For eighteen years as Rylands Professor of New Testament Exegesis in the University of Manchester, F. F. Bruce delivered lectures on “The Missionary Career of Paul in its Historical Setting.” This book is the fruit of those lectures. Paul’s missionary activity is portrayed against the background of historical, social and political developments in the Roman Empire of the first century, and Paul’s letters are studied within the context of his life and travels. Within this framework chapters dealing with aspects of Paul’s theology are interspersed at relevant points.
Paul: Apostle of the Free Spirit is F. F. Bruce’s classic meditation on the life and theology of Paul. Here, Bruce expounds on Paul’s teaching not systematically but rather by treating its main themes in their historical context, as Paul himself had occasion to develop them in his lectures.
The outcome is a very readable and well-ordered volume which combines a biographical sketch of Paul, an introduction to his writings and an outline of his theology in one integrated whole.
Clarity, profundity, good documentation and common sense abound… has flashes of insight or erudition on practically every page.
F. F. Bruce was born in Elgin, Scotland, and received his education at the universities of Aberdeen, Cambridge and Vienna. He was lecturer in Greek at the Universities of Edinburgh and Leeds, and then moved on to Sheffield, where he served as Professor of Biblical History and Literature. He was appointed Rylands Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis at the University of Manchester in 1959. He died in 1990.