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Yeshua Jesus: Exploring the Jewish Roots of Jesus

 

Peter Darg, host, Yeshua/Jesus: Exploring the Jewish Roots of Jesus (Gateway Films, distributed by Vision Video www.visionvideo.com). Starring: Barbara Babcock, Ken Howard and Ossie Davis.

As an introduction to Jewish roots studies, Yeshua/Jesus is a good start. It takes a wealth of available information, boils it down, and presents it in an 85-minute film (VHS). Written for the uninitiated, it assumes the viewer knows little and takes them on a whirlwind tour of Israel and Israeli life as it was 2,000 years ago.

Cinematically, it does not compare to a film like the Visual Bibles’ Matthew, but the visuals are adequate for the purpose.

As far as context is concerned, the film covers most aspects of Yeshua’s life with accuracy, save one. The producers, like many other Christians, take the biblical account of Yeshua’s visit to Jerusalem and the temple when he was 12-years old and assume he was participating in a bar mitzvah. As a matter of history, the tradition of the bar mitzvah took root in European Jewish society during the Middle Ages. Yeshua was likely accompanying his father to the temple to learn what would be expected from him the next year, which, being of age, he would be required to offer his own Passover lamb. That appeared to be the only subject where history met misinterpretation.

Overall, the film is a reasonable entry-level to Jewish Roots information.

Reviewed by Kevin M. Williams

 

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Category: Biblical Studies, Summer 2003

About the Author: Kevin M. Williams, Litt.D., H.L.D. has served in Messianic ministries since 1987 and has written numerous articles and been a featured speaker at regional and international conferences on Messianic Judaism.

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