James W. White Lectures 2014 – John Dominic Crossan

(4b) 2012John Dominic Crossan was the 2014 James W. White Lectures Symposium speaker

If you missed any of the lectures, or you would like to listen to them again, you can find them right here!
Just click onto the following links (Friday, May 2 to come shortly!):

FRIDAY, MAY 2 – 7:30 pm Lecture at Armstrong Hall, Colorado College: Biblical Challenge: Adam and Eve or Cain and Abel? (Audio/MP3)
FRIDAY, MAY 2 – Questions and Answers (Audio/MP3)

SATURDAY, MAY 3 – 9:30 am Lecture: Biblical Covenant: Human Destiny or Divine Sanction? (Audio/MP3)
SATURDAY, MAY 3 – Questions and Answers on Lecture 1. (Audio/MP3)
SATURDAY, MAY 3 – 1:00 pm Lecture: Biblical Criterion: Historical Jesus or Apocalyptic Christ? (Audio/MP3)
SATURDAY, MAY 3 – Questions and Answers on Lecture 2.  (Audio/MP3)

SUNDAY, MAY 4 – 9:45 am Dialogue between Rev. Dr. Benjamin Broadbent and Dr. John Dominic Crossan (Audio/MP3)

John Dominic Crossan, is an Irish-American New Testament scholar, historian of early Christianity, and former Catholic priest who has produced both scholarly and popular works. His research has focused on the historical Jesus, on the anthropology of the Ancient Mediterranean and New Testament worlds and on the application of postmodern hermetical approaches to the Bible.

Greatest-Prayer-coverThe Greatest Prayer:  Rediscovering The Revolutionary Message Of The Lord’s Prayer (2010) is John Dominic Crossan’s analysis line-by-line of Christianity’s official prayer, sometimes called the Abba prayer.  Using seven key words — Father, name, kingdom, will, bread, debt, and temptation, Crossan spans 2000 years exploring what these words meant then and now.  He compares three versions: Matthew, Luke and the Didache (also called the Doctrine of the Twelve Apostles and possibly the oldest surviving Christian document outside of the New Testament canon).  He explains differences among the three sources.  In fact, the prayer’s closing lines “Thine is the Kingdom and The Power…and Ever” come not from the Gospels but from the Didache document.  Crossan’s interpretation is clear; the Lord’s prayer is a collaboration between God and us, his people.  We must participate to see the Kingdom of God realized.  He calls this participation “The Great Divine Cleanup of the World”.


Product6750_Photo1The Power of Parable; How Fiction By Jesus Became Fiction About Jesus (2012) is written in two parts.  The first half explores riddle, example and challenge parables – some told by Jesus and some from the Old Testament.  One of the pleasures in this book is finding the riddle in Mark’s “The Sower” and rereading the examples for moral behavior in Luke’s “Lost Sheep” and the Book of Ruth.  The Prodigal Son is, of course, one of the challenge parables.

The book’s second half is a challenge in itself.  Crossan suggests that many of the important stories told about Jesus by the Gospel writers were fiction, written with an agenda.  One example is Mark’s account of Jesus and Pilate. Most scholars agree that such a face-to-face encounter never happened. Crossan speculates that fear of Rome within the Jewish community prompted Mark to place the blame for Jesus’ death on the chief priests rather than the Roman government.

9780061800351Jesus: a Revolutionary Biography (1994) is a more readable edited version of his very scholarly The Historical Jesus: the life of a Mediterranean Jewish peasant (1991).  Thank you, Dr. Crossan!  The first can be a daunting read.  The second book, still startling in what the author considers myth and truth in Jesus’ life, is intriguing. He describes Jesus’ times and culture, attitudes about family, food, and class and particularly the volatile Jewish hatred of the Romans.  Even apart from the many traditional stories, Jesus’ life and impact on the world becomes more astounding than ever. Crossan is a passionate Christian and his portrayal of Jesus as a radical, preaching for social justice and the possibilities of a Kingdom of Heaven here and now, is classic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *