There are so many commonly accepted attacks on belief in Jesus today. Many of these attacks are so subtle I wasn’t even consciously aware of their undermining influence on me, until I began reading these books.
It follows on from the previous one relating the 3 years of Jesus’ public ministry. I highly recommend reading this other volume first if you are able.
This volume on Holy Week provides a glimpse into the world of Jerusalem in the first century, particularly in the week leading up to the crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus, followed by a chapter related to the Ascension of Jesus into Heaven.
This book answered, among other things, some questions regarding this last week in the life of Jesus.
What do all those words of Jesus mean that were spoken at the Last Supper?
Was it the same crowd who cheered Jesus on Palm Sunday that turned around and shouted, “Crucify him!” 5 days later?
How are we to make sense of the arguments that Jesus was not really raised bodily from the dead?
Who really still thinks that Jesus’ Resurrection was a pivotal point in the history of the world?
Perhaps another unintended by-product of reading these books has been a new appreciation for Pope Benedict XVI as a true shepherd who has an amazing faith in the power of Jesus, truly Risen. His staggering intellect does not prevent him from leading simpler souls like myself into a deeper understanding of the Jesus genuinely portrayed in the Bible.
Pope Emeritus Benedict has had to wade through the sludge of erroneous theologies which lead us further away from Christ. Thank God it was him and not me. I can now see why so many in positions of leadership in the Church have lost their faith or become increasingly confused. I do not think my faith would have survived the clever arguments of those who have so much to say about why faith is inconsequential and that what is written in the Bible is mere fallacy.
These books have been pivotal for me in terms of grounding my understanding of Jesus firmly in a reasoned and thoroughly faith-based reading of the Gospels. I highly recommend these books for anyone, whether they are Christian believers or non-believers.
If you have read this I would be interested to hear your reflections below.