This is the last book that one of the greatest theologians of the twentieth century had proposed to write as the final act of his intellectual and scientific journey, even before being elected Pope. Thus the author does not intend to speak primarily as Roman Pontiff, and the book is not intended to be an official act of his magisterium. But this apparent weakness actually reveals itself to be the strength of a book that freely wishes to interact with everyone. The passionate and scientifically rigorous analysis of the events - the Entrance into Jerusalem, the Washing of the Feet, the Last Supper, Gethsemane, and more - is marked by an ever-recurring background note: it is the question of decisive importance for the scholar and for every believer: is the Jesus in whom we believe also the Jesus who really existed? Do the Gospels show us the most historically meaningful and convincing figure of Jesus?
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