Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Book Review: Living in the Time of Jesus of Nazareth

book cover

Living in the Time of Jesus of Nazareth
by Peter Connolly

Hardcover: 96 pages
Publisher: Steimatzky
Released: 1988

Source: Inherited from my grandfather's library.

Book Description from Back Cover (slightly modified):
This book covers the political background from the reign of Herod the Great through the end of the uprising against Rome at Masada. In sidebars, it also covers everyday life, the religion, the geography of Israel, the military, and the buildings.

My Review:
Living in the Time of Jesus of Nazareth is a Bible background book covering 103 BC to 73 AD. It gave detailed information about the political situation during those years. It also gave very brief overviews of: various political terms; the religious groups (Sadducees, Scribes, Pharisees, Essenes, the Sanhedrin, the Messiah); taxes and coinage; trials and punishments; daily living (weaving and spinning; childhood, education, and games; cooking, baking, and food; betrothal, marriage, and divorce; clothing and jewelry; death and burial; craftsmen and agricultural work); and the Roman military, weapons, and siege techniques.

The author used British terms. He seemed skeptical about the historical accuracy of the New Testament and treated Jesus as just one of the Messiahs of the time. (He spent only one page on Jesus of Nazareth.) However, the illustrations and historical background were nicely done.

The photos, illustrations, and maps were full-color. The photos were of the land and ruins of Biblical sites. The illustrations were of daily living tools and activities and artist reconstructions of various buildings that existed at that time (houses; palaces in Masada, Jericho, Jerusalem; baths; synagogues; the Temple; tombs; Herodium; Antonia Fortress; and various buildings at Masada, at Qumran, and at Caesarea).

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

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