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In His Name: Comparative Studies in the Quest for the Historical Jesus

Life of Jesus Research in Germany and America


Elisabeth Hurth

Offering a complement and a corrective to Albert Schweitzer's survey of the Leben-Jesu-Forschung, the study examines the emergence and development of the American quest for the historical Jesus. The study describes how the interest in the historical Jesus quest grew in America under the aegis of the Harvard-Göttingen axis and was adjusted to apologetic purposes on the basis of the post-Lockean theology of evidences. The study follows the course of the quest into biblical fiction and the Social Gospel movement and demonstrates that the American quest was marked by a pronounced confidence in the knowability and availability of the historical Jesus which suppressed a sustained concern with form critical procedures and Kerygmatic theology.
Contents: The «Leben-Jesu-Forschung» - The beginnings of American life of Jesus research - The miracles controversy - D.F. Strauss in America - Jesus in biblical fiction - The Social Gospel - Kerygma theology and the new hermeneutic.