In this clear and accessible introductory text, the author supplies the reader with basic information about both the content and the historical background of the New Testament and shows the processes by which scholars seek to solve some of the chief literary problems of the Gospels. He offers a straightforward path through the unwieldy abundance of complex material, without distortion or over-simplification. He avoids technical discussions and critical debates, but shows the main problems to be considered in this type of study.
The author does not emphasise novel theories, but presents a balanced account that represents the consensus of current New Testament scholarship.
Long seen as one of the leading volumes of its kind, this enlarged and revised edition will provide lasting knowledge to all who seek a deepened understanding of the forces that forged the New Testament.
Part One: The Background of the New Teastament Period
1. The Political and Social Background of Palestinian Judaism
2. The Cultural and Religious Background of Palestinian Judaism
3. The Philosophical and Religious Background of Greco-Roman Paganism
Part Two: Aspects of the Life and Teaching of Jesus Christ
4. The Sources for Our Knowledge of the Life and Teaching of Jesus Christ
5. A Summary of the Life of Jesus Christ
6. Aspects of the Teaching of Jesus Christ
Part Three: The Apostolic Age
7. The Sources and the Chronology of the Apostolic Age
8. Primitive Jewish Christianity
9. The Expansion of Christianity Through the Work of the Apostle Paul
10. Paul’s Letters to Churches and Individuals
11. General Letters and the Book of Revelation
Appendix I: The Formation of the Canon of the New Testament
Appendix II: The Transmission and Translation of the Bible
Index of Principal New Testament References