The Good and Evil Serpent: How a Universal Symbol Became Christianized
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Number of Pages: 744
Vendor: Yale University Press
Publication Date: 2008
Dimensions: 9.25 X 6.13 (inches)
Availability: Usually ships in 24-48 hours.
Series: Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library
Resurrection: The Origin and Future of a Biblical DoctrineEdited by James H. CharlesworthContinuum International / 2008 / Trade Paperback$34.99 Retail:
$39.95Save 12% ($4.96)Availability: In StockCBD Stock No: WW027481
In a perplexing passage from the Gospel of John, Jesus is likened to the most reviled creature in Christian symbology: the snake. Attempting to understand how the Fourth Evangelist could have made such a surprising analogy, James H. Charlesworth has spent nearly a decade combing through the vast array of references to serpents in the ancient world—from the Bible and other religious texts to ancient statuary and jewelry. Charlesworth has arrived at a surprising conclusion: not only was the serpent a widespread symbol throughout the world, but its meanings were both subtle and varied. In fact, the serpent of ancient times was more often associated with positive attributes like healing and eternal life than it was with negative meanings.
This groundbreaking book explores in plentiful detail the symbol of the serpent from 40,000 BCE to the present, and from diverse regions in the world. In doing so it emphasizes the creativity of the biblical authors’ use of symbols and argues that we must today reexamine our own archetypal conceptions with comparable creativity.
James H. Charlesworth is George L. Collord Professor of New Testament Language and Literature, and director and editor of the Princeton Dead Sea Scrolls Project, Princeton Theological Seminary. He is the author or editor of more than sixty books and six hundred articles. He lives in Princeton, NJ.
“Magnificent . . . Exposing the rich complexity of historic, symbolic, and religious meanings associated with serpents, this fascinating and comprehensive study is highly recommended.”—Library Journal (starred review)
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