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Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration [Paperback]

Pope Benedict XVI
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
RRP: £10.99
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Book Description

7 April 2008
In this bold, momentous work, the Pope - in his first book written as Benedict XVI - seeks to salvage the person of Jesus from recent 'popular' depictions and to restore Jesus' true identity as discovered in the Gospels. Through his brilliance as a theologian and his personal conviction as a believer, the Pope shares a rich, compelling, flesh-and-blood portrait of Jesus and incites us to encounter, face to face, the central figure of the Christian faith.

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Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration + Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives + Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week: from the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection Pt. 2
Price For All Three: £32.76

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (7 April 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747593787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747593782
  • Product Dimensions: 2.4 x 12.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 60,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'Will make many jaws drop ... a very remarkable book. Jesus was the genius. That is Ratzinger's message, and the luminous intelligence of the exegesis will prompt many to respond with an Alleluia' A.N. Wilson, Sunday Times 'A great deal to reread, to question and reflect upon. This is a theologian on top form. Indeed, this is the best of Professor Ratzinger's many fine books - so far!' Tablet 'Pope Ratzinger is remarkably successful. Jesus of Nazareth really is inspiring in places and will affect all but the most hardened cynics. It is all the better for being written in the usual, crystal-clear Ratzinger style' Irish Independent 'Lingers in the mind ... the Pope is a traditionalist, and his book is especially welcome because of it ... this study is lucidly and simply written, and with no sacrifice of intellectual gravitas or accessibility' Spectator

About the Author

On April 19, 2005, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected Pope Benedict XVI and became the 264th successor to Peter as the 'Vicar of Jesus Christ'. He may well be the most accomplished theologian to be elected Pope in modern times. From 1981 he spent over twenty years as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, a role often depicted as the 'defender of the faith'. Cardinal Ratzinger was also President of the Pontifical Biblical Commission and of the Preparatory Commission that codified the new Catechism of the Catholic Church, published in 1994.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Radical, readable, scholarly 3 Aug 2008
A friend recommended I read this book. Although I was initially sceptical, as I had not always been keen on Josef Ratzinger's actions before he became Pope, I thought I'd suspend my prejudice and take my friend's advice. I am so grateful I did. Basically, this book takes the fruits of several decades of scientifically-rigorous 'historical-critical' exegesis and asks "What does all this scholarship mean for the understanding a person of faith might have of Jesus of Nazareth?". The answer is at once clearly presented and utterly radical. There are sections in this book - for instance the treatment of the temptation narratives - which cannot be read without bringing you face to face with the very challenges Jesus posed his contemporaries. I found myself forced to a critical self-examination many times, and absolutely 'wowed' at others. I've already recommended this book to other close friends. If you really want to be exposed to Jesus as he meant to present himself, this book is a great place to start. I do hope that the Pope delivers on his stated desire in the introduction to produce a second volume, extending the present coverage (on the public ministry of Jesus) to the infancy, passion and resurrection narratives. If this present work is anything to judge by, that future volume will be an immensely valuable contribution.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yeshua and the Pope 30 Jan 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
With me being a Jew, and Ratzinger being a Pope as well as a German, you can imagine I was slightly reluctant to acquire this book but... curiosity killed the cat!

My reluctance and bias were in fact killed by the sheer brilliance and luminous style of this work: if the Pope is Christ's representative on Earth, then the Pope has created a masterpiece "autobiography". His message is clear and goes straight to the heart, presenting the reader with a Jesus who is incredibly real and divinely human, the whole text compelling and inspirational.

No complicate theology is offered (for this you should read Ratzinger's Faith: The Theology of Pope Benedict XVI), nor any sophisticate exegesis of biblical texts . His Holiness is lucid and crystal-clear in his exposition of facts and ideas, not at all homiletic or speaking ex-cathedra with the authority of his position. Actually, he states, in his foreword, "this book is in no way an exercise of the magisterium, but is solely an expression of my personal search 'for the face of the Lord'"

I believe the author has excellently succeeded. You have a Jew's word!
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ratzinger at his utter best 16 Feb 2008
By Aquinas
This is a book to be read and re-read so that the reader can imbibe the fruits of Pope Benedict's extraordinary intelligence and palpable holiness. I will list just four reasons, although there are many more.

1. The Pope enabled me to see again the decisive radicality of Jesus of Nazareth, the new Moses, whose authority caused many in Israel to react with alarm. I was particularly taken by his use of the work of Jacob Neusner, an american Rabbi, who has written a notable work on Jesus. What is remarkable is that Jacob Neusner sees clearly the "problem" with Jesus, a man who claims to have divine authority and who proclaims himself as the new "Torah" in the sermon on the mount. The Pope himself acknowledges his indebtedness to Jacon Neusner for enabling him to see Jesus afresh through the lense of judaism.

2. The Pope's dialogue with modern exegetes is particularly illuminating in that he draws from their work those golden nuggets which enable one to see Jesus in his historic reality. He also dialogues with those exegetes who have lost sight of Jesus by erroneously seeing Jesus in the gospels as some sort of modern liberal rabbi and underlines how such views do not sit squarely with the gospel accounts.

3. Critically, the Pope announces that he personally trusts the gospels and rejects Bultmann's rejection of the historicity of John's gospel. He shows how John sits squarely within the ambit of the faith and feasts of Israel.

4. Above all, amidst the scholarly analysis, the Pope shows himself as a man of immense faith. At certain parts of the book, I felt myself movingly humbled by being, so to speak, at the feet of a man, who is himself a great teacher. Long may he live so that we can enjoy the fruits of his labours.
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66 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jesus 10 July 2008
Most books that have been written about Jesus recently seem to have been written with the intention of shocking the religious community. This is the Popes book and so it stands to reason that he's obviously going to follow the Catholic line. However even in the early chapters he makes those other authors seem self indulgent and exposes Jeremy Bowen's dreadful BBC documentary Son of God for the lazy hatchet job that it was.

Ratzinger argues with ease that you cannot separate the historical Jesus from the religious figure because Jesus preached about God above all else. He includes enough historical detail to make the reader understand the context of Jesus said and what it meant to the Jews when he said it.

Ratzinger also clears up any misconceptions people have about Jesus' teaching. For example I never really properly understand his teaching about doing good on a Sunday until I read this book. The language Ratzinger uses isn't lofty or overly dramatic. He communicates his meaning clearly and you don't have to be a member of the clergy to get it. You really get the sense that Ratzinger is on his home turf here, he's not trying to argue his case, he doesn't need to, he's just explaining what he knows.

And so you a get clearer portrait of the Jesus that lived 2000 years ago. A figure that is more radical, life changing and shocking than perhaps any of those other authors can come up with.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
Pope Benedict XVI is a great writer and this book is not only a theological book. This is also a great story!
Published 14 days ago by Anja
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book
Pope Benedict really gets to know Jesus and tries to transmit that knowledge for the edification of his readers. Not a book to be rushed but to be read in small doses.
Published 2 months ago by A. C. Ireland
5.0 out of 5 stars read few pages and have a good think about what You've just read
To me one of the most important books I've ever read.
Don't just read it, study it slowly, read few pages and have a good think about what You've just read. Read more
Published 2 months ago by paul
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect transaction
All went as well as it could go with this order. No delay, item arrived in condition as described and I have no reason for complaint.
Published 5 months ago by Alma Abbs
Five INSPIRATIONAL Stars! During his time as Pontiff, Pope Benedict XVI brought decades of scholarly examinations of and meditations on Jesus Christ to fruition with this... Read more
Published 7 months ago by RSProds
4.0 out of 5 stars Good value
I purchased a hard copy for a friend as a gift and then decided to get one for myself, it was good value for money, although I had assumed that this was a hardcopy. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Destiny
5.0 out of 5 stars Well-Written
I bought this book for my husband.He finds it excellent. It's well written and easy to read.It's also well structured, being divided up into chapters according to topic. Read more
Published 18 months ago by rachel
3.0 out of 5 stars Hard work but worth it
I bought this along with the Holy Week volume for my husband, who finds he really needs to find a time when he can properly concentrate to read them. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Taponne
3.0 out of 5 stars Did not have me glued
I am not sure that this book is supposed to have the reader glued despite my title. On the contrary, I have a vast amount of respect for Pope Benedict/Ratzinger and believe him to... Read more
Published 18 months ago by fh1981
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read
I am so pleased with this purchase, good delivery, well packed and a good price. The book itself is a must read for all Christians. Looking to purchase vol 2
Published 19 months ago by lynda
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