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New Testament History: A Narrative Account
Ben Witherington III
From The Publisher:
Essential to an understanding of the New Testament world is a comprehension of the individuals, events, and social movements that shaped the world from which Jesus and his followers emerged. Unfortunately, the accounts of Josephus and other early historians are complex and often leave students feeling overwhelmed and confused. New Testament History provides a worthy solution to this problem. A well-known expert on the social world of the New Testament, Ben Witherington offers an engaging look into the world that birthed the Christian faith.
In this succinct yet readable narrative, Witherington carries the reader from the intertestamental Maccabean wars to the reign of Domitian and the exile of John, focusing especially upon the life of Christ. Witherington closely explores the geographical, political, social, and religious influences that shaped the leaders and social movements of the day. The inferiority complex of Alexander the Great and the stories of "Little Boots" and Nero are a few examples of such case studies.
This rich chronicle leaves readers with a better understanding of the social and political climate of the New Testament world, tackling controversies and issues with depth and clarity. Students, pastors, and interested readers will enjoy this stimulating account and appreciate its readable narrative style. New Testament History contains a number of pedagogical features, including illustrations, sidebars, "Closer Look" sections, maps, and charts.
This is a very readable and informative survey of the rise of Christianity against its historical background. I can think of no higher praise than to say that this book may well do for this generation what F. F. Bruce's New Testament History did for an earlier one.
I. Howard Marshall, University of Aberdeen
A well written and informative overview not only for theologians and specialists but also for every educated and interested reader. It gives a fine introduction to the time of Jesus and the apostles and includes several new historical and archeological insights. The numerous illustrations are also valuable.
Martin Hengel, University of Tόbingen
Ben Witherington's New Testament History fills a significant gap in biblical background textbooks. This well-written book, with its choice photographs, maps, and sidebars, will engage and enlighten students painlessly! I recommend it enthusiastically.
Craig A. Evans, Trinity Western University
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About the Author
Ben Witherington III (Ph.D., University of Durham) is professor of New Testament at Asbury Theological Seminary. He is the author of over twenty books, including The Jesus Quest: The Third Search for the Jew of Nazareth.
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