Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Pete Ponders Whether Judas Was Doomed By Bad Judgement or Perhaps a Pawn of Prophecy

Acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Tosca Lee brilliantly adapts the life of Judas Iscariot into a dazzling work of fiction—humanizing the man whose very name is synonymous with betrayal.

Based on extensive research into the life and times of Judas Iscariot, this triumph of fiction storytelling by the author of Havah: The Story of Eve revisits one of biblical history’s most maligned figures and brings the world he inhabited vividly to life.

In Jesus, Judas believes he has found the One—the promised Messiah and future king of the Jews, destined to overthrow Roman rule. Galvanized, he joins the Nazarene’s followers, ready to enact the change he has waited for all his life. But soon Judas’s vision of a nation free from Rome is crushed by the inexplicable actions of the Nazarene himself, who will not bow to social or religious convention—who seems, in the end, to even turn against his own people. At last, Judas must confront the fact that the master he loves is not the liberator he hoped for, but a man bent on a drastically different agenda.

Iscariot is the story of Judas, from his tumultuous childhood to his emergence as the man known to the world as the betrayer of Jesus. But even more, it is a singular and surprising view into the life of Jesus that forces us to reexamine everything we thought we knew about the most famous—and infamous—religious icons in history.

Pete says :
"The novel Iscariot examines the teachings, healing, miracles, and eventually the passion of Jesus Christ from the perspective of Judas, one of the most reviled of biblical characters. This story of Judas had me from the very epilogue where the author writes 'Judas. It was once a good name, a strong name, the name of our people: Judah. It is the dwelling place of the Temple, which is the dwelling place of the Lord.' We hear in popular culture of the 'Judas kiss,' a kiss of betrayal by one so unexpected. Judas is often times referred to as the apostle Jesus loved most, or as his dear friend. Why would he be the one to betray his master for such a paltry sum of silver? Ms. Lee portrays Judas as a thoughtful man, a learned man, but a man caught up in a power struggle he could not rectify or escape unscathed. There were the hated Romans, who bullied when they couldn't keep the peace or collect their taxes. And the high and low priests of the Temple who had agendas all of their own. And what to make of Jesus, of humble origins, who spoke in strange parables, who cavorted with the destitute and befriended women of ill repute? Was this man the Messiah Judas longed for, who could use one of his miracles to drive out the Romans and deliver Israel to freedom? 

There were plenty of 'would be' Messiahs around in those days, and if you chose to follow one, or raise an army in his name, you'd better be all in. Because the Romans didn't mess around, and if you didn't tread wisely there may have been a cross with your name on it too. This is what it was like to be poor Judas, a man with a decision nobody should have to make, a man and his good name doomed by bad judgement or perhaps a pawn to prophecy."

1 comment:

Char said...

This may be the same book that I read a few years ago. It gave me totally different look at Judas Iscariot. The one I read was based on the writings of his son