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Publisher's Summary

The Magi of nativity scenes are romanticized as well-dressed wisemen bringing gifts to Jesus. Traditional Chrstians tell of a miraculous star that guided exotic kings from Persia, India, and Africa. Academics dismiss both accounts as no more than a pious legend.
Who is right?
In The Mystery of the Magi, Dwight Longenecker shows that all sides are wrong and the Magi were diplomats from Petra, the capital of the Nabatean kingdom of Arabia. Weaving together the history, politics, and religion of first century Palestine, Longenecker makes his case with archeological evidence, modern technology, ancient texts, and a startling new discovery by a Spanish archeo-astronomer. Longenecker's re-assessment of the Magi tradition overturns established understandings of the New Testament and revolutionizes our reading of the Bible, and the implications demand a fresh examination of the historical roots of Christianity.
©2017 Dwight Longenecker (P)2017 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Jessica McKinney on 11-18-17

Longenecker hits it out of the park!

The author takes you on a journey in the style of a detective proving his case. The details and information he pieces together, based on a story that hold a few verses in the Bible, is astounding. The narrator has a cadence that takes a minute to get used to. But before the first chapter is over, you’re thankful for his narration.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Pastor Ryan on 08-06-18

A Fascinating Deep Dive into the Story of the Magi

This is a thoughtful exploration of the Bible's tradition of the Magi who visited the young child Jesus. Longenecker begins by deconstructing the common story of the "We Three Kings" from the Christmas carol and offers instead a thesis that locates the Magi in a neighboring kingdom. His evidence is by no means definitive, but he makes a compelling circumstantial case. I read the book as part of my Advent preparation and reflection and my only complaint is that the book lacked a profound "a ha" at the end. I left with some fantastic cultural context and a viable historical proposal, but it didn't rock my world. With all that said, I enjoyed the book thoroughly.

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