Selina O’Grady has written a fascinating book called And Man Created God. It is a review of the world religions at the time of Jesus. Although Selina comes at the subject as a non believer, she is another voice that adds to the many who try to situate Jesus, Paul and the early church in their context. I came away from this book bewildered by the chaotic milieu of religions that the people of Jesus’ day must have found oppressive. When given the chance to hear about God from Jesus, the disciples and Paul I can easily see why their words were indeed “good news”.
The God of Evolution by Denis Edwards. The dialogue between science and religion is maturing. In this age of rapidly developing information, coming at us at such a pace as to cause vertigo for some, this book is a gift of clarity. Fr. Edwards, a priest of the Archdiocese of Adeliade, Australia, brings science and theology together. His insights on the Trinitarian understanding of God and the scientific understanding of evolution are a gift to all. This is a good book to engage you with the mysteries of the universe and the mystery of God.
When Jesus Became God by Richard E. Rubenstein In the three hundred-year period after the Resurrection, it must have been terribly difficult to make sense of all the conflicting claims about Jesus in the very early churches. No agreed upon form of the Bible yet existed. Creeds were being hammered out amidst murder and mayhem even among the bishops, and the struggles for safety from hostile neighbors was ever present. Rubenstein’s very approachable book is a wealth of information about this creative and dangerous time. The sub-title says it succinctly: “The Epic Fight over Christ’s Divinity in the Last Days of Rome”. I think you will find this book very interesting.