Educated Man

Educated Man

David Rosenberg

Language: English

Pages: 272

ISBN: 2:00124166

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


From this best-selling author comes a magisterial new project: a dual biography of the preeminent figures of Judeo-Christian civilization overturning conventional views of Moses and Jesus as humble men of faith. By reanimating the biographies of Moses and Jesus in their historical context, Rosenberg reads their narrative as a cultural???rather than religious???endeavor. He charges that Moses and Jesus were "educated" men, steeped in the literature and scholarship of their day. There were no old or new testaments for them, only a long history of writing and writers. When scholars and clergy quote Moses and Jesus, they routinely neglect to inform us that Jesus is quoting the Hebrew Bible, often in the manner that Moses quoted Egyptian medical texts. The remarkable ability of both men to recall and transform a wide range of sources is overlooked. Where did they get these profound educations? Part biography, part critical analysis, <i>An Educated Man</i> challenges us to envision what defines "an educated man or woman" today???and how understanding religious history is crucial to it. Rosenberg offers a sympathetic approach to why we need Judeo-Christianity???and ultimately convinces us that the life of Jesus is unthinkable without the model of Moses before him.

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to be “cut off ”; they were the exiles who could not bear to leave Egypt and needed an Egyptian representation of heaven. For that is what the “Heavenly Cow” (not literally a calf) actually was: a deity of compassion, but not the one waiting for us in the singular kingdom of heaven that Moses inscribes and Jesus interprets. We need to know more about the Egyptian “Heavenly Cow,” since it would have been part of Moses’ education in Egypt, but for now we are beginning to encounter and understand

what has been described as Jesus’ authority is his spiritually joyous play with words and Jewish sources. It is the same authority the Jews requested of Moses when they begged him to please get the words from God on his own and then bring these words to them. Clearly, these Galilean Jews listening to Jesus were moved by the interpretive power of his words, and how else could this be known to them without a knowledge of the text that was being interpreted? Only resentment would lead to the

to acknowledge his Egyptian education rather than covering over an Egyptian origin. Perhaps had Freud been younger, he would have investigated the even greater paradox of the biblical Jewish writers who came after Moses—yet who found their authority in Moses as a model of the Jewish writer itself. ··· For three separate biblical authors, known to scholars as J, E, and D, writing in different centuries and at least three centuries after Moses, the story of his life and complex education had

evolved into moral demands, and these would need human writers and thinkers to dramatize in a narrative cosmic theater. It was an inner journey that opened out toward progress in knowledge of human nature and in societal norms. The narrative itself, including the entire Mosaic journey in the wilderness, would be outwardly dramatized by the lives of the later biblical writers themselves. Although we have no biographies of the great Torah writers that followed after Moses, we nevertheless have

himself. And thus the Gospel of Matthew records: “You must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). Here, Matthew is paraphrasing an old saying from the Midrash, and there were many rabbis thinking this way. It is no surprise that Jesus declared, “Love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44). All of it went back to the Torah of Moses and its statement of the Golden Rule. Nowhere else in the New Testament does anyone refer to the commandment in Moses’ Torah to love one’s enemies—no

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