Paul is second only to Jesus as the most important person in the birth of Christianity, and yet he continues to be controversial, even among Christians. How could the letters of Paul be used both to inspire radical grace and to endorse systems of oppression, condoning slavery, subordinating women, and condemning homosexual behavior? Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan explain the reasons for Paul's mixed reputation and reveal to us what scholars have known for decades: that the later letters of Paul were created by the early church to dilute Paul's egalitarian message and transform him into something more "acceptable."
"A refreshing and heartening exculpation of a still routinely maligned figure of the first importance to culture and civilization."—Booklist (starred review)