Customer Review

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stimulating and respectable despite flaws, 30 Mar. 2008
This review is from: Lost Religion of Jesus: Simple Living and Nonviolence in Early Christianity (Paperback)
Clearly Akers has his personal biases, but I think his effort is mainly refreshing and helpful. Concerning the Bible, Akers emphasizes that Jesus presented himself as a Jewish reformer, who viewed the Bible critically. For Jesus, real faith required discerning a primary message among the Bible's diverse accounts of wars, visions, laws and traditions. He made selective judgements of what to emphasize or ignore, which made him so highly controversial to the Pharisaical legalists or defenders of scriptural inerrancy in his time.

Akers also claims that Jesus was a vegetarian. I was not convinced either that this was true, or that it was important to the early Jewish Chrisitans. But related to this, Akers points out something which does seem important: Jesus opposition to animal sacrifice. And here, Akers emphasizes a side of the Gospel accounts that might shock many later Christians -- that Jesus was almost violently opposed to making his religion a cult of sacrifice for sin. Like John the Baptist he believed in baptism as a rite of repentance and renewal, but not in sacrifice or killing to buy freedom from guilt.

For his well presented arguments on how Jesus took the Bible, and how he viewed the whole notion of sacrifice, I think Akers' book would be stimulating for any Christian study or discussion group.

--author of Correcting Jesus: 2000 Years of Changing the Story
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Mar 2011 08:10:12 GMT
Last edited by the author on 23 Mar 2011 08:12:42 GMT
Thank you for a stimulating review.

I became interested in 'simple living' when I suffered a series of upsets in one year (I became ill, lost my job, my wife, my home & nearly became bankrupt). I suddenly found myself with very little to live on & wondered how I might live a simple. but, happy life.

It looks as if this book will be very interesting. I have purchased a copy & may review it later.

For now, I thought it might be helpful to say:

[1] Jesus was not vegetarian. He was Jewish & ate a Passover meal (which is lamb) with the Apostles at the Last Supper (Luke 22:8).

[2] Jesus healed a man & commanded him to make the offering required by the Jewish law. This suggests that he followed the Jewish laws of sacrifice. Isaiah quotes the Lord: "What makes you think I want all your sacrifices?" (Isaiah 1:11) which implies that God was fed up of sacrifices. Jesus was Himself a sacrifice (for once & for all) for sins; &, given the quote in Isaiah, you could make a case that He opposed sacrifices, but, it's not conclusive.

Still, I'm only human, maybe I've missed something.

If anyone has any better evidence perhaps they could comment here & I have requested to receive an e-mail if they do. I'm always interested in alternative points of view.

God bless.

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Jun 2012 00:44:34 BDT
Thanks a lot Mr. Happyone, for your good and honest note. I don't know if Jesus was a vegetarian. But it seems he thought people could forgive each other directly, which angered the sacrifice-for-sin-requiring priesthood.
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