The History Channel’s Jesus: His Life

This may come to a surprise to some people but I really enjoy something produced by The History Channel. No, not ancient aliens, or one of their other tabloid-esque shows. ‘Jesus: His Life’ is something they did very, very well.

As a teacher of high school-aged students, I need visuals to pair with my various lessons. ‘Jesus: His Life’ is a docudrama, so there’s acting, but unlike some Bible-related films and TV miniseries, it’s good acting. Also, since it has a documentary aspect to it, there’s talking heads that provide useful insights. In a move I applaud, they mix critical scholarship with the views of pastors, priests, bishops, and serious authors. Some of the talking heads include scholars such as Robert Cargill (U. of Iowa), Mark Goodacre (Duke U.), Shivley Smith (Boston U.), Candida Moss (U. of Birmingham), Michael Peppard (Forham U.), Nicola Denzey Lewis (Claremont Graduate School), Ben Witherington III (Ashbury Theological Seminary), Kimberly Majeski (Anderson U.); and Christina Cleveland (Duke U.); pastors, priests, and bishops such as Otis Moss III, Joel Osteen, Fr. James Martin, and Bishop Michael Curry; and authors such as Simon Sebag Montefiore.

If you’re looking for a good balance of entertainment and information, they got it right with this series which looks at Jesus through the lens of key characters from the Gospels: Joseph, Mary, Peter, Judas, Pilate, Caiaphas, Mary Magdalene, John the Baptist. Anyway, I highly recommend it.

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