Reminder: The Meaning of Jesus and Jesus of Montreal Coming Up for Discussion


(system) #1

Just a reminder of this month's book and film club discussion selections. In keeping with the quarterly's focus, we're choosing a book and a film about Jesus. Please encourage friends, family, Sabbath School class members--anyone you think might be interested--to join us.

May 2008 (Discussion starts June 2) Book: The Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions by N.T. Wright and Marcus Borg

Amazon.com Editorial Description: The Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions is a theological remix of the old Cole Porter song "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off." In alternating chapters, the (mostly) liberal Marcus J. Borg and the (mostly) conservative N.T. Wright consider the major questions of the historical-Jesus debate that has dominated biblical studies in the 1990s. Borg and Wright agree that Jesus was the Christian messiah and preached the Kingdom of God, but they disagree about the Virgin birth, the purpose of Jesus' death, the issue of his bodily resurrection, and the question of his divinity. The Ping-Pong structure of this book and the fastidious politeness with which the authors treat one another sometimes give The Meaning of Jesus a tomato/tomahto, potato/potahto bounciness, but the project is nevertheless worthy: this is a simple, clear orientation to some of the most important biblical questions of our time, and a record of a lively and loving friendship between two of the best Christian scholars alive.

The book club discussion will be led by Gary Chartier.

Film: (Classic Film Night) Jesus of Montreal Note: This film is also available on Netflix.

See a trailer of the film here.

Amazon.com Editorial Description: What happens to the people putting on a Passion Play? Someday Mel Gibson may tell us, but Denys Arcand's Jesus of Montreal proposes an engaging possibility. In hip present-day Montreal, a group of actors stages the Passion in an outdoor, somewhat avant-garde style, led by the quietly charismatic and increasingly uncanny young man (Lothaire Bluteau, Black Robe) playing Christ. His identification with the role, and the way it bleeds into real life, gives director Denys Arcand plenty of opportunities for social comment--some of it spot-on, some of it a little facile. But the fragile Bluteau is such a fascinating lead presence (the other actors are familiar from Arcand's Barbarian Invasions and Decline of the American Empire) that the movie's spell lasts long after it's over. Turns out the French-Canadian approach to the Passion can be just as intriguing as the original Aramaic.

The film club discussion will be led by Rich Hannon.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/594