BIBLE JESUS USED by Yomi Segun  Falade

BIBLE JESUS USED

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Falade makes the heterodox argument that the Bible as most Christians know it requires a severe redaction.

The author maintains that the only reliable verses of the Bible are quotations from Jesus Christ and verses pertaining to his life and teachings. Here he presents his own re-created scriptural text, preceded by lengthy introductory materials. Falade basically discounts the majority of the Old Testament, maintaining the veracity of only those few verses that either portend the coming of Christ or are directly connected to the teachings of Jesus. Likewise, large portions of the New Testament are discounted. Though he has admiration for those who passed Scriptures down through the centuries, he believes scholars and church leaders unnecessarily added to an otherwise perfect collection of “Canonicity,” as he puts it, which he refers to as “the Bible Jesus used.” He goes on to claim that he is “perfecting” the Bible in his efforts: “Perfecting means ridding the texts of attributes that are not consistent with the divine nature of the Christ.” Falade cites hundreds of verses and statements that he considers inconsistencies. (For instance, in Matthew and Luke, Jesus says he came to bring not peace, but a sword; yet in John, Jesus says “In me you have peace.”) This revised version includes a variety of quotes from and references to the Old Testament and to the sayings and actions of Jesus. The final product, according to the author, is shorter than the original four Gospels, and only 2 percent of it is based on the Old Testament. Falade’s verbiage is highly cluttered and hard to follow, and a thorough edit of his introductory pages would make his subsequent material much easier to understand. Though other modern scholars have attempted to identify “the historical Jesus” or a core of authentic Bible verses (e.g., The Jesus Seminar), Falade’s own methodology for saving certain portions of Scripture and discarding others is simply unclear, opening him up to criticism by academics and lay readers alike. Nevertheless, the author has labored through an extremely close reading of the Scriptures and displays a high level of knowledge regarding the intricacies of Jesus’ teachings and the Bible as a whole.

A simplification of the Bible that needs a thorough edit.

Page count: 156pp
Publisher: manuscript
Program: Kirkus Indie
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