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Jesus in the Talmud

3.7  ·  Rating Details ·  46 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
Scattered throughout the Talmud, the founding document of rabbinic Judaism in late antiquity, can be found quite a few references to Jesus--and they're not flattering. In this lucid, richly detailed, and accessible book, Peter Schafer examines how the rabbis of the Talmud read, understood, and used the New Testament Jesus narrative to assert, ultimately, Judaism's superior ...more
Hardcover, 210 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Princeton University Press (first published January 15th 2007)
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J. Wallace
Oct 12, 2012 J. Wallace rated it really liked it
Good book that discusses the ancient Jewish references to Jesus that are scattered throughout the Talmud. I also discuss this topic in my book, “Cold Case Christianity” (Chapter 12: Were They Corroborated?)

Cold-Case Christianity: A Homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels
Jul 30, 2014 DissidentCat rated it it was amazing
This is a precious book on the subject. It shows how the rabbis were well aware of the content of the gospels. They wrote polemical counter-narratives of the story of Jesus using circumlocutions and mocking the claims of the christians. The sexual theme is often used. Jesus is called a bastard child, a wicked disciple, an enticer to idolatry and a lustful man(with even hints of an homosexual relation with his most "beloved disciple"). His mother Mary is equated to the demon Lilith. Also the rabb ...more
Mohammed Hussam
البحث عن شخصية دينية كبيرة -بمستوى يسوع- في نصوص معادية -كالأدبيات الحاخامية- لا يخلو من اشكال، خصوصاً لو عرفنا أن هذهِ النصوص كُتبت في عصر كانت العواطف فيهِ هي سيدة الموقف، حيث الإساءة للآخر تكاد تكون العنوان الأبرز لأغلب المعارك الفكرية. هذا من جهة، من جهة أخرى فمعلوم أن بناء صورة أكثر دقة عن حدث تاريخي يحتاج تسليط الضوء على المصادر الخارجية بنفس القدر الذي نحتاجه لدراسة المصادر الداخلية، وفي حالة يسوع والمسيحية المبكرة لا نملك إلا الفكر الحاخامي التلمودي مصدراً للبحث، على أن لا ننسى أنه فكر م ...more
Dec 04, 2011 Steefen rated it liked it
Shelves: history
The author does not set up his subject to my liking.

What was the state of Babylonian rabbis to Jerusalem rabbis during the 1st century?

Did the religious establishment of Babylon travel back and forth to Jerusalem?
Did the religious establishment of Jerusalem travel back and forth to Babylon?
Did Jesus or any of his disciples travel to Babylon?

Were there Babylonian rabbis who were eyewitnesses to Jesus? Who were they?
We know rabbis of Jerusalem experienced Jesus first hand.

Does the Babylonian Talmu
Jul 19, 2012 Lucas rated it it was ok
Shelves: owned
This is a dumb book. I gave it two stars because it does what it claims to do: present a picture of how Jewish scholars and teachers thought of Jesus without claiming that what they said about Jesus was impartial or incontrovertible fact. Surprise, surprise: they thought Jesus was an illegitimate son and a student gone bad. He dabbled in Egyptian sorcery, etc, etc.

So why so few stars when it does what it claims to do? Two stars because it is a book that works hard to really say nothing at all. I
Apr 25, 2016 Wilson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fascinating work. 4 stars for the Talmudic index alone but a must read for anyone interested in Jewish Christian relations.
Jeffrey Backlin
Mar 15, 2014 Jeffrey Backlin rated it liked it
Shelves: history
A review of the historical Jesus through Jewish writings (i.e. Babylonian and Palestinian Talmud's).
Aug 13, 2014 gfguildjr rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What the Rabbi's really thought of Jesus. An eye opener.
Jan 19, 2014 Said rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This topic is extremely interesting and brings up the discussion of Jesus in the Talmud in a scholarly way. Although a little dry in the beginning, it does become more interesting, and it is obvious that the author has an immense knowledge of Jewish scripture and an amazing ability to decipher and analyze references to Jesus. This is obviously a highly sensitive subject between Jews and Christians, and the author analyzes it in the most respectful way possible.
Maggie Anton
Jan 29, 2016 Maggie Anton rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jewish, judaism
I found this book fascinating and highly informative. The author combed through many original manuscripts of Talmud to find what the medieval censors had deleted. The results are amazing, and prove that the Talmudic rabbis knew very well what the Christians wrote about Jesus and had their own polemic narratives about him in return. Also a good overview of history of early Christianity vs rabbinic Judaism.
Sam Schulman
Nov 07, 2009 Sam Schulman rated it it was ok
That there isn't much of interest about Jesus in the Talmud. A well-executed disappointment. Infinitely put-downable - and yet every time I saw the title I thought, oh, I still have that left to read!
Don't put yourself through this torture.
Apr 18, 2016 Lucy rated it really liked it
Anyone interested in early Christianity/Judaism or comparative religion needs to read this book. Schafer does an excellent job defusing an extremely loaded topic and providing historical and religious context.
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