Working with selected miracles of Jesus from the canonical Gospel traditions and with background studies in the general understanding of miracles in the Greco-Roman world of the Hellenistic period, this collection of essays shows how we may understand the theological reasons why the early followers of Jesus included these stories in their traditions that constituted the canonical Gospels. Using individual stories from the Gospels, three of the essays demonstrate how literary-critical analysis can show the theological intent of the miracle story. A second set of three essays examines the way Mark and Luke view the miracle tradition within their larger task of writing the story of Jesus. A final set of three articles examines the Hellenistic background of such stories, and the way they were used in secular and Jewish sources, to gain perspective on what the early Christians intended with the miracle stories of Jesus.
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