Wednesday, March 3, 2010

DVD Review: Life and Ministry of the Messiah

DVD cover

That the World May Know:
Faith Lessons on the Life and Ministry of the Messiah

Length: 2 hours 35 minutes
Publisher: Zondervan
First Released: 2005

Source: Rented it from Netflix.

Back Cover Description:
Marvel at the magnificence of Herod's palace and how it shaped the culture of the day, and enjoy an amazing hike among the ruins of Qumran. You'll delight in the beautiful and mesmerizing simplicity of Jesus' parables as you study the events of Jesus' day that impacted His life, ministry and communication with his disciples and the public. This video is the third volume of the "That the World May Know" series.

The Life and Ministry of the Messiah is the third volume of the "That the World May Know" series. If you've never had a chance to travel in Israel and you can rent or borrow this series, then I'd highly recommend you do. It has nice footage of the Holy Land so that you can get a feel for what the land looks like now. It helps to bring the Bible alive.

If you've been to Israel and have read a lot of "cultural background to the Bible" books, then you probably know almost everything that's on this disk, though you might see a few places not on most Holy Land tours.

The lessons were filmed like you were a part of a tour group, but with added graphics, pictures, and aerial shots when appropriate. Only about half of the 8 lessons on this disk actually focused on Jesus or his teachings (see below). The format was that at each new site the teacher would give us the history related to the site, describe what the site originally looked like (if it was now in ruins), and give a brief faith lesson based on what we learned at that site. Sometimes the faith lessons were only lightly related to the site and a couple seemed a bit off to me (though nothing serious). Most of the faith lessons were very nice, though.

Lesson One: Herod's Palace - the history of Herod and a view of Bethlehem.

Lesson Two: Masada - why it was built and the history of the revolt in 66 AD.

Lesson Three: Qumran - the history of the Essenes.

Lesson Four: Mountain of Beatitudes and the city of Chorazin - cultural information about what houses looked like and about marriage ceremonies at the time of Jesus.

Lesson Five: a zealot city - information on Pharisees, Sadducees, Zealots, synagogues, and rabbis.

Lesson Six: the city of Sepphoris - what Jesus did for a trade before his ministry and explanations of various cultural references (to the theater, recent history, and tax collectors) that Jesus used in his teaching.

Lesson Seven: the crusader fort called Belvoir - a brief history of the crusades.

Lesson Eight: the wadi of En Gedi - how David came to this place and the significance of living water.

If you've watched this DVD, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the DVD in the comments.

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