Jesus, The Middle Eastern Storyteller  -     By: Gary M. Burge
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Jesus, The Middle Eastern Storyteller

Zondervan / 2009 / Paperback

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Product Description

People living in first-century Palestine flocked to hear Jesus teach. But how can we know what he actually meant when he told his famous parables? Burge digs deep into the customs, literature, and values of the ancient world to reveal the hidden meanings of Jesus' messages. Includes colorful maps, photographs, and illustrations. 112 pages, softcover from Zondervan.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 112
Vendor: Zondervan
Publication Date: 2009
Dimensions: 9.25 X 5.25 (inches)
ISBN: 0310280451
ISBN-13: 9780310280453

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Publisher's Description

Storytellers made history, and Jesus was the greatest of them all. But how can modern readers know what he actually meant in such iconic parables as the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan? Jesus, the Middle Eastern Storyteller combines the readability of a popular novel and the authority of scholarship to uncover the hidden meaning of references too often misinterpreted or left shrouded in mystery. The first volume in the Ancient Context, Ancient Faith series drives to the heart of readers’ desire to know the culture behind the Scriptures. Colorful maps, photos, and illustrations enhance the context of the times that shaped Jesus’ vivid communication of core truths. This expert guide is an invaluable resource for study groups, teachers, leaders, and inquiring Christians who want to dig deeper and enrich their spiritual life.

Author Bio

Gary M. Burge (PhD, King's College, Aberdeen University) is a professor of New Testament in the Department of Biblical and Theological Studies at Wheaton College and Graduate School, Wheaton, Illinois. Gary has authored a number of books, including Who Are God’s People in the Middle East? What Christians Are Not Being Told About Israel and the Palestinians; John and Letters of John in the NIV Application Commentary series; The New Testament in Antiquity (coauthored with Lynn Cohick and Gene Green); and the first three volumes in the Ancient Context, Ancient Faith series, The Bible and the Land and Jesus, the Middle Eastern Storyteller, and Encounters with Jesus. Gary specializes in the Middle East, its churches, and its history in the Hellenistic period.

Product Reviews

4.4 Stars Out Of 5
4.4 out of 5
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Displaying items 1-5 of 5
Page 1 of 1
  1. Sanborn, IA
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Helpful insights
    September 20, 2013
    Sanborn, IA
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: female
    This book is easy to read but so very helpful to understand the culture in which Jesus lived and taught. Excellent.
  2. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    August 3, 2010
    Joel Weber
    If you've read books by Kenneth Bailey you will find this very familiar and, worthwhile. Although not as in-depth as Bailey (likely by choice) Burge has offered great insights into the world of the NT, from which we particularly in the the West are far removed. Burge elaborates culture, geography, achitecture, climate and some language to help us make sense of how Jesus spoke to his audience of 2000 years ago. By better understanding the context and social customs present in Jesus' day, we can get a much clearer and fuller understanding of what Jesus meant. This book is a little "lighter" reading than those by Kenneth Bailey on the same topics but it is replete with many high quality pictures and high gloss pages. A worthwhile addition to your cultural library.
  3. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    July 20, 2010
    Ronald Nardell
    Amazing book! It explains some parables with the era and context in which they were originally presented. Eye opening and thought provoking. Highly recommended. Thank you.
  4. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    September 25, 2009
    Roy Underwood
    This is an insightful commentary on the parables, offering a perspective that is not found elsewhere. The use of the mores and beliefs of first century Israel is particularly helful.
  5. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    September 6, 2009
    Debbie from ChristFocus Book Club
    "Jesus, the Middle Eastern Storyteller" is a useful Bible reference book. It gave some basic information on Middle Eastern storytelling techniques of Jesus' time period, then discussed cultural background information and the meaning of several parables: a friend that comes at midnight, a father's gifts, the great banquet, the good Samaritan, the servant forgiven of a huge debt, the lost sheep, the lost coin, the prodigal son, and the foolish rich farmer.The information was interesting and filled out what was happening in the parables, but most of it was not new to me and only once did it change my understanding of the meaning of the parable. I was a bit confused by how the author often stated that Westerners assume or teach certain things about a certain parable, yet I've never assumed that or heard such taught about it.The author also gave mini-sermons on how to apply the lessons of the parables to our own lives. The book contained lovely color photographs that illustrated what the text was referring to.Several times, the author briefly referred to details of an Old Testament story but gave the wrong information. (For example, he states Jacob sold his heritage for a pot of stew, yet it's Esau who sells his birthright. And he has Cain claiming to take a sevenfold revenge when it's God who makes that promise.) Fair or not, this made me wonder how carefully the author checked the accuracy of the other things he stated.Overall, the book was a quick read and easy to understand, and it's a good book on the parables of Jesus for those who can't get enough of this type of information or who wouldn't bother with a longer book.
Displaying items 1-5 of 5
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