I remember this guy and the book from an appearance on the Daily Show last month.<quoted text>
I'm currently reading "Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth" by Reza Aslan (The guy who got slammed on Fox for being a Muslim writing about Jesus). To me, the most interesting part of the book is simply understanding the historical events of the time. However, the picture he attempts to draw of Jesus is, by necessity, much speculation based on information gleamed from the four gospels, which he goes into great detail on how unreliable they are. He paints a picture of Jesus as a roaming preacher / mystic (very common for the times) who is hell-bent on fighting against the perceived corruption of the Jewish nobility and high priests who were in bed with the Roman occupiers. Most of the book is not controversial and is very much in line with the current thinking of most biblical scholars and 1st century historians.
Jon Stewart gave him much fairer treatment than Fox did:
I like his one statement on the show. The book "would be the perfect Christmas
gift for your Jewish friends." Funny.(Stewart's birth name is Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz.)
The book sounds interesting. It sounds like Christianity started is a backlash against Judaism and the status quo.(And in turn Protestantism another backlash against Catholicism.)
It's all endlessly fascinating to me. Strong convictions about religion so incredibly widely held across the world. Fighting and killing words. So much power, the Pope etc. So much reverence, so much hate, so much love, distrust, suspicion, passion.....and so on.
And what is it all based on? Fascinating.