Table of Contents (Starred chapters included in Free Preview / Use Discount Code "THX316" for purchase)
Appearing in a custom HTML format, this historical novel can be read on any PC, Mac, tablet, iOS, Android, or Kindle Fire (any device with browser capability). The Messiah Scrolls (2nd edition Feb 2014) shows in a single biblical / fictional narrative the formation and stunningly rapid growth of the original Christian community.
Colorfully capturing an eight month period in 74 AD, most of the novel's geographical and biblical research is factual. In 74 AD, the site of the novel’s fictional settlement of Rhakotis (suggested by the recent discovery, near Alexandria, of what may be the factual Ancient Rhakotis) is argued to be the site of the original Christian community, called Community Zero. The novel's main characters are from the Bible, their lives fictionally extended. Other characters, with only a brief biblical mention, have been fictionally constructed into important personalities in the first century (No historical research exists to say they couldn't ever have been the characters they portray).
Concerns of the novel include:
>> (1) Depict first century, Christian community as practiced by the first disciples, eyewitnesses to Christ and His teaching. The novel dramatizes their superb leadership and organization that answers the key question that has puzzled so many historians:
"How did ten to twelve rag-tag apostles and their cult leader, Jesus, not only stand down the mighty Roman Empire but, by 74 AD, build throughout the known world, two hundred Messiah Communities that eventually established Christianity as a dominant personal, social, cultural, economic and literary force for the next two thousand years?"
>> (2) Draw a deeper personal and social portrait of the famous Apostle John, (and first century New Testament author of the Gospel of John, Three Epistles, and Revelation), including a clear, surprising picture of his later life. John, the novel’s protagonist, leads the disciples through tough canonical choices showing the dialogues that led to the Gospels being written by mid first century and then applied to lives, then, and now.
>> (3) Write a thriller that can be enjoyed by all readers (Christian and otherwise), with John's best friend, the hero of the novel, Tertius Falcon X, at its center. Tertius is mentioned in the New Testament as the scribe for Paul of Tarsus. As a grandson of Cleopatra on his mother’s side and grandson of the Roman Emperor Caesar Augustus on his father’s side, this novel places the Christian conversion of Tertius in the context of many colorful adventures; including time travel with the Apostle John back to encounters with the Human-Divine Jesus.
>> (4) Bring the resources of current day biblical scholarship and fictional literary narrative to bear on many disputed questions regarding first century historical, hermeneutical, cultural, literary and spiritual praxis. A major issue is to bring together Luke the historian and Luke the theologian. While the untold story of John the Apostle is a key arc of this novel, and the energetic Tertius Falcon X is its hero, Luke of Macedonia and his work Luke-Acts provide an essential organizing backbone. A second major issue is to understand how apostolic authority took root in Community Zero; understanding to sufficient depth to perceive in what form apostolic authority resides in the 21st century.
What was life like for the first disciples and Jesus Followers in the time of the First Christian Community (30 BC - 74 AD)? As they struggled to build a Christ Culture, what can we appreciate about those first disciples who were eyewitness to the life and teachings of Jesus Christ? Importantly, the disciple led, first Commons did not abrogate the religious, civil or personal rights of all citizenry as today - but took on the social, cultural, military and political forces which did.
Let us go back to the time of Christian basics en vivo
, a time when Jesus Followers lived and acted with common, missional zeal against the prevailing secular (Roman) and religious (Israelite) culture - free from distinctions between image and action, from intellectual/cultural constructs labeling each other as modern, post-modern, post Christian or non-Christian. Their pure proffered Christian relationships were earthly loving, respectful and merciful yet with a revealed and truthful eternal reckoning. (Read and hear the words of John the Baptist as he gives the ethos of this new, single god community in John 3:25-36).
Reading, studying and reflecting on The Parable of The Messiah Scrolls
will greatly facilitate "going back in time" and renewing our original Christian practice and Commons. The first Christians had what we would now call a “megachurch” of 3000 souls, guided as a community by the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:41). They “devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and fellowship, and to the breaking of bread and the prayers,” (Acts 2:42).
Table of Contents: Below are the chapter titles for The Parable of the Messiah Scrolls
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