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At the heart of the Bible is a moral and ethical call to fight unjust superpowers, whether they are Babylon, Rome, or even America. From the divine punishment and promise found in Genesis through the revolutionary messages of Jesus and Paul, John Dominic Crossan reveals what the Bible has to say about land and economy, violence and retribution, justice and peace, and, At the heart of the Bible is a moral and ethical call to fight unjust superpowers, whether they are Babylon, Rome, or even America.
From the divine punishment and promise found in Genesis through the revolutionary messages of Jesus and Paul, John Dominic Crossan reveals what the Bible has to say about land and economy, violence and retribution, justice and peace, and, ultimately, redemption.
In contrast to the oppressive Roman military occupation of the first century, he examines the meaning of the non-violent Kingdom of God prophesized by Jesus and the equality advocated by Paul to the early Christian churches.
Crossan contrasts these messages of peace with the misinterpreted apocalyptic vision from the Book of Revelation, which has been misrepresented by modern right-wing theologians and televangelists to justify U.
In God and Empire Crossan surveys the Bible from Genesis to Apocalypse, or the Book of Revelation, and discovers a hopeful message that cannot be ignored in these turbulent times.
The first-century Pax Romana, Crossan points out, was in fact a "peace" won through violent military action. Jesus preached a different kind of peace—a peace that surpasses all understanding—and a kingdom not of Caesar but of God.
The Romans executed Jesus because he preached this Kingdom of God, a kingdom based on peace and justice, over the empire of Rome, which ruled by violence and force.
For Jesus and Paul, Crossan explains, peace cannot be won the Roman way, through military victory, but only through justice and fair and equal treatment of all people.
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Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Apr 10, marcus miller rated it really liked it Shelves: religion , europe.
Crossan presents an interpretation of history, civilization, and scripture which I found to be thought provoking. Crossan analyzes the nature of civilization and empire and asks if empire is the natural outgrowth of civilization.
Crossan argues that we have come to accept as normal "civilization's program of religion, war, victory, peace Crossan examines the Roman Empire and isn't afraid to draw parallels to the United States.
Using his knowledge of Rome, Crossan examines the life of Jesus and Paul within the matrix not context of the Roman Empire. I found these parts of the book to be fascinating as it added new depths to my understanding of Jesus and scripture.
Crossan also argues that the Bible "presents the radicality of a just and nonviolent God repeatedly and relentlessly confronting the normalcy and of an unjust and violent civilization.
It certainly made me refer to the scriptures he was analyzing. I would encourage people who wonder about the relevance of Christianity to read this book.
Crossan makes the Christian message relevant to Rome and by extension to the United States. This is one of Crossan's finest works.
The basic premise is that the Kingdom of God as understood by Jesus and the lordship of Christ as taught by Paul are anti-imperial - not just anti-Rome, which of course they are, but opposed to what Crossan aptly calls "the normalcy of Civilization.
Crossan argues, quite compellingly, that the normalcy of civilization is both a hierarchy which privileges some and oppresses and exploits others, and also committed to violence - the claim that peace can only be This is one of Crossan's finest works.
Crossan argues, quite compellingly, that the normalcy of civilization is both a hierarchy which privileges some and oppresses and exploits others, and also committed to violence - the claim that peace can only be achieved by violent conquest of one's enemies and violent punishment of those who upset the established order.
Anyone who knows anything about human history will see that Crossan is clearly correct that this is indeed the normal way human civilization operates.
The alternative vision of Jesus and Paul negates the normal ways of civilization. Jesus and Paul preach an egalitarian vision in which all stand equal before God and are called to hare equally in each other's resources.
Equally importantly, Jesus and Paul eschew violence in favor of non-violent approach to living and being. Simply read Matthew , Acts 4: , and Galatians 3: 28 and you will quickly see that Crossan has solid textual support his position Near the end of the book Crossan contrasts the non-violent Jesus of who walked the earth and the fantasy of violent retribution of the Jesus of Revelation and much current theology.
We cannot have both, we must choose either a violent or non-violent Jesus. The former is the Jesus of apocalyptic vengeance, the later the Jesus of history.
The choice is important, Crossan argues, not only because only non-violence and egalitarianism can save the human race, but also because the choice determines how we see God.
Is God a patriarchal and violent deity? Or a non-violent and egalitarian deity? A fine read and a must read for anyone who, as we all should be, is worried about the rise of "violent religion" in much of the world today.
Oct 22, Adna rated it really liked it Shelves: reviewed , english-language. God and Empire is a good introduction to Crossan's view of Jesus as a non-violent 'peace by justice' figure.
Those who have read other works by Crossan will be familiar with this characterization, but this book gives it a solid foundation in historical and biblical accounts of Jesus' life and time, and includes an amusing and enlightening juxtaposition of the titles of Roman Imperial theology with the titles given to Jesus by his followers.
Most interesting to me was Crossan's discussion of the God and Empire is a good introduction to Crossan's view of Jesus as a non-violent 'peace by justice' figure.
Most interesting to me was Crossan's discussion of the letters of Paul: which are really his, and how was the essence of his message changed in the later 'Pauline' letters?
Also interesting was Crossan's analysis of the Book of Revelation, famously labelled 'merely the ravings of a maniac' by Thomas Jefferson, who suggested it was 'no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams'.
Crossan rises to the challenge, and does so quite convincingly. In the end then, Crossan suggests three main forces are at work: the imperial 'peace by victory' crowd that has been the norm of human civilization for thousands of years, the Christian 'peace by justice' movement as promoted by Jesus and Paul, and the genocidal 'peace by death' faction who, one presumes, spends its days waiting for Jesus to appear on his white battle charger, sword in hand.
Crossan is emphatic in his rejection of this latter interpretation of the Christian message, and points out that the battle chargers of today come in the form of intercontinental ballistic missiles and nuclear bombs.
He argues that such a misinterpretation of 'The Second Coming of Christ' is a mistake humanity can ill afford to make.
Though Crossan phrases his questions to his readers in an American context, I suppose they apply equally to Christians in other parts of the world.
He calls on Christians to ask themselves if their God is violent or non-violent, and suggests the life and sayings of Jesus are the answer: "Put your sword back into its place; for all who take the sword will perish by the sword.
Orthodox readers may be familiar with Fr. In other words, the Old Testament is a nonviolent literary assault against the Hellenist kingdom s.
Crossan begins by showing that Rome created an empire of peace Pax Romana through violent Orthodox readers may be familiar with Fr. Crossan begins by showing that Rome created an empire of peace Pax Romana through violent military victory.
Herod the Great, and then Herod Antipas, built their empires by taking a page out of the Roman playbook: romanization through urbanization for commercialization.
In other words, they violently oppressed the Galileans and Judeans at the time of Jesus to build up their own little empires. Notice, God's justice is a nonviolent redistribution rather than a violent retribution as many contemporary Christians think.
I think this search is misleading. There is no Jesus outside of the biblical texts. I highly recommend this book and encourage everyone to be challenged by it.
Aug 14, Emma Maskell rated it really liked it. He references his previous works in his introduction and, to begin with, I felt I may have jumped into the deep end.
However, as I proceeded I found it a compelling read. I often paused for thought finding myself inspired with ideas or new questions to explore.
For example I want to know more about the process of creating a conservative Paul and I will look further into the archaeological findings described.
It is simply enlightening. Even more positively, peaceful insistence upon peace? Perhaps instead we embrace what it is we do stand for without feeling the need to impose it upon others, but by that example others may also embrace the longed for way of peace.
A mentally nourishing and stimulating read. Truly radical. Jun 24, Ross West rated it really liked it. This book is largely an interpretation of Scripture in relation to history that attempts to contrast the vision of God in Scripture and the "normalcy," as Crossan calls it, of the violence of civilization.
In the preface, Crossan states that he is raising "three questions in this book for American Christians or better, for Christian Americans.
In the preface, Crossan states that he is raising "three questions in this book for American Christians — or better, for Christian Americans.
In addition, the book deals much more with biblical times than with more recent times. However, I did find it to be a creative, thought-provoking interpretation of Scripture, especially the over-arching thrust of Scripture as Crossan understands it.
I resonated especially with chapter three, "Jesus and the Kingdom of God," and chapter four, "Paul and the Justice of Equality.
View all 4 comments. May 26, Matthew rated it really liked it Shelves: religion , theology. I normally have an ambivalent relationship with Crossan's work, but I like the direction he is going with this book.
Treating Roman imperial rhetoric as theological statements, Crossan presents early Christianity as a non-violent counter-theology in direct confrontation with Roman "peace through victory".
Good stuff. Timely and important thoughts from Crossan about living in the heart of global empire while attempting to live from the heart and be a disciple of Jesus.
Gods were called Pater "Father" to signify their preeminence and paternal care, and the filial respect owed to them. Pater was found as an epithet of Dis , Jupiter , Mars , and Liber , among others.
Some Roman literary sources accord the same title to Maia and other goddesses. Even in invocations , which generally required precise naming, the Romans sometimes spoke of gods as groups or collectives rather than naming them as individuals.
Some groups, such as the Camenae and Parcae , were thought of as a limited number of individual deities, even though the number of these might not be given consistently in all periods and all texts.
The following groups, however, are numberless collectives. The di indigetes were thought by Georg Wissowa to be Rome's indigenous deities, in contrast to the di novensides or novensiles , "newcomer gods".
No ancient source, however, poses this dichotomy, which is not generally accepted among scholars of the 21st century.
The meaning of the epithet indiges singular has no scholarly consensus, and noven may mean "nine" novem rather than "new". A lectisternium is a banquet for the gods, at which they appear as images seated on couches, as if present and participating.
In describing the lectisternium of the Twelve Great gods in BC, the Augustan historian Livy places the deities in gender-balanced pairs: .
Divine male-female complements such as these, as well as the anthropomorphic influence of Greek mythology, contributed to a tendency in Latin literature to represent the gods as "married" couples or as in the case of Venus and Mars lovers.
Varro uses the name Dii Consentes for twelve deities whose gilded images stood in the forum. These were also placed in six male-female pairs.
A fragment from Ennius , within whose lifetime the lectisternium occurred, lists the same twelve deities by name, though in a different order from that of Livy: Juno, Vesta, Minerva, Ceres, Diana, Venus, Mars, Mercurius, Jove, Neptunus, Vulcanus, Apollo.
The meaning of Consentes is subject to interpretation, but is usually taken to mean that they form a council or consensus of deities. Varro  gives a list of twenty principal gods of Roman religion:.
Varro, who was himself of Sabine origin, gives a list of Sabine gods who were adopted by the Romans:. Elsewhere, Varro claims Sol Indiges , who had a sacred grove at Lavinium , as Sabine but at the same time equates him with Apollo.
Saturn, for instance, can be said to have another origin here, and so too Diana. The indigitamenta are deities known only or primarily as a name; they may be minor entities, or epithets of major gods.
Lists of deities were kept by the College of Pontiffs to assure that the correct names were invoked for public prayers. The books of the Pontiffs are lost, known only through scattered passages in Latin literature.
The most extensive lists are provided by the Church Fathers who sought systematically to debunk Roman religion while drawing on the theological works of Varro, also surviving only in quoted or referenced fragments.
Roscher collated the standard modern list of indigitamenta ,  though other scholars may differ with him on some points.
A number of figures from Greek mythology who were not part of Roman religious practice appear in Latin mythological narratives and as poetic allusions; for these names, see:.
This past week a huge con-spirit-cy his the inter-Nets surrounding the Goddess of Death known as Kali and an environmental company had hit the state of New York.
The reason was over a massive image of Kali image to right and video below that was projected on the Empire State Building by an environmentalist group that has many conspiracy theorists and Christians up in alarm claiming it was some type of satanic ceremony, government conspiracy or Illuminati ritual.
She represents the planet of emotions, death and destruction known as Venus. The date that was chosen for this is exactly 5 weeks fore the 29th of Elul, which is the day that the stock market crashed in and Terry Bennett was shown that our economy would be brought down because of the abortion culture in our nation.
One portrayal of the goddess Kali shows her with earrings made of dead children. I agree with Paul Joseph Watson. This Goddess has always represented death and destruction.
But many New Agers and some ignorant people who obviously have not done their own research or are total shills claim she is representative of Mother Earth.
The Christian website Shoebat. I am in prayer for hours each day. Last week my associate and I were led to go to Manhattan to intercede.
We spent half a day praying for all New York. Please pray for my congregation and my leadership. Please support us in prayer and financially.Your Roman Empire, Pilate, is based on the injustice of violence, but my divine kingdom is based on the justice of non-violence. Fourth, the crucial difference—and the only one mentioned—between the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Rome is Jesus’s non-violence and Pilate’s violence. Shop handcrafted jewelry online at Empire of The Gods. Many styles from different mythologies and cultures at the best price available. Click here to find your new favorite jewel. Patron God of the Empire, Sigmar. Standing above all others in power, the cult of the man-god Sigmar has risen to dominate the Empire since his ascension to godhood by Ulric. Provincial Gods. Across the many provinces of the Empire there are a myriad of minor deities and godlings, the patrons of towns, forests, rivers, lakes, crafts and much more. The Roman Empire was primarily a polytheistic civilization, which meant that people recognized and worshiped multiple gods and goddess. The main god and goddesses in Roman culture were Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva. Alphabetical list A. Abundantia, divine personification of abundance and prosperity. Acca Larentia, a diva of complex meaning and origin B. Bacchus, god of wine, sensual pleasures, and truth, originally a cult title for the Greek Dionysus and identified C. Caca, an archaic fire goddess and.