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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony
Bauckham, Richard

Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006 pp. xiii + 538. $32.00


Description: This momentous book argues that the four Gospels are closely based on the eyewitness testimony of those who personally knew Jesus. Noted New Testament scholar Richard Bauckham challenges the prevailing assumption that the accounts of Jesus circulated as “anonymous community traditions,” asserting instead that they were transmitted in the names of the original eyewitnesses. To drive home this controversial point, Bauckham draws on internal literary evidence, the use of personal names in first-century Jewish Palestine, and recent developments in the understanding of oral tradition. Jesus and the Eyewitnesses also taps into the rich resources of modern study of memory, especially in cognitive psychology, refuting the conclusions of the form critics and calling New Testament scholarship to make a clean break with this long-dominant tradition. Finally, Bauckham challenges readers to end the classic division between the “historical Jesus” and the “Christ of faith,” proposing instead the “Jesus of testimony” as presented by the Gospels.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, Johannine Literature, John, Literature, Methods, Historical Approaches, History, Early Church Origins, Literary Approaches, Social-Scientific Approaches

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Review by Stephen J. Patterson
Published 6/26/2009
Citation: Stephen J. Patterson, review of Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2009).


Review by Christopher Tuckett
Published 12/15/2007
Citation: Christopher Tuckett, review of Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2007).


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