There are a couple of important questions to ask ourselves as we read the Gospel’s; who was Jesus? Where was Jesus in the story of redemption? What was wrong, and how was Jesus trying to address that?  Why did Jesus Die? These simple who, what, where, why questions make up the general questions any reader of the Gospels should ask herself/himself. One very prominent and popular answer today is that Jesus must be read in terms of Jewish nationalism and their hopes for restoration, not in individualist terms alone. Consider one expression of this below;

“It follows then, that Jesus cannot be understood if he is described exclusively, or even primarily, in the category of a spiritual master, or as one who was primarily concerned with the inner religious life and its disciplines for the individual. First and foremost, Jesus was a Jew whose vision of the proper religious life centered on the restoration of the Jewish nation and on the fulfillment of the covenants that God had made with the nation. The most important context in which modern interpreters should situate Jesus is that of ancient Jewish nationalism and Jesus’ conviction that Israel had to repent to avoid a national disaster.” (Scot McKnight, A New Vision For Israel, pg. 10)

What do you think is helpful about reading Jesus in this context? Can someone who’s identity is wrapped up in a nationalism speak to you and all the personal needs of your life?