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God's Final Envoy: Early Christology and Jesus' Own View of His Mission
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God's Final Envoy: Early Christology and Jesus' Own View of His Mission


Eerdmans 1998

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Many have claimed to be able to present a startling new picture of Jesus. Yet, in spite of loud claims to the contrary, practically all we can know about him comes from the first three New Testament Gospels or can be inferred from statements in Paul’s letters. In this intriguing study, Marinus de Jonge canvasses these earliest Christian responses to Jesus in an attempt to discover Jesus’ own understanding of himself and his mission. Steering a middle course between skepticism and absolute confidence regarding the reliability and the usefulness of what we know about Jesus from the early Christian sources, de Jonge carefully distinguishes between what seems certain, probable, and possible, and he argues that though we cannot fill in all the details, it is possible to present a picture of what was most characteristic of Jesus.

Key Features

  • Clear and interesting writings from contemporary biblical scholars
  • Perfect for students, laity, pastors, and professors

Praise for the Print Edition

'This book does not present a startling new picture of Jesus,' states the author in the preface. He considers only the evidence of the synoptics and Paul, and the conclusions that he draws—Jesus considered himself the prophet of the last days, called himself Son of Man, may have been considered Messiah, thought the Kingdom of God to be both present and future—are hardly radical. Further, de Jonge is cautious about claims for historicity and diligently notes how his hypotheses are not the only ways to read the evidence. The book is valuable, both for its unusual analyses of familiar material and for its carefully limited conclusions from the arguments.

—Richard B. Vinson, The Review of Biblical Literature

Product Details

  • Title: God's Final Envoy: Early Christology and Jesus' Own View of His Mission
  • Author: Marinus de Jonge
  • Publisher: W. B. Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 1998
  • Pages: 176

About Marinus de Jonge

Marinus de Jonge was Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Early Christian Literature at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.