Jesus as Philosopher: The Moral Sage in the Synoptic Gospels
Hardcover – July 30, 2018
While Thorsteinsson discusses a number of Graeco-Roman sources, the emphasis is on the question of how these parallel texts help us better to understand the Gospel authors' perception and presentation of the character of Jesus. While the fields of theology and ethics are often intertwined in these texts, including the philosophical texts, Thorsteinsson's main focus is the ethical aspect. He argues that the Gospel authors drew in some ways on classical virtue ethics. The study concludes that the Gospel authors inherited stories and sayings of Jesus that they wanted to improve upon and recount as truthfully as possible, and they did so in part by making use of philosophical traditions about the ideal sage, especially that of Stoicism and Cynicism.
About the Author
Runar M. Thorsteinsson is Professor of New Testament in the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Iceland. He is the author of Roman Christianity and Roman Stoicism: A Comparative Study of Ancient Morality (Oxford University Press, 2010).