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Here for the ordinary reader is an unforgettable moment-by-moment account that brings to vivid life the powerful events that transpired between Jesus’ Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane and His death on the Cross at Golgotha.
Told accurately and in a manner in¬teresting and intelligible, it actually provides a fuller treatment of the Passion than is found in the Gospels. You see, those Gospels were written for first century readers already familiar with many of the persons, places, parties, and politics that colored events in those long-past days. Not so modern readers, twenty centuries later! Which is why Fr. Ralph Gorman has here crafted for us a single detailed narrative out of the four Gospels, weaving into his narrative relevant Old Testament passages and prophecies, and facts from Jewish and Roman history, laws, beliefs, traditions, and practices, plus helpful first century military, political, geographical, and archaeological information.
Faithful to the Gospels while drawing on the best commentaries on them in English, Latin, French, German, and Italian, these rich pages provide you a refreshing reading of the Gospels supplemented by reliable archaeological, historical, and theological information about the period, places, and persons in¬volved. Plus, you have the benefit of Fr. Gorman’s keen depictions of the Gospel places based on his three years’ residence there.
You can read this book straight through, or one chapter a day as spiritual reading before Mass or during Lent. Either way, you’ll come to understand better the malice of the crowds, the dismay and confusion of Christ’s friends, and the speed with which the deadly events unfolded. Most of all, you’ll come to grasp anew the depths of Christ’s love for you, awakening in you greater devotion to Him than ever before.
How about it? Wouldn’t it be good for you, by reading and meditating on the contents of this book, to spend with Jesus His last hours?
From these moving pages, you’ll come to learn scores of new – and sometimes surprising – things, including:
- The exact moment that Satan entered Judas: can you name it?
- The most terrible words Jesus spoke during his life on earth: do you know them? (Pray they will never be said about you.)
- The real meaning of the agony in the garden (Hint: it was more than suffering)
- How Jesus failed to fulfill popular hopes about the Messiah
- The dangerous political currents in Palestine that fueled the fatal events of holy week: Fr. Ralph Gorman explains them all
- That naked man who fled before Jesus and the soldiers after Jesus’s arrest. Was it really St. Mark, as some say?
- Annas, Caiaphas, Herod the Great, Herod Antipas, Pilate, the High Priests, the Sanhedrin, the Sadducees, the Scribes, and the Pharisees: learn which of these many overlapping (and often conflicting) authorities and groups ruled what . . . did what . . . and why
- Why the groups that hated Jesus did not just kill him secretly
- The many — and often shifting — charges made against Jesus
- Why Jesus refused to answer many of His accusers
- The moment that, under oath, Jesus declared himself to be God: do you know when that was?
- Pontius Pilate before and after Christ’s passion: where he came from and what happened to him afterwards
- “He burst asunder and all his bowels gushed out”: St. Luke’s little-known description of the death of Judas
- The incestuous marriage that led to the death of John the Baptist
- Pontius Pilate: why he admired — but condemned — Jesus
- What Barabbas really did, and why that led the crowd to demand Pilate release him instead of Jesus
- Why, so quickly, Palm Sunday’s “Hosannas” led to Good Friday’s “Crucify him!"
- Who Christ blamed for his plight, and to what extent
- The likely location of the crucifixion, and that spot in particular was chosen
- The statue of Venus erected over Golgotha and of Jupiter over the Holy Sepulcher: who did it and how it helped later generations of Christians
- How Roman methods deliberately increased the shame and pain of crucifixion
- How Christ great sufferings on the cross confirmed — rather than falsified — the truth of his divinity
- Why, after His death, the Sanhedrin still feared Jesus
- And much more to enrich your knowledge, understanding, and love of Jesus!