344 Book Reviews / Biblical Interpretation 19 (2011) 337-356 © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2011 DOI: 10.1163/156851508X284737 e Misunderstood Jew: e Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus . By Amy-Jill Levine. San Francisco, Harper, 2006. Pp. 250. A major achievement of the so-called “ird Quest” of the historical Jesus has been the exploration of Jesus’ Jewish identity, including his social and religious location(s) with- in the spectrum of ﬁrst-century Jewish society and the parallels between his message and that of other Jewish leaders of his era. Recognition of Jesus’ Jewishness, howev- er, has implications not only for historical Jesus researchers and theologians. Amy-Jill Levine’s book is a passionate, witty, and compelling attempt, not to prove Jesus’ Jew- ishness—this is beyond dispute—but to consider what Jesus’ Jewish identity might mean for ordinary Christians and Jews today. e book expresses her conviction that Jesus, if truly understood as a ﬁrst-century Jew, can be a bridge between Jews and Christians and not the wedge that divides them. e book’s introduction provides some autobiographical comments, enough to satisfy the curiosity of those curious about why a Jew would study Jesus and the New Testament. e ﬁrst chapter, “Jesus and Judaism,”
Biblical Interpretation – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2011
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