure addressed by the Gospels who dominates these lectures, sometimes in ways less familiar than the portrayals of Jesus we most often encounter. Beyond the portrayal in the synoptic gospels, you'll study what the apocryphal narratives have to say about the childhood of Jesus. Among other things, you'll also learn about the source of Roman Catholicism's doctrine of Mary and examine the 2nd century faith of Gnosticism.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Very good

What did you like most about Jesus and the Gospels?

The course was really interesting and very informative.


Have you listened to any of Professor Luke Timothy Johnson’s other performances? How does this one compare?

This was my first book by Professor Luke Timothy Johnson but I will be purchaseing more.


Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

No, but I thought the course overall was excellent.


Any additional comments?

Initially, I was a little sceptical generally about these courses. However, having now completed Jesus and the Gospels I was gratified to find that it fulfilled my expectations. So much so, that I have persuaded my husband to Persue other Great Courses of interest to him. I would highly recommend this course to anyone.


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- Mary

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-07-2013
  • Publisher: The Great Courses