Pope's 'Jesus of Nazareth' Part II: 'Violence does not build up the kingdom of God'
In latest book, Pope denounces violence carried out in God's name
In his latest book, the second installment of "Jesus of Nazareth", Pope Benedict XVI soundly rejects the idea of Jesus as a political revolutionary and insists that violent uprisings must never be carried out in God's name. He also insists that Jesus never advocated violent revolution, despite what liberation theologians have suggested, saying violence was not His way no matter how valid the motivation.
"Jesus of Nazareth - Holy Week: From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection" is the second installment of Benedict's planned trilogy of books on Jesus.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Jesus of Nazareth - Holy Week: From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection" is the second installment of Benedict's planned trilogy of books on Jesus.
There have been 1.2 million copies of Part II published in seven languages, and reprints of 100,000 more are planned for the Italian editions and 50,000 in German.
In the new book, Benedict exonerates the Jews as a people for Christ's death. In the book, Benedict concludes that the Jews as a people weren't responsible for Jesus' death, but only a few Jewish leaders and their supporters, affirming that the centuries of mistrust of Christians toward Jews was deeply misplaced.
He also insists that Jesus Christ never advocated violent revolution, which has taken added relevance in the wake of popular uprisings throughout North Africa and the Middle East.
Benedict has frequently denounced religiously motivated violence against Christians in the Middle East, Pakistan and elsewhere.
"The cruel consequences of religiously motivated violence are only too evident to us all," he noted in the book.
"Violence does not build up the kingdom of God, the kingdom of humanity. On the contrary, it is a favorite instrument of the Antichrist, however idealistic its religious motivation may be," Benedict wrote. "It serves, not humanity, but inhumanity."
The publication of the series of books is being heralded as a historic milestone. Brant Pitre, a Catholic professor of scripture at Notre Dame Seminary says the book is unprecedented, given that the pope, who turns 84 next month, is fairly busy leading the 1 billion-strong Catholic Church and administering the Holy See.
"Never before in the history of the church have we had a reigning pope write a full length study of the life of Jesus," Pitre said. "Just on that level this is truly a historic publication."
Benedict said that he plans to write the third and final installment of the trilogy, on Jesus' infancy, "if I am given the strength."
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Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
Respect for Women: That all cultures may respect the rights and dignity of women.
Vocations: That many young people may accept the Lord’s invitation to consecrate their lives to proclaiming the Gospel.
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