Month: December 2015

Jesus and the Temple

In the Challenge of Jesus, N T Wright raises the questions of what did Jesus think of the current temple, and what did he want to replace it with? It is clear that Jesus prophesied the fall of the Temple and saw this as being part of God’s judgement. This is seen most clearly in his temple action (Mark 11:15-17). 15 Then they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling and those who were buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves; 16 and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple.17 He was teaching and saying, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’?     But you have made it a den of robbers.” In the past God moved prophets to give small ‘demonstrations’ of what was in store for Israel. Below are examples from Ezekiel, Hosea and Jeremiah. Action (Ezekiel 4) And you, O mortal, take a brick and set it before you. On it portray a city, Jerusalem; 2 and put siegeworks against it, and build a siege wall against it, and cast up a ramp against it; set camps also against it, and plant battering rams against it all around. Explanation (Ezekiel 4) This is a sign...

Read More

Summary of The Challenge of Jesus by N T Wright

The Challenge of Jesus: a Summary Below is a reasonably thorough summary of N T Wright’s wonderful book: The Challenge of Jesus. I hope you find it helpful. Chapter 1 – The Challenge of Studying Jesus There have been three main views on the historical Jesus. We can know very little. Only focus on what we can be very certain of. So no picture of a human being in his context, just a miscellaneous collection of certain sayings. Often starting with an outright disbelief in the supernatural, thus no resurrection and miracles from the start.  Other extreme. The quest is a waste of time. What counts is knowing the living Jesus now. This approach is almost a bit scared of looking. Try to respectfully look. Using a good historical method to generate a picture that fits what we are told and fits into the correct historical context. Reasons for doing so. KNOWING GOD – God cannot be seen. Though we can gain some information about him from looking at creation and his dealings with Israel, the place where we see him most clearly is in Jesus. We are told that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. So by studying Jesus as he was when he walked the earth, we are learning about what he is about now, and so what God is like. LOYALTY TO SCRIPTURE – Our approach should be ‘We...

Read More