To understand and apply the Bible well, you need two crucial sources of information. One is the Bible itself. The other is an understanding of the cultural background of the passage you're reading.
Only with the background can you grasp the author's original concerns and purposes. This unique commentary provides, in verse-by-verse format, the crucial cultural background you need for responsible—and richer—Bible study.
Based on ten years of in-depth study, this accessible and bestselling commentary is valuable for pastors in sermon preparation, for Sunday-school and other church teachers as they build lessons, for missionaries concerned not to import their own cultural biases into the Bible, for college and seminary students in classroom assignments, and for everyday Bible readers seeking to deepen and enhance their study of Scripture.
A rich and lucid resource for understanding God's Word. This work is presented in a way that serves the needs of pastors in their sermon preparation, as well as lay members in personal Bible studies.
—Charles Blake, Presiding Bishop of Church of God in Christ
Craig S. Keener received his PhD from Duke University and is professor of New Testament at Palmer Seminary in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania.
“Jesus states that the sin is not how he gained his income but simply that he hoarded it rather than giving generously; the same emphasis appears in Proverbs.” (Luke 12:21)
“The image of a lamb among wolves was proverbial for defenselessness.” (Luke 10:3)
“Greeting no one on the way indicates the urgency of their prophetic mission representing God and not themselves” (Luke 10:4)
“Because Jewish teachers spoke of Gentile converts to Judaism as starting life anew like ‘newborn children’ (just as adopted sons under Roman law relinquished all legal status in their former family when they became part of a new one), Nicodemus should have understood that Jesus meant conversion; but it never occurs to him that someone Jewish would need to convert to the true faith of Israel.” (John 3:3–4)
“Using the jars for another purpose would temporarily defile them; Jesus shows more concern for his friend’s wedding than for contemporary ritual.” (John 2:7)
Dr. Craig S. Keener (PhD, Duke University) is professor of New Testament at Asbury Theological Seminary, and is the author of 17 books, four of which have won book awards in Christianity Today. One, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament, has sold more than half a million copies. He has authored scholarly commentaries on Matthew, John (two volumes), Acts (four volumes), and more briefly on Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, and Revelation. Dr. Keener is married to Dr. Médine Moussounga Keener, who spent 18 months as a refugee in her nation of Congo before their marriage.