Dangerous Messiah

Julie Galambush from her article “Early Christianity in a Jewish Context”:

A miracle-worker hailed as the Messiah, Jesus was clearly remarkable, but by no means unique, in the first-century Jewish world. Other miracle-workers are known to have lived and other messiahs to have died in Roman-controlled Judea. More remarkable than the few facts we can piece together about Jesus are the actions of his followers after his death. A crucified messiah was by definition a failed messiah – indeed, a dangerous messiah, as Rome had an interest in shutting down any lingering support for his cause. But, according to the Gospel accounts, soon after Jesus’ death some of his followers had experiences convincing them that he had been raised from the dead – resurrected.

The Wiley-Blackwell History of Jews and Judaism, 143.

Plenty to disagree with (such as Jesus’ lack of uniqueness; only being able to piece together a few facts about him; and the actions of his followers being more remarkable than Jesus himself), but she’s absolutely correct, Jesus was a dangerous Messiah, as his rule, vindicated by his resurrection, which we celebrate tomorrow, overthrows the rule of all others. His death wasn’t enough to stop his rule since death was swallowed up in victory (1 Cor. 15:54 cf. Isa. 25:8)!



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