Desire of the Everlasting Hills: The World Before and After Jesus

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  • Desire of the Everlasting Hills : Thomas Cahill : .
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It's a pleasure to read Cahill's books. Firstly he writes on transitional histories, subjects about which he's both passionate and knowledgeable. Secondly he brings those eras to life with new to me information and brilliant texture for the settings and the subjects.

In Desire of the Everlasting Hills he brings the transitional event of Jesus of Nazareth to new light. In exploring the essential Jewishness of the place and of the people he shows that this man's teachings were a new doctrine and It's a pleasure to read Cahill's books. In exploring the essential Jewishness of the place and of the people he shows that this man's teachings were a new doctrine and that he was quite the popular figure among the poor and outcast while being a threat to the establishment Jews of the day.

He weaves together all the elements of life in the region and shows how those elements combined with Roman rule could have contributed to the life and death of an inspirational rabbi.

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Then he shows how the gospels and the new testament came to be written - all the while a new church was growing, changing, and solidifying as a world power. I learned quite a bit from this book and while I won't begin to tell you all of it, I will recommend it. Jul 07, A. Review: Cahill, Thomas. I am treating them together because, as one might expect, they share many strengths and weaknesses of the author, Thomas Cahill.

Desire of the Everlasting Hills : Thomas Cahill :

Heretics and Heroes was the first book I read, it being a gift, and, therefore, re Review: Cahill, Thomas. Heretics and Heroes was the first book I read, it being a gift, and, therefore, required reading. It covers the period including the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation, a period with which I had nodding acquaintance. I was overwhelmed at the apparent scholarship of the author. I especially appreciated the discussions of art, a subject with which I am fairly ignorant. The writing is superb: it reads like a novel.

Inspired by it, I read a couple of books on the period and its persons, especially Erasmus, all to my benefit, but not necessarily to the benefit of Thomas Cahill. However, I enjoyed Heroes so much that I determined to read the others in the series. Having some knowledge of the subject, I found this slender work very enjoyable—Cahill writes very well—but unconvincing.

The copious quotations recalled to mind the copious quotations in Heroes. He did not prove his point to me, nor did he make a plausible case for salvific Irish. The Gifts of the Jews continued the bravura elegance and style of Cahill, but, having substantial knowledge of Jewish history, religion, and customs, I found the work lacking. Much of the work comprises quotations from the Hebrew Bible, with extrapolations of the text into possible meanings, but without meaningful comment on the validity of the quoted text: where did it come from?

Further, apparent contradictions in extrapolated meanings were not discussed. Sailing the Wine Dark Sea had a distinct advantage over How the Irish Saved Civilization and The Gifts of the Jews: the now-expected extensive quotations reflected elegant Greek writers who had something to say.

He, correctly, let them speak. The Desire of the Everlasting Hills disappointed me in the extreme, probably because I know this subject very well. I kept making marginal notes as to the unfounded conclusions of the author based upon a text not validated by common sense historical standards, all the time admiring his use of very extensive quotations and brilliant style as superb technique.


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After all, I read five of his works. The deficiency of this work will be apparent to anyone who has read the New Testament seriously enough to consult scholarly opinion which may differ from personally held beliefs. Cahill is a storyteller par excellence. Storytellers, however, long ago evolved into historians, a breed which developed a formal discipline rigorous enough to characterize it as a science. This may be a loss to literature, but not to science. Read Cahill as a storyteller.

You will very likely enjoy his writing. Jul 22, Linda rated it really liked it Shelves: ancient-world , nonfiction , history , religion.

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This is the 3rd in Thomas Cahill's Hinges of History series. Like its predecessors, this book is well written and researched.

He examines the impact of the teachings of Jesus on Western culture, through an in-depth analysis of the writings of Peter, Paul, Luke, and John. It is an interesting and insightful book,. May 22, Matt rated it liked it Shelves: religion , reads , history-church , reads. The hinge in history that has been the central pillar of Western civilization is not a cultural change nor a particular people but one man, Jesus of Nazareth. Thomas Cahill explores the developments of thought before and after Jesus in Desire of the Everlasting Hills through the lens of Greco-Roman and Jewish cultures, his mother Mary, Paul, Luke, Early Christians, and John to reveal how one life both continued and changed the progression of Western thought.

Over the course of pages, Thomas C The hinge in history that has been the central pillar of Western civilization is not a cultural change nor a particular people but one man, Jesus of Nazareth. Over the course of pages, Thomas Cahill focused on Jesus of Nazareth as the central figure in the West. However from the outset Cahill makes it clear that the role of Jesus is how others perceived him both during his life and after his time on Earth. The second is partially related and that is Cahill tries to weave a middle course between Jesus as man and Jesus as divine without really take a stand either way.

While objectivity can be commended, the book read as a Christian trying too hard to look discuss Jesus from a secular point of view. Thomas Cahill attempts to bring forth Jesus through the view of those around him and how they interpreted his life and teachings.

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Jun 12, Emily rated it liked it Shelves: , audiobooks , non-fiction. Apparently, I did read this book a long time ago. Well, I listened to it on audiobook again this week and I have new thoughts. I also liked the book more for being on CD. This book was recommended to me over a decade ago by an ex-boyfriend.

Desire of the Everlasting Hills

It is perfectly delightful to come across books this way. On to the book itself! Cahill is a bit too sympathetic to Paul for my tastes, but he did convince me to love him more.

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A Jewish woman told the author that she had no interest whatsoever in becoming a Christian but that she loves Jesus and considers him one of her own. I dropped the trappings of formal Christianity years ago, but I still love Jesus. Aug 03, Kurt rated it liked it Shelves: nonfiction-in Really more like 3. This was a good book overall, definitely learned something. I really had a tough time with some of the historical research methods of identifying writing and style.

It was good because it helped me think about my preconceived notions that were based on no knowledge, but I was disappointed by ideas like the assertion that certain books attributed to Paul within the text itself could not have been written by him simply because of the academic consensus was that the idea Really more like 3.

It was good because it helped me think about my preconceived notions that were based on no knowledge, but I was disappointed by ideas like the assertion that certain books attributed to Paul within the text itself could not have been written by him simply because of the academic consensus was that the ideas in one book seem to be somewhat at odds with his other writings. I guess there was not quite enough rigor presented with these arguments for my taste. But, perhaps he is asserting something that has been rigorously examined within the appropriate academic theological literature and simply summarizing rather than arguing; if so, I missed it.

Also, while his description of the majority of Paul's writings and the Synoptic gospels resonated with my own personal understandings of the teachings, his depiction of the Gospel of John seemed borderline outrageous relative to my experience in reading it. As someone who has only read John in it's entirety meaning as a single, whole item rather than a chapter here and there maybe 3 times, its possible I'm just being obtuse, but to me it seemed dangerously close to the very thing he was pointing out John's Gospel was not, which is a Gnostic Gospel.

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