Item description for Josephus-The Complete Works (Repack) by William Whiston...
Overview This comprehensive collection from the legendary Jewish historian sets up the historical relevance of first-century events, leaving behind substantial evidence for the authenticity of biblical record. Illustrations.
Encounter the world and traditions that Jesus knew. Illuminate your understanding of the New Testament. In The Complete Works you will discover what the New Testament writers knew about Abraham, Moses, Samuel, David, and Solomon and examine an in-depth history of Herod and his infamous family.
Josephus left us the earliest independent accounts of the lives of Jesus, John the Baptist, and James the brother of Jesus. Much of what we know about the beliefs of the Sadducees and Pharisees comes from Josephus. Without Josephus, we would know very little about the Essenes, the ancient Jewish group most frequently associated with the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Features include: "The War of the Jews"--an account of the Jewish revolt against Rome up to the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem"The Antiquities of the Jews"--a history of the Jews from Creation to the Roman occupation of Palestine"The Life of Flavius Josephus"--the autobiography of Josephus, who fought against Rome and later served the empire "Against Apion"--a defense of the origin of Judaism in the face of Greco-Roman slanders"Discourse to the Greeks Concerning Hades"--a text Whiston attributed to JosephusIndex of parallels between Josephus's "Antiquities" and the Old Testament including the Apocrypha
About Flavius Josephus
Josephus was a first-century Pharisee, soldier, informant to the Romans, and writer. He left behind the most extensive writings on ancient Jewish history still in existence.
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Studio: Thomas Nelson
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.52" Width: 6.44" Height: 1.67" Weight: 2.36 lbs.
Release Date Jul 30, 2003
Publisher Thomas Nelson
Edition First Trade Pap
Series Nelson Super Value
ISBN 0785250506 ISBN13 9780785250500
Reviews - What do customers think about Josephus-The Complete Works (Repack) S/S?
Bring Josephus to Life Oct 18, 2006
This is a great book to complete or add to your knowledge of the times when Jesus lived. Josephus was a scholar and not a christian or follower of Jesus, but really documented life around him as he saw it. A lot that he wrote gives the manner and customs of the time and makes 2000 yrs ago come to light. He is very detailed and a great journalist. A must for any biblical scholar of today.
The begining of the beginning of the Middle East conflict. Feb 13, 2004
This is a great book, a must read.
A lot of reviewers are Christians who value this book for providing the historical background to the New Testament, since Josephus lived very close to that time period. Yes, definitely, this book has value for that purpose.
Much of the book is a re-telling of the history of the Jews, stuff from the Old Testament/Tanakh, which Josephus knew well from his origins as a Pharisee.
In my view, though, the book is most important for a reason only briefly mentioned by other reviewers - the book answers a central question that has always struck me whenever I read about the modern history of the Jewish people and the re-establishment of the State of Israel - how did it come to pass that the Jews lost their homeland in Palestine in the first place? Few modern Jewish historians ever go back that far and write about this subject.
In this book, Flavius Josephus gives a detailed and grisly eyewitness account of the destruction of Jerusalem and the slaughter of over 1.3 million Jews (he provides the number of dead in this book), and later enslavement of tens of thousands of the survivors, by the Romans in 70 A.D. This all came about as a result of the unyielding Jewish rebellion against Roman rule.
It was this destruction of Jerusalem, and the Great Temple, that directly led to the Jewish Diaspora. (The Wailing Wall, or Western Wall, is all that's left today of the Temple).
Which was what caused the Jews to be dispersed all over Europe. Which eventually led to the Holocaust. Which led to the Zionist movement (initially only a fringe movement with few converts willing to move back to Palestine) succeeding in finding the converts and refugees willing to return to the heartland of their faith. The rapid flood of Jews into Palestine and the war that resulted from the re-establishment of the State of Israel all led to the displacement of the then current inhabitants, the Arab Palestinians. Which of course brings us to where we are today.....
Few Jews seem to care much for Josephus, and certainly he gives them good reason to be thought of as a traitor. After all, he did start out as one of the leaders of the Jewish rebellion against the Romans, and ended up as a Roman collaborator in the destruction of Jerusalem.
After initial success fighting against the Romans, Josephus became trapped in one of the rebelling towns. When his fellow rebels could not be dissuaded to surrender, he proposed that they all commit suicide by drawing lots and having each man in sequence kill the one before him. Josephus managed to be the last one in line, and then, being the last one alive, didn't follow through with his own suicide.
After being captured by the forces of the Roman general Vespasian, Josephus then managed to save himself by making a prediction that Vespasian would become emperor. I found it interesting that Vespasian, who was no fool, clearly thought that Josephus was just sucking up to him and did not release him right away. Instead, Vespasian kept Josephus imprisoned until, miraculously, Josephus's prediction came true (after Nero's suicide and a civil war with a succession of three other Roman generals claiming the throne, Vespasian emerged victorious as the new emperor).
No, Josephus was not a really admirable sort of fellow. And as his account is one of the few that describes the destruction of Jerusalem (and of many other mass killings of Jews during this time, including the story of what happened at Masada), it is easy to see why Jews would not want to re-visit this part of their history.
In his description of the siege of Jerusalem, there are plenty of details of the internecine hatred that existed between the Jews and the various other peoples of the Middle East, even back then. A lot of these other people took advantage of this siege to get their revenge against the Jews stuck in Jerusalem.
Yes, read this book, and you will come to understand that the origins of the Middle East conflict of today goes back some 2,000 years, back to the time that Jerusalam was destroyed and the Jewish people dispersed. This book tells how all of that happened, and how it all started.
too much a christian slant Jul 13, 2003
this book seeks to validate (through footnotes) biblical fairy tales. If the translator would have just stuck to the writings it would have made the read a bit more entertaining.
Indespensible Mar 24, 2003
As a person who works in the field of New Testament Studies and more specifically 1st century Jewish/Christian liturgy, I can tell you that the complete works of Josephus are almost as indispensable as the Biblical and Talmudic texts themselves. Josephus works as an apologist for the Jews to the Romans, and a dedicated historian. He collects streams of tradition concerning the evolution of the Jewish people that we might not otherwise have. Because of his mentioning of Jesus and some of his disciples (most notably John and James), his work has been under intense scrutiny. However, he does have the benefit of being contemporaneous to the events, something we as modern scholars are not, despite what we may or may not like to think. This is the work of a man who wanted to set the record straight, and he is concerned with records that the Hebrew Bible was too early for, the NT was unconcerned with, and the Talmud missed entirely. If you really want to know what first century Jews, especially the aristocracy, thought about anything, Josephus, along with Philo, is your guy.
Captivating reading Mar 18, 2002
Anyone interested in the modern view of the Jewish faith and the Jewish people must start in the past, and this book is the canonical reference. In addition, anyone who is interested in Biblical history and apologetics will be interested in the reading of this book, as well as those involved in the study of the ancient Greek language. The translator includes passages in original Greek for these readers, and as one who was learning ancient Greek at the time I read it, it was helpful to have these included in the book. It would take an established expert however to judge whether the translation of Whiston, who lived in the time of Isaac Newton, is in any sense an adequate one.
One also learns briefly of the life of Josephus, and gains an insight as to why Josephus chose to write this lengthy history of the Jewish people. What is most interesting about the reading of Josephus is his reliance on Jewish scriptures for delineating the history of the Jewish people before his time. He departs from this however when discussing the events of his own time. In addition, the reader obtains a discussion of the famous passages in Josephus on the historical authenticity of John the Baptist and Jesus Christ, these being questioned by some scholars of Josephus.