The First Christmas Paperback
What the Gospels really teach us about Jesus' birth
by Marcus J. Borg;
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The First Christmas
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Borg and Crossan help us to see this familiar narrative afresh by answering the question What do these stories mean? from the perspective of both the first and the twenty-first centuries. They successfully show that the Christmas story, read in its original context, is far richer and more challenging than people imagine.
This book is in the same vein and by the same authors as the successful The Last Week - What the Gospels Teach About Jesuss Final Days in Jerusalem.
The First Christmas by Marcus J. Borg was published by SPCK in August 2008 and is our 18171st best seller. The ISBN for The First Christmas is 9780281060047.
Reviews of The First Christmas
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The First Christmas: What the Gospels Really Teach Us About Jesus's BirthHelen Hancox, via The Good Book Stall
The birth narratives in Matthew and Luke are so familiar, heard every Christmas in church and on the radio, that I wasn't sure there was much more I could learn about them. How wrong I was! Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan's book started brilliantly; within the first chapter I was hooked on what they unfolded. They approach the birth narratives as parables/metaphors, not particularly addressing modern-day ideas of historicity but instead looking at the narratives and their structure in terms of what the gospel writers might have wanted to say. It becomes clear that Matthew and Luke are very different, with Matthew presenting Jesus as the New Moses, reflecting many images and ideas from Jewish writings, and Luke's emphasis on the stories as an overture to his larger themes of women, the marginalised and the Holy Spirit.
The book goes step-by-step through some parts of the nativity stories, explaining the historical context for many of the events, showing the parallels and the differences between the gospels, relating parts to historical or metaphorical events. I found the book began slightly to drag by the end but I was really taken by much of what they said, particularly the links Matthew makes between Jesus, Moses and Caesar. Some more conservative Christians will probably find the liberal tone of the book too much to stomach which is a shame as there are some real gems in here, but for those with an open mind and an interest in understanding more about the world of the time of Jesus this is an unmissable book.
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Details for The First Christmas
|Page last updated||25th December 2016|
|Author / Artist||Marcus J. Borg|
|Publisher||SPCK (August 2008)|
|Number of Pages||240|