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Jesus and First-Century Christianity in Jerusalem
Elizabeth McNamer and Bargil Pixner

9780809145232 Retail Price: $19.95
CenturyOne Price: $15.00
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Format: Paperback, 100pp.
ISBN: 9780809145232
Publisher: Paulist Press
Pub. Date: May 28, 2008

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From The Publisher:

This book, beautifully illustrated with maps and photos, traces the little-known story of the original Jewish Christian community and presents intriguing evidence connecting Jesus and his family with the Essenes.

Focusing on the first century (33-135 C.E.) in Jerusalem after the death of Jesus, its thesis is that the Jerusalem community remained true to their Jewish heritage and had a connection with the Essenes. The first bishop of Jerusalem was James, the brother of Jesus. He was the author of the letter of James. He was murdered in the year 62. An Essene priest, Thabuti expected to replace James but was not elected, and this led to the first schism in the church. James was followed by Simon, the cousin of Jesus, who was bishop until 104. At that time, descendants of the house of David were persecuted by the Romans. There were 13 bishops between then and 135. Christianity was a sect within Judaism. After the Bar Kohaba rebellion a gentile bishop was appointed. The Jewish church was inundated by gentiles and eventually integrated into the Byzantine church. The purpose of the book is to bring to light our Jewish connections, and, as the state of Israel is being threatened, an appreciation of our Jewish heritage.

Jesus and First-Century Christianity in Jerusalem is the only book available that attempts to reconcile Christianity with our Jewish heritage.


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Dr. Elizabeth McNamer teaches religious thought at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana . She is a co-author of the award winning video series Scripture from Scratch and has contributed numerous articles to the monthly publication of that title. For 14 years she has been a director of the Bethsaida Archaeological Excavations in Israel. She is a popular lecturer on Scripture and Christian history presenting talks in Asia, Europe, Israel and the US. Tthe late Father Bargil Pixner was a Benedictine Monk at Dormition Abbey Jerusalem. He authored numerous articles and books. As an archaeologist he uncovered parts of the Essene quarters on Mount Zion. He was an expert on the topography of Israel.

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