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The Mythmaker Hardcover – 1998

4.3 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 238 pages
  • Publisher: Barnes & Noble Books (1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0760707871
  • ISBN-13: 978-0760707876
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.5 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,050,652 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to get this book second hand from Canada, but it came earlier than expected and would have been worth waiting longer for anyway. It gives an extremely plausible theory of the likelihood that Paul didn't just spread the message of Jesus to the Gentiles, but invented that message himself.It is written with great clarity, avoiding theological mumbo-jumbo,and is perfect for the person who does not believe in God, but would nonetheless like to know how Christianity became so successful that it prevailed as the dominant religion of history.
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Format: Hardcover
I am studying Christianity's origins and found various references to Hyam Maccoby's books on the topic so I read a few including The Mythmaker. Some critics say it is 'old hat' and extreme; others welcome it because of the Jewish perspective it provides. I am glad I read it because it is essential to consider what Jewish writers have to say about Jesus, Paul and Christianity. As a number of reviewers have said, some of his arguments lack sufficient evidence, but I think his main arguments are well supported and argued. I keep coming back to him after reading Christian writers to compare what they say. I will continue to do so because he helps reveal inadequacies in their knowledge and understanding.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellant read. Whilst I accept some of the criticisms about Maccoby apparently assuming some things and having something of an agenda, there can be little doubt that Paul's life and teachings leave a lot of puzzling questions. For example, as Maccoby draws out in the book,Paul showed no interest in the historical Jesus - neither his life or teachings.He seems to be interested only in a theological Jesus, who exists in the heavenly realms. Also the book draws out the very clear contradictions in the account in Acts of Paul's relationship with the Jerusalem Jesus movement and Paul's own account of this, for example in Galatians. A further piece of convincing evidence that Paul was not all that Christians have considered him to be, is his relationship with the high priest, a Sadducee (whereas Paul was supposed to be a Pharisee).Maccoby concludes that Paul was not a Pharisee and that he was a henchman of the high priest, no more than a kind of rogue policeman. Maccoby certainly gives his readers a lot to think about. It's a pity that most Christians will give it a very wide berth.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Mythmaker: Paul and the Invention of Christianity arrived as promised in good condition. The book
is well worth the read for the person who wishes to find out more about the background of the New Testament
and the very early Church that divorced its relationship with Judaism.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
All serious Christians should read this book. It puts Paul in a correct perspective. He never writes about the Gospel that he preached. Just messages to problem churches.
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