Zealot: The Life And Times Of Jesus Of Nazareth
- Author: Reza Aslan
- Publisher: Element
- ISBN: 9789352641444
Two thousand years ago, an itinerant Jewish preacher from Galilee launched a revolutionary movement proclaiming the "Kingdom of God", and threatened the established order of first-century Palestine. Defying both Imperial Rome and its collaborators in the Jewish religious hierarchy, he was captured, tortured and executed as a state criminal. Within decades, his followers would call him the Son of God. Sifting through centuries of mythmaking, Reza Aslan sheds new light on one of history's most influential and enigmatic figures by examining Jesus within the context of the times in which he lived: the age of zealotry, an era awash in apocalyptic fervor, when scores of Jewish prophets and would-be messiahs wandered the Holy Land bearing messages from God. They also espoused a fervent nationalism that made resistance to Roman occupation a sacred duty. Balancing the Jesus of the Gospels against historical sources, Aslan describes a complex gure: a man of peace who exhorted his followers to arm themselves; an exorcist and faith healer who urged his disciples to keep his identity secret; and the seditious 'King of the Jews', whose promise of liberation from Rome went unful lled in his lifetime. Aslan explores why the early Church preferred to promulgate an image of Jesus as a peaceful spiritual teacher rather than a politically conscious revolutionary, and grapples with the riddle of how Jesus understood himself. Zealot provides a fresh perspective on one of the greatest stories ever told.