The New Testament in Its World

An Introduction to the History, Literature, and Theology of the First Christians

by N. T. Wright, Michael F. Bird

On Sale: 2019-11-19

Book Summary

The New Testament in Its World by bestselling author N. T. Wright and Michael F. Bird is designed to open readers' eyes to the larger world of the New Testament. Guiding you in how to think like a first-century Christian, it stands to become the definitive introduction on the topic.

About the Book

Your ticket from the twenty-first century to the era of Jesus and the first Christians. A readable, one-volume introduction placing the entire New Testament and early Christianity in its original context, written by distinguished scholar and author N. T. Wright.

An ideal guide for students, The New Testament in Its World addresses the many difficult questions faced by those studying early Christianity, including:

  • What was the first century understanding of the Kingdom of God?
  • What is the meaning of the resurrection in its original context?
  • What were the Gospels, and how did they come about?
  • Who was Paul and why are his letters so controversial?

Written for both classroom and personal use, this book brings together decades of ground-breaking research, writing, and teaching into one volume. It presents the New Testament books—along with their subjects: Jesus and the early church—within the historical and social context of Second Temple Judaism and Greco-Roman politics and culture.

The New Testament in Its World allows you to recover the excitement of what it was like to live as Christians in the first or second centuries.

Features include:

  • Surveys of each New Testament book that discuss their significance and provides commentary on their contents, along with implications for the Christian life.
  • Major sections on the historical Jesus, the resurrection of Jesus, and Paul's chronology and theology.
  • Up-to-date discussions of textual criticism and the canonization of the New Testament.
  • Frequent illustrations, maps, charts, diagrams, and artwork provide additional explanations and insights.
  • A distillation of the life work of N. T. Wright on the New Testament with input from Michael Bird.

Also available are Video and Workbook companion resources (sold separately) to enhance learning and experience the world of the New Testament.

Reviews

Two of today's most prolific evangelical New Testament scholars have now combined their expertise to produce an amazing volume: part introduction and survey, part 'cliff notes' on Wright's four volumes to date in his Christian Origins and the Question of God series, part a sneak preview of what he might say in his remaining two volumes, and part showcase for Bird's always sensible judgments, often nicely alliterated prose, and now and then particularly funny humor. Special features include the book's lavish illustrations, sidebars quoting choice ancient primary sources and hilarious 'emails from the edge' from a confused student to his patient professor who always replies wisely. Overall, the genre, like the quality, is one of a kind.

For all who have been anticipating a comprehensive and coherent reading of the entire New Testament from N. T. Wright, the wait is over. Wright and Bird offer their vision for the New Testament, with a lovely interplay of interpretative insights from the world behind the text, the world of the text, and the world in front of the text. Both look and content are energizing and engaging. This magisterial work provides an ideal textbook for courses on the New Testament.

Masterful job by Wright and Bird, written with characteristic jauntiness and scholarly rigor. The numerous sidebars add spice to the substantial meal presented in the text. The book's power lies in its thorough historical study combined with its missional voice to the church today.

This is a distillation of Wright's quarter-century, multi-volume project exploring Christian Origins and the Question of God. Choice nuggets of Wright's most important discussions have been selected and blended with new material by both authors, enhanced with visuals, teaching aids, and online resources. If you want to introduce time-starved seminary students to the New Testament through the eyes of N. T. Wright but can't assign thousands of pages of reading, this is the book you need.

Those beginning to study the New Testament for the first time can easily become overwhelmed by the sheer volume of what they need to know before they begin. This splendidly clear but wide-ranging introduction is a brilliant way in to serious study of the New Testament and will, deservedly, become the go-to textbook for a large number of readers.

Professors Wright and Bird have essentially given students and scholars alike two books in one: a detailed introduction to the major historical and theological topics of New Testament study, and a primer on each of the New Testament's writings. Their world-class scholarship (wonderfully peppered with images, excerpts from ancient and modern writings, and more) rightly recognizes that the New Testament's aim was--and is--to promote worship, discipleship, and mission.

Wright has proven himself a discipline-shaping scholar, Bird a master textbook writer. When you put their minds and skills together, you get an excellent introduction to the New Testament: witty, accurate, accessible, eye-catching. This is a must-have resource for students.

This is the New Testament introduction of all New Testament introductions! Not only is this a superb New Testament introduction from the keyboards of two of today's most prolific and balanced New Testament scholars, but more advanced students will find here an accessible and mature synthesis of and primer for N. T. Wright's voluminous work.

Wright and Bird have done a great service to the church and the academy with this volume. They introduce readers to the major historical, literary, and theological themes of the New Testament in a way that is highly readable, yet they do not shy away from the difficult questions. They manage to avoid the twin dangers of excessive skepticism and uncritical pietism. It is the epitome of faith seeking understanding, and it will find a welcome home in many colleges and seminary classrooms as well pastors' libraries.

N.T. (Tom) Wright can't write anything that is not interesting and suggestive and even at times provocative. His shelf or two of books is now condensed, reworked, and put in digestible form for even more readers. This is a lifetime of scholarship and a landmark publication by one of the world's leading New Testament scholars. I'm grateful too for the creative contribution Mike Bird makes in pulling all of this into one final heap of fun.

The big, bold theological interpretation of the New Testament that N. T. Wright has been building, piece by piece, in monographs and commentaries over the years now appears here in an accessible, single-volume New Testament introduction.

Tom Wright and Mike Bird give us the opportunity to appreciate the breadth and detail of Wright's vision of the New Testament--one of the most far-reaching of recent times. The format of a New Testament introduction means that we also get to fill in the gaps on New Testament books that have not featured extensively in Wright's major books. We also get to find the answers to many 'So, what would he say about . . . ?' questions. This book will be highly valued by students, scholars, and churches.

With inimitable verve and piquancy, two of this generation's scholarly juggernauts give us a New Testament introduction that unapologetically sets up shop at the all-too- untraveled crossroads of history and theology.

From beginning to end, Tom Wright and Mike Bird relentlessly orient the study of the New Testament to questions of faith, transformation, worship, and mission. Not only does the book assemble Tom's massive scholarship in one volume, but also integrates it with the concern of his ministry as Bishop of Durham, to serve the church. If you are invested in the development of theological students, pastors, and congregations, you should get this book. In fact, no matter what your view, you will find much to benefit you, from discussions of primary texts to practical examples.

Interpreting the New Testament is a complex task and Wright and Bird work at it with customary passion and a commitment to clarity and coherence. These qualities make it an ideal starting-point for anyone who wants to understand early Christianity and its canonical texts.

Product Details

  • Imprint: Zondervan Academic
  • On Sale: 2019-11-19
  • Pages: 992
  • Publisher: Zondervan Academic
  • Publication Date: 2019-11-19
  • Trim Size: 162.000mm x 241.000mm x 63.000mm
  • Weight: 2.000gr
  • Category 1 : RELIGION / Biblical Studies / New Testament
  • Category 2 : RELIGION / Biblical Studies / Paul's Letters
  • Category 3 : HISTORY / Ancient / Greece
  • Category 4 : RELIGION / Biblical Criticism & Interpretation / New Testament
  • Category 5 : RELIGION / Biblical Studies / History & Culture
  • Category 6 : RELIGION / Biblical Studies / Jesus, the Gospels & Acts
  • Category 7 : RELIGION / Christian Theology / History