From Jesus to His First Followers examines to what extent early Christian groups were in continuity or discontinuity with respect to Jesus. Adriana Destro and Mauro Pesce concentrate on the transformation of religious practices. Their anthropological-historical analysis focuses on the relations between discipleship and households, on the models of contact with the supernatural world, and on cohabitation among distinct religious groups. The book highlights how Matthew uses non-Jewish instruments of legitimation, John reformulates religious experiences through symbolized domestic slavery, Paul adopts a religious practice diffused in Roman-Hellenistic environments. The book reconstructs the map of early Christian groups in the Land of Israel and explains their divergences on the basis of an original theory of the local origin of Gospels’ information.
“God is not at the disposal of a seeing that is outside of God, for there is no outside of God. Thus, seeing God cannot be objective. Any seeing of God that would be interested only in the seeing would not be a seeing of God; for a seeing of God that did not see God’s significance, and specifically God’s significance for me as the one doing the seeing, would not be a seeing of God, who cannot be seen at all except as the one who demands and judges, gives and shows mercy, precisely in relation to me” (Bultmann)