Living in the Time of Jesus

3 x 60 minutes • Documentary Series • Produced in association with: National Geographic U.S. and Vision TV • Production year: 2010

Living in the Time of Jesus is an entertaining and engaging 3 x 1 hour limited series that transports viewers back in time to witness life during the first century. It is a “people’s history”, set in first century Judea, that looks past the iconic events of the Christian Bible, e.g. the crucifixion, and focuses on the day-to-day life of ordinary people.

Jesus is said to have overturned the tables of moneychangers in the Temple. But who were these people, and whose money were they changing? Using famous biblical stories as our guidebook, host Arne Kislenko opens a window into how people made ends meet 2,000 years ago. With the help of archaeologists, biblical experts and mules, we’ll get our hands dirty doing the jobs of ancient carpenters, shepherds and camel-riding merchants. See how the land was tilled, the taxes were collected and the Holy Temple was operated.

When you got sick in the first century, what did you do about it? It was the time of Jesus and his promise of healing miracles, but what did brain surgery look like? And, were there really any medical benefits to floating in the Dead Sea? Host Arne Kislenko investigates the many sides of ancient health care to discover what people in Jesus’ time knew—and didn’t know—about medicine. Later, we’ll try it for ourselves—watch as our team has their “bad blood” extracted by sucking leaches and gets covered in mud to treat a muscular condition.

Two thousand years ago, temple guards and soldiers arrested Jesus, setting in motion the most infamous trial of all time. Who were all these people? What laws where they charged with enforcing? And, what brought them together on this fateful night? Host Arne Kislenko moves through modern Jerusalem to pick up clues about what law and order looked like in the first century. How did everyone from the taxman to the flogger go about keeping the peace?

Writer/Director: Eric Weinthal
Host: Arne Kislenko
Producers: Simcha Jacobovici and Kathryn Liptrott
Executive Producers: Simcha Jacobovici and Ric Esther Bienstock

Award highlights:

  • Best International Documentary nomination, San Diego Christian Film Festival