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Pontius Pilate: A Documentary Novel [Hardcover]

By Paul L. Maier (Author)
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Item description for Pontius Pilate: A Documentary Novel by Paul L. Maier...

The startling yet untold story of the ambitious and successful Roman politician whose fateful verdict forever changes the course of history-but whose conscience can never rest with the consequences. Paul L. Maier brings to life the Roman governor of Judea as he rises from the political intrigues of imperial Rome and survives the treacherous plotting of Herod Antipas. Behind him stands Procula, a wife who fires his ambition for political advancement, while before him stands a bewildering clash of Jewish leaders, national extremists, and religious zealots.

Publishers Description
This dramatic historical fiction offers a behind-the-scenes story of an ambitious Roman politician whose fateful decision changed the course of history. Guaranteed fiction

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Kregel Publications
Pages   370
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.25" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.5"
Weight:   1.35 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Mar 14, 1990
Publisher   Kregel Publications
ISBN  0825432618  
ISBN13  9780825432613  

Availability  0 units.

More About Paul L. Maier

Paul L. Maier Dr. Paul L. Maier is the Russell H. Seibert Professor of Ancient History at Western Michigan University and a much-published author of both scholarly and popular works. His novels include two historical documentaries — Pontius Pilate and The Flames of Rome — as well as A Skeleton in God’s Closet, a theological thriller that became a #1 national bestseller in religious fiction when it first released. Sequels, More than a Skeleton and The Constantine Codex, followed in 2003 and 2011.

His nonfiction works include In the Fullness of Time, a book that correlates sacred with secular evidence from the ancient world impinging on Jesus and early Christianity; Josephus: The Essential Works, a new translation / commentary on writings of the first-century Jewish historian; and Eusebius: The Church History, a similar book on the first Christian historian. More than five million of Maier’s books are now in print in twenty languages, as well as over 250 scholarly articles and reviews in professional journals.

Dr. Maier lectures widely, appears frequently on national radio, television, and newspaper interviews, and has received numerous awards. He has also penned seven children’s books and hosted six video seminars dealing with Jesus, St. Paul, the early church, and current Christianity.

Paul L. Maier lived in the state of Michigan. Paul L. Maier was born in 1662 and died in 1752.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Biblical
2Books > Subjects > Health, Mind & Body > Exercise & Fitness > Pilates
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Fiction & Poetry > Fiction
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Fiction > General
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Fiction

Christian Product Categories
Books > Fiction > General Christian > Historical

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Reviews - What do customers think about Pontius Pilate: A Documentary Novel?

Another solid novel by Maier  Mar 7, 2008
I had to get this book after reading "The Flames of Rome." I did not enjoy this novel as much as "Flames," but it still was an entertaining and informative read. I think I learned a lot of Biblical history by reading this book, without the boredom sometimes associated with historical reading. This is an entertaining read for someone looking for an author who doesn't make his stories too complex with figurative language and lengthy, detailed descriptions. Maier effectively brings characters to life without getting lost in the wording. The story flows well.
Pontius Pilate  Oct 25, 2007
Pontius Pilate is an accurate historical account of the events in 1st century Rome, yet presented a easy to understand novel format. The entrance of Christ into history is told from the perspective of Pilate, a Roman Prefect governing Judea, an unreligious and logical Roman ruler.

Paul Maier presents often misunderstood details and facts, weaving them into an interesting tapestry of rich and vibrant color. He brings practical reasoning to a subject often difficult to comprehend.

Seeing this history-making and life-changing event from a purely secular Roman viewpoint colors it uniquely and makes for fascinating reading.
Great! Absolutely Great!  Sep 20, 2007
This book was a great read...then when I realized all the research Paul Maier did in creating this book, I was awed.

According to the author's notes, Maier researched all historical references available about Pilate, Roman politics, and general life in Judea during the time of Christ. Maier then fills in the missing parts with his own fictional "filler" that fits the historical facts.

I have loaned this book out dozens of times and my friends and family are also amazed. Everybody loves the book. I'm certain you will too.
What a great read  Apr 14, 2007
What a great book. It's historically accurate and makes learning history fun. It's also a great book to learn about the relationship between the Jews and the Roman and that fateful trial. I recommend it highly, specially for teens who don't want to learn history the old way. Maier predates Dan Brown in this genre and has a key difference, he has the credentials and the accuracy to write a novel that takes no creative license with history.
A Masterpiece Of Scholarship And Literature  Apr 5, 2007
Too many great Biblical novels, especially those that were made into great movies in the 1950s and 60s, suffered from the fact that they constructed narratives that required a wild dose of historical speculation or embellishment that doesn't square with the accounts we've learned from the Gospels and from the archeological record.

But Paul Maier, a Biblical scholar and historian, found a new way of writing a good novel that *also* manages to be informative and scholarly, and it's a pity that his approach has not been emulated by others. In "Pontius Pilate", Maier starts with *every* known historical fact about Pilate, and constructs his fictional narrative with a keen eye on connecting that which is known. There are no fictional characters at the centerpiece as in classic novels like "The Robe" and "Ben Hur." Along the way, Maier, as a scholar, gives us documented footnotes to explain why he has written the narrative this way and referred the reader to appropriate primary sources from Antiquity.

The end result is both a book that gives us a compelling narrative AND enlightens amateur Biblical historians about the scholarly record and what we should consult further. That is the greatness of this work, and along the way I gained more insight and understanding of the Roman politics affecting the governing of Judea at the time of Christ. In particular, Maier enlightens the reader of how Pilate's background likely suggested ties to the notorious Sejanus, who was executed by Emperor Tiberius for conspiring against him. Since Sejanus was disdainful of the Jews, Pilate's association with him might have led to the incidents documented in Philo and Josephus that caused relations to be bad with the Jews (the matter of displaying the Emperor's image on iconic standards, and the use of Temple money to construct an aqueduct). Afterwards, with Tiberius imposing a more pro-Jewish policy, Pilate would have found himself forced to curry more favor with the Jews, lest they complain to Tiberius who might find reason to remove Pilate based on his past associations with Sejanus.

And in that context, we then understand perhaps the real reason for why at the trial of Jesus, Pilate was told, "If you free this man, you are no friend of Caesar." and why despite the misgivings he seemed to have, he felt compelled to give in. This is likely a true indicator of Pilate's character and motives, and it's worth noting that Mel Gibson's "Passion Of The Christ" essentially uses this interpretation of Pilate that Maier offers in his film.

Maier also depicts Pilate's wife Procula (Maier does not refer to her as "Claudia Procula" because he notes that the name "Claudia" comes from a much later tradition than the name Procula) as someone who tentatively is moving in the direction of faith in Christ by story's end. Since history does not tell us conclusively what happened to Pilate after he was recalled by Tiberius, Maier leaves the question of his fate open-ended and while this might not be satisfying to those expecting a more clean narrative, it still works in this genre and one comes away feeling that their knowledge of the 1st century AD has been enhanced greatly.

The pity is that this novel never received big screen epic movie treatment, because it deserved it a lot more than other well-noted Biblical novels that did reach the big screen.

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