In this book, through a distinctive evangelical and critical approach, Michael Bird explores the historical development of the four canonical Gospels. He shows how the memories and faith of the earliest believers formed the Gospel accounts of Jesus that got written and, in turn, how these accounts further shaped the early church.
Bird’s study clarifies the often confusing debates over the origins of the canonical Gospels. Bird navigates recent concerns and research as he builds an informed case for how the early Christ followers wrote and spread the story of Jesus—the story by which they believed they were called to live. The Gospel of the Lord is ideal for students or anyone who wants to know the story behind the four Gospels.
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Studying the Gospels is daunting for the beginner and difficult even for the seasoned scholar. Mike Bird here slices a path through the tangled mess of older hypotheses and offers clear guidelines for the way forward. . . . Everyone will profit enormously from wrestling with the issues presented here in a fresh and compelling manner.
—N.T. Wright, professor of New Testament and early Christianity, St. Andrews University
Carefully researched and engagingly written. . . . Michael Bird asks all the right questions about the New Testament Gospels—what they really are, why they even exist, why these four Gospels and not others—and then provides very sensible answers. Bird shows that the Evangelists tell the stories of Jesus’ life, teaching, and deeds because Christian faith ultimately is about following Jesus. Scholars and students alike will find new and refreshing ideas in this instructive book.
—Craig A. Evans, Payzant Distinguished Professor of New Testament, Acadia Divinity College
In The Gospel of the Lord Michael Bird treats with acute perception not only the ways in which the early church wrote the story of Jesus but also the ways in which modern scholars have reconstructed those earlier ways. The treatment is wide-ranging, thoroughly documented, evangelical, and eminently fair in its presentation of opposing points of view. Ideal as a required textbook for seminarians and as a compendium for all others engaged in the academic study of Jesus’ life!
—Robert H. Gundry, scholar-in-residence, Westmont College
Well-researched and well-written, this book is a delightful read from beginning to end. It contains both a state-of-the-art discussion of many complex Gospel issues and several creative suggestions for new ways forward. A great resource for studying the Gospels.
—Jonathan T. Pennington, director of research doctoral studies, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
Michael F. Bird is lecturer in theology at Ridley Melbourne Mission and Ministry College in Australia. His previous books include Evangelical Theology: A Biblical and Systematic Introduction, Jesus Is the Christ: The Messianic Testimony of the Gospels, and Are You the One Who Is to Come? The Historical Jesus and the Messianic Question.