Pontius Pilate in History and Interpretation
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Number of Pages: 276
Width: 14.6 cm
Height: 22.4 cm
This study reconstructs the historical Pontius Pilate and looks at the way in which he is used as a literary character in the works of six first century authors: Philo, Josephus and the four evangelists. The first chapter provides an introduction to the history and formation of the imperial Roman province of Judaea. The following two chapters examine the references to Pilate in Philo and Josephus, looking at each author's biases before going on to assess the historicity of their accounts. The next four chapters look at the portrayal of Pilate in each gospel, asking how a first century reader would have interpreted his actions. Each chapter asks what this portrayal shows about the author's attitude towards the Roman state, and what kind of community found this useful. The conclusion distinguishes between the 'historical Pilate' and the different 'Pilate of interpretation' preserved in our first century literary sources.
'A valuable contribution ... thorough and scholarly study.' John Court, Church Times