Jesus of Nazareth - Holy Week

The second part of the Pope's bestselling book on Jesus Christ as portrayed in Scripture: insightful and authoritative.

By: Benedict XVI, Pope

Format: Hardback

Dimensions: 13.3cm by 20.3cm

ISBN : 9781860827075

Number of Pages: 384

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This item can only be delivered within the UK, Ireland, and Europe.

Publication Date: 10 Mar 2011

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Product Code: DO840


WHO IS JESUS? Many modern scholars have tried to reinterpret him as a myth, a political revolutionary, a prophet whose teaching was distorted by his followers. In short, anything other than the traditional Christian understanding of him as the Messiah, the Son of God.

But Jesus of Nazareth truly is the Son of God, insists Benedict XVI. His theological studies, over many decades, have led this eminent scholar to conclude that proper historical scholarship certainly cannot disprove the Christian claim of Christ's divinity. Indeed, Benedict maintains that the evidence, fairly considered, brings us face-to-face with the challenge of Jesus - a real man who taught and acted with claims of divine authority, claims not so easily dismissed.

Benedict XVI presents this challenge in his new book, Jesus of Nazareth - Holy Week, the sequel to his widely acclaimed first volume which attracted praise from Catholic and non-Catholic Christians alike.

Why was Jesus rejected by the religious leaders of his day?

- Who was responsible for his death?

- Did he establish a Church to carry on his work?

 - How did Jesus view his suffering and death? 

- How should we? - And, most importantly, did Jesus really rise from the dead and what does his resurrection mean?


Benedict brings to his study the vast learning of a brilliant scholar, the passionate searching of a great mind, and the deep compassion of a pastor's heart. In the end, he dares readers to grapple with the meaning of Jesus' life, teaching, death, and resurrection.

REVIEWS "In this masterful interweaving of history and theology, Pope Benedict takes us to the heart of the Holy Week story. He reveals how the truth about Jesus is best grasped, not by minimalist scholarly reconstructions, but by profound meditation upon the Christ of the Gospels. A whole Lenten retreat in one volume."

Ian Boxall, St Stephen's House, Oxford

"This second volume of Pope Benedict's 'search for the face of the Lord' draws us ever deeper into the mysteries of Jesus's mission and life. At its heart glows a powerful meditation on the prayer of Jesus that draws into the mission of Christ the Saviour, and yet also toward the Saviour who lives among us still."

Lewis Ayres, Bede Professor of Catholic Theology at Durham University

"Benedict XVI writes with the deft touch of a mature scholar and an experienced teacher. He explains his often brilliant insights with simple clarity and the masterly phrase which enlightens and convinces. His purpose is to give a reading which leads to a personal encounter with Christ. It is not just a historical study, but builds on the historico-critical method to arrive at a 'faith-hermeneutic'. It does, of course, discuss historical problems, but the Pope's primary aim is 'listening with Jesus' disciples across the ages'. It is a reading of the gospel not by a historian but by a historically alert theologian, writing from within the Church."

Dom Henry Wansbrough, O.S.B., Ampleforth Abbey, Chairman of the Trustees of the Catholic Biblical Association

"This book takes the tools of historians and literary critics and puts them at the service of the Fathers and doctors of the Church. More widely, it puts those tools at the service of the faith of the Church - which is how Benedict is able to generate insights of his own that are, at times, almost heart-stoppingly moving."

Aidan Nichols, O.P.

"This theological masterpiece courageously confronts head-on two centuries of historical exegesis and establishes a fresh way of reading the Gospels as both biography and theology in a coherent way. The author explains, 'I set out to discover the real Jesus, on the basis of whom something like a Christology from below would then become possible. The quest for the historical Jesus, as conducted in mainstream critical exegesis in accordance with its hermeneutical presuppositions, lacks sufficient content to exert any significant historical impact. It is focused too much on the past for it to make possible a personal relationship with Jesus.' "Here we find a compelling model for the presentation of the life of holy rabbi, Hillel or Aqiba, in the same context as we account for the life of Jesus."

Jacob Neusner, Distinguished Service Professor of the History and Theology of Judaism; Senior Fellow, Institute of Advanced Theology, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y.

"On the Day of Pentecost, Peter sought to explain to the assembled multitude what God had done through Jesus of Nazareth, crucified and risen. Peter's successor, Benedict XVI, here undertakes the same urgent task, in fruitful dialogue with the historical-critical biblical scholarship that dominates contemporary academic study of Jesus. Charting the path of the new evangelization, Pope Benedict XVI uncovers for us the living source of Peter's evangelizing mission: Jesus, in whom God gives hope to the world."

Matthew Levering, Ph.D., Co-Editor, Nova et Vetera, and Co-Director, Center for Catholic-Evangelical Dialogue

"The 'Jesus of Nazareth' project will be Pope Benedict's great legacy, just as the 'Theology of the Body' has become the Venerable Pope John Paul's. In this second volume he accomplishes many remarkable things, among them a positive and substantive contribution to the centuries-long Christian dialogue about expiation and atonement. This will be of great value to those who want to understand -- and share with others -- how our salvation is accomplished by Jesus' passion, death and resurrection. In particular, Benedict shows how the institution of the Eucharist on Holy Thursday is what transformed Jesus' death on Good Friday from being a Roman execution into the supreme sacrifice of God's redemptive love. Benedict's writing is a feast for the soul that deserves to be read and savored.'

Scott Hahn, Ph.D., Founder and Director of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology

"Working from Scripture, the Church Fathers and contemporary scholarship, Benedict XVI deftly brings together the historical and theological dimensions of the gospel portraits of Jesus. This is a splendid, penetrating study of the central figure of Christian faith; a learned and spiritual illumination not only of who Jesus was, but who he is for us today."

+Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., Archbishop of Denver

"What better guide could you find than Benedict XVI to lead you on the bracing adventure of exploring the historical Jesus and discovering, under the tutelage this most sage successor to Peter, the inner meaning of Jesus' death and resurrection. Faith and reason are the two wings Benedict XVI takes up to lead us to astonishingly fresh spiritual perspectives and dizzying heights. This book often takes one's breath away, while infusing in the reader the God-breathed Word, which is the Gospel."

Tim Gray, Ph.D., President , Augustine Institute, Denver, Colorado

"In his new book, Joseph Ratzinger - the professor who is now Pope - leads us to the Heart of Jesus, 'the Pierced One', in His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. Here is the spiritual reading we need if we are to participate intelligently and prayerfully in the sacred liturgy of the Easter Triduum."

Fr. John Saward, Oxford University

"As in his first volume of Jesus of Nazareth, so, once again, in his second volume, Pope Benedict XVI has authored a marvelous book, this time on the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus. What makes this study so attractive is the depth of its biblical insight, its attention to historical issues, its keen theological acumen, and its lucid and precise expression. Moreover, as with the first volume, it is written in a serene and prayerful manner - a serenity and a prayerfulness that is conveyed to the heart and mind of the reader. This book fulfills Pope Benedict's ardent desire - that it would 'be helpful to all readers who seek to encounter Jesus and to believe in him.' "

Thomas G. Weinandy, O.F.M., Cap., Executive Director for the Secretariat for Doctrine, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

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Bound to be controversial with non-Christians, but Pope Benedict's great gift as a top theologian is that he can make his theology plain to the layman. Worth reading.

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Benedict's monumental work on Jesus' Passion has helped me prepare adequately for Lent. Using his usual crystal-clear style, the Pope Emeritus delves deeply into the theological meaning of the various events between and including Palm Sunday and the Resurrection. After reading it, one becomes aware of the many hidden meanings of Jesus' life that are not apparent when simply reading the Gospel. I reccomend this book to anyone who wants to find out more about the incredibly deep meaning of Jesus' journey to the Cross.

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This is the second of the Pope's trilogy on the life of Jesus. I loved the first and this one is even better. I learnt so much from it - it is scholarly, devotional, biblical and Christ-centred. The section on Jesus saying 'this is my body' was particularly helpful to me. I am not a Roman Catholic and do not accept traditional catholic teaching on the mass - but what is said in this book makes a lot of sense and was personally very helpful to me. There is also one section where he teaches justification by faith (which was a bit of a surprise!). I highlighted so much of this book - that it looks like a rainbow! Highly highly recommended. Can't wait to get the third one.... "The New Testament message is not simply an idea; essential to it is the fact that these events occurred in the history of this world; biblical faith does not recount stories as symbols of meta-historical truths; rather, it bases itself upon history that unfolded upon this earth."

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This is beautiful meditation on the events which occupied a few weeks in real time but to which each of the Gospels devote about half of their material.The Pope can be quite radical in his acceptance of questions raised by scholarship - for example over the dating of the Entrance into Jerusalem or the Last Supper - but his approach is that of a believer entering more deeply into the events rather than some neutral observer. A book to be read and re-read

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Pope Benedict XVI in this volume covers the period from the entry of Christ into Jerusalem to the Resurrection. It is a truly masterful presentation. The aspect which was seminal for me came in the section dealing with the washing of the disciples' feet on Maundy Thursday. Pope Benedict explains that often Christianity is seen as a higher moral standard than the old dispensation. eg Thou shalt not kill becomes do not get angry. But the Pope says the idea that Christianity ammounts to greater moral gymnastics is a misconception. The Christian way is the way of allowing Christ to cleanse us and purify us enabling Christ to live within and through us. I see the appreciation of this one point within this book to be life changing and transformative. (Why has no-one told me this before? This is the work of a master!)