1998 0-7734-2440-7 This book is an exploration of Jesus' social origins and location in the society of his time and place. The hypothesis proposed is that Jesus was of slave status because he was born of a woman who was a slave. Contends that his career outside his household of origin was as a "freedman" with continuing obligations to his former owner. This hypothesis explains much that is otherwise obscure in the early Christian writings concerning Jesus, and facilitates reconstruction of his life and crucifixion. The book applies adaptations of methodologies used by the Jesus Seminars of the Westar Institute, of which the writer was a Fellow, to determine the historicity of teaching ascribed to Jesus.
Table of Contents: Introduction; Jesus as a Slave - Historical Plausibility; In the Form of a Slave; Slave or Son? John's Gospel; Slave Experience in Jesus' Teaching; From Slave to Slave/Child of God - the Synoptic Gospels and the Acts; An Outlaw Slave and the Jewish Law - the Synoptic Gospels; A Fugitive Slave and His Community in the Synoptic Gospels; Condemnation and Death of an Upstart Slave; Family and Birth Traditions; Conclusions and Reflections; Bibliography and Index