(++) The Historical Jesus: The Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant (1991 Crossan), book

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The Historical Jesus: The Life of a Mediterranean Jewish Peasant (1991) is a book by John Dominic Crossan.


"Offers a historical look at the life of Jesus Christ, portraying him as a courageous Jewish Mediterranean peasant and a radical social revolutionary"--Publisher description.

"The first part of the trilogy which Crossan himself calls the "scholarly core" of his work and includes The Birth of Christianity (1998 Crossan), book and In Search of Paul (2004 Crossan/Reed), book, here Crossan attempts to consistently apply a strict methodology, which consists of locating Jesus both historically within first-century, Roman ruled, Galilee, anthropologically within colonized peasant communities in turmoil over their imperial masters, and textually within the earliest, most well attested literary sources, no matter their canonical status. The result of his work is a Jesus at odds with John the Baptist's apocalyptic message. This is Jesus the sapiential peasant, the Jewish Cynic, who both proclaimed a present, ethical Kingdom of God where no boundaries exist either between humanity and itself or between humanity and their God, and who acted out his egalitarian message through bringing free healing to the people (i.e. contact with the divine) and through the shared meal. Far from thinking of himself as the sole mediator or broker of God, Jesus preached a Kingdom without the need for any such mediator, temple, messiah, or otherwise.--Jason M. Zurawski, University of Michigan.

Editions and translations

Published in San Francisco, CA [America]: HarperSanFrancisco, 1991.



  • Overture: The Gospel of Jesus
  • Prologue: The Historical Jesus
  • Part I: Brokered Empire
    • 1. Then and Now
    • 2. War and Peace
    • 3. Slave and Patron
    • 4. Poverty and Freedom
  • Part II: Embattled Brokerage
    • 5. Aristocrat and Historian
    • 6. Visionary and Teacher
    • 7. Peasant and Protester
    • 8. Magician and Prophet
    • 9. Bandit and Messiah
    • 10. Rebel and Revolutionary
  • Part III: Brokerless Kingdom
    • 11. John and Jesus
    • 12. Kingdom and Wisdom
    • 13. Magic and Meal
    • 14. Death and Burial
    • 15. Resurrection and Authority
  • Epilogue

External links