This work explores the world of New Testament scholarship, seeking to find a reasonable place between conflicting scholarly debates. This is a valuable text for anyone who wants an introduction to New Testament scholarship or those who are seeking answers to difficult questions raised by critical scholars. Hengel acknowledges the difficulty of reconstructing the apostolic world and makes a case for the New Testament as a testimony of the fulfillment of Old Testament promises.
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Hengel...here marshals a vast body of learning to illuminate brilliantly a few specific questions about the New Testament.... For anyone who has read much in contemporary European New Testament scholarship, this wise little book will come as a tonic. And for the beginning adult student of the New Testament, the book will serve as an excellent introduction to the question of historicity in early Christian writings.
—Review for Religious
The book is extremely well written and gives evidence of an astonishing command of ancient literature.
—Journal of the American Academy of Religion
Martin Hengel (1926–2009) was emeritus professor of New Testament and early Judaism at the University of Tübingen. He specialized in early Christianity and the origins of Christianity. Hengel began studying theology in 1947 in Tübingen before moving to the University of Heidelberg in 1949. He eventually earned his Ph.D. in 1959 from the University of Tübingen. Hengel’s works include Studies in Early Christology, Crucifixion: In the Ancient World and the Folly of the Message of the Cross, and The Septuagint as Christian Scripture: Its Prehistory and the Problem of its Canon.