Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Another review of Jenkins, the Crucible of Faith

BOOK REVIEW: Baylor history professor sees crucial era shaping Christmas story (Carl Hoover, Waco Tribune-Herald). Excerpt:
“There’s a real cultural and spiritual revolution in that period,” Jenkins said.

Power struggles over territory in the decades after Alexander’s death in 323 B.C. — primarily between the Seleucid and the Ptolemaic dynasties, with Rome coming to dominate both — and popular revolts against those ruling powers made ripe conditions for cultural and theological ferment, captured in the title of Jenkins’ newest history, “Crucible Of Faith: The Ancient Revolution That Made Our Modern Religious World.”

Jewish books and writings from that period, some preserved in the Apocrypha found between the Old and New Testaments in many Bibles, show the development of new ideas on angels and demons, Satan, heaven, hell, a messiah and a final apocalypse between good and evil, Jenkins said.

The Book of 1 Enoch, written in approximately the second century B.C., proved a pivotal work, particularly in its description of supernatural beings and existence.
For past PaleoJudaica posts on the book, see here and links.

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