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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Greater than Caesar: Christology and Empire in the Fourth Gospel
Thatcher, Tom

Minneapolis: Fortress, 2009 pp. xx + 172. $29.00


Description: Recent scholarship has shown that the peculiar history of a particular community of believers gave the Fourth Gospel its distinctive shape. Now Tom Thatcher argues that we must take account not just of tensions arising within the synagogue or between factions of believers in Christ but also attend to the Johannine portrayal of figures representing Roman rule in order to understand the Gospel's origin and message. Greater than Caesar examines the Fourth Gospel's characterizations of Jesus' opponents and its depictions of Jesus' authority and power in his confrontations with agents of imperial power, including Pilate and Jewish authorities. Thatcher argues that the Gospel is a thorough repudiation of the Roman Empire's claims on human allegiance. The one who speaks from the "dying machine" of the cross shows that he is in fact "greater than Caesar."

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Johannine Literature, John, Literature


Review by Benjamin Reynolds
Read the Review
Published 1/19/2010
Citation: Benjamin Reynolds, review of Tom Thatcher, Greater than Caesar: Christology and Empire in the Fourth Gospel, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2010).


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