The Quest for the Historical Jesus and the Origins of Christology



2.1 Primary Texts

The New Testament (Greek text or any modern translation–I like the RSV)

The Gospel of Thomas (translations available in the volumes edited by Cameron, Layton, and Robinson in sections 0.1.6-0.1.7. Stevan Davies has a translation of the Gospel of Thomas by Stephen Patterson and Marvin Meyer online)

The Apostolic Fathers (see section 0.1.8 and the online translations archived in the Christian Classics Ethereal Library)

2.2 Secondary Literature

Note: the literature on the historical Jesus and the origins of the worship of Jesus is bewilderingly vast. The list below is an attempt to survey the range of responsible opinion and to include both technical and (a few) popular studies. A comprehensive bibliography would be many times the length of this one. I am grateful to members of the Crosstalk online discussion group for their suggestions and their criticisms of an earlier version of the list of mongraphs. The annotations note popular works as well as old classics now primarily of historical interest [i.e., presenting views that are outdated]. See also section 0.3 on divine mediators and mediation–it was sometimes difficult to decide what should go there and what should go here.

A good place to begin is with the following articles in the _Anchor Bible Dictionary_ vol. III. The article by Bauckham is especially relevant for our purposes.

Ben F. Meyer, “Jesus Christ,” 773-96
N. T. Wright, “Quest for the Historical Jesus,” 796-802
John Riches, “The Actual Words of Jesus,” 802-4
Marcus J. Borg, “The Teaching of Jesus Christ,” 804-12
Richard J. Bauckham, “The Worship of Jesus,” 812-19

A representative list of monographs:

Margaret Barker, _The Risen Lord: The Jesus of History as the Christ of Faith_ (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1996)

Rudolph Bultmann, _Jesus Christ and Mythology_ (New York: Scribner, 1958)

P. M. Casey, _From Jewish Prophet to Gentile God: the Origins and Development of New Testament Christology_ (Cambridge: Clarke, 1991)

John Dominic Crossan, _The Historical Jesus: the Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant_ (San Francisco, Ca.: HarperSanFrancisco, 1993)

John Dart, _The Jesus of Heresy and History: the Discovery and Meaning of the Nag Hammadi Gnostic Library_ [Includes a lightweight and very user-friendly, but accurate, treatment of historical Jesus issues]

Stevan Davies, _Jesus the Healer: Possession, Trance, and the Origins of Christianity_ (London: SCM, 1995)

James D. G. Dunn, _Christology in the Making: a New Testament Inquiry into the Origins of the Doctrine of the Incarnation_ (London: SCM, 1980)

Paula Fredriksen, _From Jesus to Christ: New Testament Images of Jesus_ (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988)

Reginald Fuller, _Foundations of New Testament Christology_ (New York: Scribners, 1965)

Charles W. Hedrick (ed.), _The Historical Jesus and the Rejected Gospels_, _Semeia_ 44 (1988)

Martin Hengel, _The Son of God: The Origin of Christology and the History of Jewish Hellenistic Religion_ (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1976)

Luke Timothy Johnson, _The Real Jesus: the Misguided Quest for the Historical Jesus and the Truth of the Traditional Gospels_ ([San Francisco, Ca.: HarperSanFrancisco, 1996)

Burton L. Mack, _A Myth of Innocence: Mark and Christian Origins_ (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1988)

I. Howard Marshall, _I Believe in the Historical Jesus_ (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1977) [a basic treatment of the issues from a fairly conservative perspective]

John P. Meier, _A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the Historical Jesus_ (2 vols.; New York: Doubleday, 1991, 1994)

Carey C. Newman, _Paul’s Glory-Christology: Tradition and Rhetoric_ (Leiden: Brill, 1992)

James M. Robinson, _Trajectories Through Early Christianity_ (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1971)

E. P. Sanders, _Jesus and Judaism_ (London: SCM, 1985)

Elizabeth Sch<“u>ssler Fiorenza, _Jesus: Miriam’s Child, Sophia’s Prophet. Critical Issues in Feminist Christology_ (London: SCM, 1995)

Albert Schweitzer, _The Quest of the Historical Jesus: a Critical Study of Its Progress from Reimarus to Wrede_ (3rd ed.; London: Black, 1945) [A classic, mainly of historical interest, published originally in German, first edition in 1910]

Morton Smith, _Jesus the Magician_ (London: Gollancz, 1978)

David Friedrich Strauss, _The Life of Jesus Critically Examined_ (London: SCM, 1973) [English translation of the first serious attempt at a critical reconstruction of the life of Jesus, first published in German in 1840. Mainly of historical interest.]

Charles H. Talbot (ed.) _Reimarus: Fragments_ (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1970) [An eighteenth century attempt to look at Jesus historically. Mainly of historical interest.]

W. Barnes Tatum, _In Quest of Jesus: A Guidebook_ (Atlanta, Ga.: John Knox, 1982) [A good popular summary of historical Jesus scholarship up to the early 1980s]

Gerd Theissen & Annette Merz, _The Historical Jesus: A Comprehensive Guide_ (ET, London: SCM, 1998)

Geza Vermes, _Jesus the Jew: A Historian’s Reading of the Gospels_ (London: SCM, 1983)

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