The Other Jesus made me nervous. As I read the title, I anticipated a book that would rehearse how non-Christian religions understand Jesus and provide an apologetic for the true Jesus. Whereas Outcalt does a spectacular job on the first part, the second is not part of the book. Those who come to this book with a strong conviction of who Jesus is will find this book challenging and informative. Those who have no strong convictions may finish the book with deeper confusion about Jesus. Who is right? Are these various stories about Jesus simply opinions from which I must choose? The author does address my anxiety in his introduction (I read it twice). He purposely invites the reader to their own conclusions regarding Jesus and admits this invitation may be appalling to some. Outcalt has done an amazing amount of research among the writings of six religions. The book is rich with direct quotes from a diverse variety of religious writings. The chapters on Islam and Sufi are especially well researched and relevant. I learned a great deal about how Muslims see Jesus. The six perspectives of Jesus in the book include the early church, Jewish, the desert fathers, Islam, Sufi and Taoism-Buddhism. Outcalt is a historian and confined most of his research to the original writings as they explained Jesus. I found myself wondering how a more contemporary member of that religious group might interpret their writings and understand Jesus. I encourage the reader to approach this book with a strong sense of Christology and use it as a resource to help communicate with those who see Jesus differently.

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