How did early Christians remember Jesus--and how did they develop their own "Christian" identities and communities? In this accessible and revelatory book, Greg Carey explores how transgression contributed to early Christian identity in the Gospels, Acts, Letters of Paul, and Revelation. Carey examines Jesus as a friend of sinners, challenger of purity laws, transgressor of conventional masculine values of his time, and convicted seditionist. He looks at early Christian communities as out of step with "respectable" practices of their time. Finally, he provides examples of contemporary Christians whose faith requires them to "do the right thing," even when it means violating current definitions of "respectability."
Greg Carey (Ph.D., Vanderbilt University) is Professor of New Testament, Lancaster Theological Seminary. Carey has also written: Ultimate Things: An Introduction to Jewish and Christian Apocalyptic Literature (2005), and Elusive Apocalypse: Reading Authority in the Revelation to John (1999).
PrefaceChapter 1: "How Do You Know She's a (Sinner)?"Chapter 2: Jesus, Friend of SinnersChapter 3: Jesus and ImpurityChapter 4: We Were Deadbeats, Me and PaulChapter 5: Jesus the Convicted SeditionistInterlude: The Sinless Jesus?Chapter 6: The Scandal(s) of the CrossChapter 7: Flirting with RespectabilityChapter 8: PersecutedEpilogue: Sinners in the Life of the Church