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Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus: How a Jewish Perspective Can Transform Your Understanding

, 2018
ISBN: 9781493417445



What if you could sit down beside Jesus as he explained the Bible to you? What life-changing insights might emerge?

Vast treasures await us when we read the Scriptures as a native, through the eyes of one of Jesus’s first-century Jewish disciples. Combining careful research with engaging prose, Lois Tverberg acts as a master guide, transporting us across the cultural divide between our world and that of the Bible.

As we begin to understand “how the Bible thinks,” our own thinking will be transformed as well, and we will be able to approach God and the stories and teaching of Scripture with fresh insight. By opening our eyes to the way Middle Eastern people would have understood Jesus, Lois Tverberg takes us on a journey that will deepen our love of this very Jewish book, enriching our lives in the process.

In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Resource Experts

Key Features

  • Helps readers understand the Middle Eastern Jewish context of Scripture
  • Provides helpful reflection points and questions for going deeper after each chapter
  • Invites readers to examine their own cultural preconceptions


  • Opening the Bible with Jesus

Repacking Our Mental Bags: Tools for the Journey

  • Learning to Be There
  • What Does “Christ” Mean, Anyway?
  • Painting in Hebrew

How the Bible Thinks: Big Picture Ideas That You Need to Understand

  • Greek Brain, Hebrew Brain
  • Why Jesus Needs Those Boring “Begats”
  • Reading the Bible as a “We”
  • Like Grasshoppers in Our Own Eyes

Reading about the Messiah: Seeing Him through Hebrew Eyes

  • Memory Is Critical
  • Moses and the Prophets Have Spoken
  • Reading in the Third Dimension
  • Jesus’ Bold Messianic Claims
  • When the Words Catch Fire

Top Highlights

“The act of anointing with sacred oil emphasized that it was God himself who had ordained a person and given him authority to lead his people and act as his representative.” (Page 44)

“So the most prominent idea within the title ‘Christ’ is actually that of a king. In simple terms, we could say that ‘Jesus Christ’ means, ‘Jesus, God’s chosen King.’” (Page 44)

“We derive our basic identity from our work outside of the home, not from the growth and strength of our family.” (Page 37)

“Could it be that the ‘D’ in WEIRD, which stands for ‘democratic,’ is coloring our understanding? We live in an egalitarian society that emphasizes personal autonomy, freedom, and individual rights. We expect to have a vote in every decision that affects us. So we bristle at submitting to any kind of authority, to the point where central biblical metaphors like God establishing his ‘kingdom’ on earth and the Messiah as God’s anointed ‘King’ simply do not resonate. To the contrary, this imagery may actually offend us.” (Page 53)

“We define ourselves in terms of our rights and freedoms. By contrast, much of the world doesn’t see personal autonomy as an important value. Rather, they view people principally as members of groups—families, tribes, and nations—that make strong claims on the people’s loyalty. What defines you are your relationships, and what orders your life are your responsibilities to others, not your personal freedom to do what you like.” (Page 38)

Praise for the Print Edition

In her delightful style, Lois Tverberg engagingly leads us across cultures to begin to envision a different worldview, a worldview more consistent with the world of most of Scripture. In so doing, she brings alive biblical texts from the inside.

Craig S. Keener, F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies, Asbury Theological Seminary

Thanks to the good work of biblical scholars, the historical Jesus of Nazareth is once again situated in his divinely designed Second Temple period Jewish context. The next critical step is to understand that hearing him in his original setting equips us to follow him more faithfully in ours. The latest from Lois Tverberg is a meaningful contribution to that end. Read this book for a more informed reading of The Book.

—James C. Whitman, president, Center for Judaic-Christian Studies

In Reading the Bible With Rabbi Jesus, Lois Tverberg opens up the Scriptures we all love and shines a fascinating new light on them. As she gracefully bridges the culture gap between Jesus' first Jewish followers and twenty-first century Christians and unites the Old and New Testaments, I found myself falling in love with the Bible all over again. Lois is a superb teacher, using story and gentle humor to great effect. I devoured this fascinating book. Highly recommended!

—Lynn Austin, author of Where We Belong

Product Details

  • Title: Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus: How a Jewish Perspective Can Transform Your Understanding
  • Author: Lois Tverberg
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Pages: 288
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Topic: Biblical Interpretation

Lois Tverberg has been speaking and writing about the Jewish background of Christianity for the past 20 years. Her passion is to translate the Bible’s ancient setting into fresh insights that deepen and strengthen Christian faith. She is cofounder of the En-Gedi Resource Center, an educational ministry with a goal of deepening Christian understanding of the Bible in its original context. A former professor, Tverberg currently lives in Holland, Michigan, and speaks at churches, conferences, and retreats. Learn more at ourrabbijesus.com.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition


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