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Welcome to

Giorgio Jossa

web site

Professor of History of Christianity

and History of the Ancient Church









Useful links

Giorgio Jossa (Naples, Italy, 1938) teaches History of the Ancient Church and History of Christianity at the University of Naples «Federico II», the Faculty of Theology of Southern Italy (Facoltà Teologica dell’Italia Meridionale) and the Italian Institute of Philosophical Studies (Istituto Italiano per gli Studi Filosofici).

His main areas of study are the historical figure of Jesus, his predication, the political movements in Palestine in the time of Jesus, the relationships between Jews and Christians, Flavius Josephus and the Jewish groups in the time of Jesus, the origins of Christology, and the relationships between history and Faith.


Giorgio Jossa

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Jews or Christians?

The Followers of Jesus in Search of their own Identity

(WUNT 202), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2006

The question has been asked, and the problem has therefore been considered, since the historical-critical investigation of Christian origins began. However the problem has become acute only in the last few decades, because of the occurrence of a whole series of circumstances and of reflections that have deeply changed the historiographic understanding regarding Judaism in the first century, and thus the origins of Christianity as well. Traditional opinion considered the founders of Christianity to be Jesus of Nazareth and Paul of Tarsus. Recent studies however affirm that a Christian religion as distinct from the Jewish religion can be spoken of only much later, and that for the entire first century, and for at least a part of the second century, Christianity was nothing more than a sect within Judaism. Dealing with the problem from an historical point of view, and thus considering not only Christianity of Jewish origin but also that of gentile origin, Giorgio Jossa demonstrates that the birth of a Christian identity as distinct from Jewish identity must actually be dated back to the first period of life of the community of Jesus.

Read the Review by Michael F. Bird
Published 2/16/2008
Citation: Michael F. Bird, review of Giorgio Jossa, Jews or Christians?: The Followers of Jesus in Search of their Own Identity, Review of Biblical Literature [] (2008).

Other books

Giorgio Jossa web site