Lost Narrative of Jesus, The

Lost Narrative of Jesus, The

deciphering the transfiguration

The strange, fragmented story of the transfiguration is pieced together, revealing something altogether unexpected: the greatest Christian mystery resolved.


CATEGORIZED IN

The greatest Christian mystery resolved!
Of all the stories about Jesus, the transfiguration has been the most difficult to understand. It contains improbable, miraculous elements: a secret meeting on a mountain with Moses and Elijah - both long since dead, God speaking from a cloud, Jesus with his face and clothes transfigured by heavenly light. The story sits, with curious inconsistencies, uneasily in the gospels.
There are two current theories: either that it is an allegory or a misplaced post-resurrection account. The author carefully analyses the text to show that neither is right and, in the course of his investigation, causes the pieces of the puzzle to fall dramatically back into place.

Reviews at http://mysticlivingtoday.com/view_page.php?ID=1545 and in the Progressive Christian Network magazine

Article published in The Heretic magazine issue 9 on Apr 29 2016 http://thehereticmagazine.com/page/3/

REVIEWS & ENDORSEMENTS

The Lost Narrative of Jesus: deciphering the transfiguration, by Peter Cresswell, Christian Alternative NT scholars face a daunting task. With no accounts written during Jesus’ life, no original surviving documents, a few fragments of text some 200 years after the events and more complete copies from 100 years after that – all copied and amended by partial editors many times over –what hope of distinguishing history from the muddle? At least we can admire the scholars for their persistence as fresh studies continue to appear. This book examines two puzzles: the abrupt ending to Mark’s gospel and the position in chapter 9 of the story of the Transfiguration. Is there any connection between these two? A convincing case is made that the Transfiguration story does not fit in its context. Instead he proposes that this story fits in better as an ending to the gospel. Was this another post-resurrection appearance of Jesus? It bears mysterious features that might suggest it is. If so, is it the missing ending of the earliest (and lost) version of Mark’s gospel? Why was it “folded” into chapter 9 before Matthew and Luke used Mark as one of their sources? (They both firmly place this story during Jesus’ ministry.) The author rejects the idea that the Transfiguration is a post-resurrection appearance. On the contrary he argues that this was an historic event that occurred, probably on Mount Hermon, after the crucifixion when Jesus and some disciples returned to Galilee. To support this hypothesis he makes a plausible case for Jesus being taken down from the cross alive. After recovering in a safe house from his ill treatment and wounds, he with Peter and Andrew return to Galilee just as the young man in the tomb tells those looking for the body. The Mount Hermon meeting with two strangers was to arrange for an outlawed Jesus to escape to safety in Syria. The case for this hypothesis is well argued, but corroborating evidence is inevitably scarce. Although there is a deal of repetition throughout the book, it is intriguing and eminently readable. ~ Robin Story, Progressive Voices

It is refreshing to read an analysis of gospel narrative that does not seek any illusory, underlying truth. While accepting the transfiguration story as possibly entirely fictional, Cresswell has striven with some success to see how it was put together. The clues may be sparse, but the author’s conclusions are both plausible and challenging. ~ Professor Robert Eisenman, author of James the Brother of Jesus, The New Testament Code, The Dead Sea Scrolls and the First Christians

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Peter Cresswell
Peter Cresswell What’s different? Christian Alternative is looking for a genuinely liberal and provocative approach to faith, ethics and institutional religion. We want to understand why, despite the Enlightenment and secularization, Christian writers and preachers often cling to pre-modern theological ideas. Why is talk of radical orthodoxy usually more orthodox than radical?

This leads into an interest in Public Theology – the interface between religious ideas and other disciplines such as science, politics, secular ethics, and the arts. Science and philosophy pose key questions, but we also want to explore theology through metaphor, poetry, visual art, and music.

Christian Alternative looks to provoke. Jonathan Swift wrote to Pope that ‘the chief end I propose to myself in all my labours is to vex the world rather than divert it.’ A bit of vexing is good for theology. We aim to wrestle with big religious and ethical questions without being tied to any dogma or church, to meet people where they are, and to be ready to jettison redundant imagery and esoteric ideas of heresy.

For authors: We accept unsolicited manuscripts. Please go to Author Inquiry and fill out the form. We offer traditional publishing contracts with royalties, and occasional subsidy contracts. We have an extensive Author Guide which explains all that an author needs to know about publishing books. Our sales teams sell to all chain and independent booksellers in the UK, USA, and English-speaking territories worldwide, plus online retailers. Our umbrella company is John Hunt Publishing Ltd.
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