Reza Aslan's "Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth" is a biography of Jesus of Nazareth, an effort to unravel the Jesus of history, a very difficult task due to the paucity of historical material other than the canonized Gospels. Azlan painstakingly dives into Roman historical archives and whatever written history available from the Hebrew sources.
I was always curious and confused about the contradictions of the various teachings and episodes of Jesus' life as told in the Gospels. Take for instance, the arrest of Jesus, his instructions to his apostles about spreading the word, abiding the Jewish law etc. This book by Aslan sheds light on many of these contradictions. As Aslan says, it is the result of two decaedes of research.
There were other narratives of Jesus's life by author's like Kazant Zakis', "Last Temptation of Jesus Christ", Jose Zaramago's "Gospel According to Jesus Christ" and even avowedly the Marxist and atheist Passolini's "Gospel According To St Mathew" follow more or less the canonized Christology of Paul. Reza Aslan's "Zealot" is definitely a better attempt to unravel Jesus the Nazarean. We must all thank him for that.
See "Link to External Source Article" below to read further.
There are many articles like this out in the world today, thanks to Reza Asla's book (cited above). Every time I read one of these, it is all I can do to keep from crying in frustration...
Because, as a Urantia Book reader, I have been privileged to become quite familiar with the real story of Jesus - his humanity and his divinity and the unfolding of his life from birth to death. As this article mentions, it is a confusing and contradictory picture that has survived these 2000-plus years since Jesus' incarnation here on Earth. All we really have are the Biblical narratives, and they are sparse, repetitive and yes - often confusing and condradictory.
In The Urantia Book, we are gifted with a highly detailed, eyewitness accounting of Jesus' entire life, and we learn why he did what he did, how he became aware of his divinity, and the methods he used to establish the Kingdom of God on earth. We learn the real reasons that he came here, where he was before his incarnation, and where he is now.
We see Jesus as a child, as an adolescent, as a youth, as a young man...we see him as a father-brother to his family after the death of his earth father, Joseph. We see him traveling extensively, we see his personal ministry and his public ministry, and the impact that he made on the people of his times.
We also learn how his simple message of love for God and service to man became garbled and distorted after his amazing resurrection from the grave...how the Christian Church came to be, and why it is failing to feed those who love the Master in these modern times.
All I can do in these blogs is to point the way, and invite those who share this author's frustrations to read and enjoy what The Urantia Book calls "the most important knowledge" that anyone can have - the knowledge of Jesus spiritual life, both before and after his consciousness of divinity.
I invite you to follow THIS LINK and see for yourself why The Urantia Book is the greatest revelation of God to mankind since Jesus walked the earth. Jesus WAS a revelation of God to man, and The Urantia Book restates and reviews his life for us - and so much more. It is a revelation for ALL mankind - not only Christians or even religious people, but ALL who will...