Who was Jesus? A prophet? There have been many of those. A miracle-worker? A radical revolutionary? A wise teacher? There have been many of these, too. In his latest book, renowned Scripture scholar Gerhard Lohfink asks, What is unique about Jesus of Nazareth, and what did he really want?
Lohfink engages the perceptions of the first witnesses of his life and ministry and those who handed on their testimony. His approach is altogether historical and critical, but he agrees with Karl Barth's statement that "historical criticism has to be more critical."
Lohfink takes seriously the fact that Jesus was a Jew and lived entirely in and out of Israel's faith experiences but at the same time brought those experiences to their goal and fulfillment. The result is a convincing and profound picture of Jesus.
Gerhard Lohfink was professor of New Testament exegesis at the University of Tübingen. Since 1986, he has lived and worked as a theologian for the Catholic Integrated Community. His many books include Does God Need the Church? (Liturgical Press, 1999).