The Fifth Gospel: Isaiah in the History of Christianity

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, Mar 21, 1996 - Religion - 281 pages
There is currently much interest in the history of interpretation, reader-response and the sociology of sacred texts - in what the text does as much as what it means. Isaiah, 'more evangelist than prophet' according to Jerome and others, provides an ideal case study, because of his profound influence on the language and imagery of Christianity. With illustrations from art, music, literature and the media as well as commentaries, sermons and official church pronouncements, Professor Sawyer shows how Isaiah has been used in all kinds of context, from the cult of the Virgin Mary, mediaeval passion iconography and antisemitic propaganda to Christian feminism and liberation theology. This first attempt at a comprehensive critical study of an essential part of biblical interpretation will provide a model for further research, and ensure that commentaries will never be the same again.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Isaiah and Christian origins
21
The Early Church
42
The Cult of the Virgin Mary
65
The Man of Sorrows
83
Isaiah and the Jews
100
The Reformation
126
The Evangelical Tradition
141
The Quest for the Historical Isaiah
177
Women and Isaiah
198
The Peaceable Kingdom
220
Conclusion
241
Bibliography
251
Index of Scriptural references
266
General index
275
Copyright

Isaiah in Literature and Music
158

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