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An Introduction to the New Testament: Contexts, Methods and Ministry Formation
Inter-varsity Press / 2004 / Hardcover
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This introduction gives particular attention to the social, cultural and rhetorical contexts of the New Testament authors and their writings. It also integrates instruction in exegetical and interpretive strategies with their customary considerations of authorship, dating, audience and message. This introduction introduces students to a relevant facet of interpretation with each portion of New Testament literature. It features maps, photos, points of interest, aids to learning as well as separate chapters that explore the historical and cultural environment of the New Testament era, the nature of the Gospels and the quest for the historical Jesus, and the life of Paul.
An Introduction to the New Testament is mindful of the needs of students preparing for ministry so it is explicit in displaying that the New Testament itself, in its parts and as a whole, is a pastoral response. Each chapter on the New Testament literature closes with a discussion of the implications for ministry formation.
A 2005 Gold Medallion finalist! Some introductions to the New Testament highlight the historical contexts in which the New Testament literature was written. This introduction gives particular attention to the social, cultural and rhetorical contexts of the New Testament authors and their writings. Few introductions to the New Testament integrate instruction in exegetical and interpretive strategies with their customary considerations of authorship, dating, audience and message. This introduction capitalizes on the opportunities, introducing students to a relevant facet of interpretation with each portion of New Testament literature. Rarely do introductions to the New Testament approach their task mindful of the needs of students preparing for ministry. This introduction is explicit in doing so, assuming as it does that the New Testament itself--in its parts and as a whole--is a pastoral response. Each chapter on the New Testament literature closes with a discussion of the implications for ministry formation. These integrative features alone would distinguish this introduction from others. But in addition, its pages brim with maps, photos, points of interest and aids to learning. Separate chapters explore the historical and cultural environment of the New Testament era, the nature of the Gospels and the quest for the historical Jesus, and the life of Paul. This introduction by David A. deSilva sets a new standard for its genre and is bound to appeal to many who believe that the New Testament should be introduced as if both scholarship and ministry mattered.
David A. deSilva (Ph.D., Emory University) is Trustees' Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ashland, Ohio. He is the author of over fifteen books including (Septuagint Commentary Series); and He is also an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church.
"This excellent introduction meets a special need, especially for seminarians concerned about how their academic study of the New Testament relates to ministry. David deSilva is conversant with a wide range of scholarship for the entire New Testament canon, its historical setting, and both traditional and more current approaches to the text (including rhetorical, literary and social approaches). His concern for ministry application is a valuable and unique feature, and his extensive proficiency in the ancient sources, already demonstrated in his earlier works, makes him an especially trustworthy guide in this area."
"If the textbooks available are not adequate, write one that is! This is precisely what David deSilva has done in his new interdisciplinary introduction to the New Testament--to the benefit of his students, and likewise for all who aspire to apply New Testament content to the ministry needs of the world today. . . . This book is highly recommended, and Professor deSilva is to be thanked for welcoming the rest of us into his classroom!"
"David deSilva provides us with a reliable, thorough and eminently useful introduction to the New Testament that allows students to experience the spiritual and historical significance of these writings for communities of faith. . . . His writing is remarkably clear and interesting, covering material of such significance that many students will find here a textbook that they will want to keep, one to which they will return repeatedly long after the course is over."
"This compendious handbook to the New Testament writings will prove an invaluable resource in the classroom and study. The approach is lively and topical, with a special section devoted to the application of scholarship to ministry--a feature not often found in quality books like this. . . . In all, here is a volume that carves for itself a distinctive place in what is an overcrowded market, and will be welcomed by hard-pressed students and alert pastors alike. Well done!"
"This introduction helpfully and without apology attends to both the intellectual and spiritual formation of the reader. . . . I am happy to commend this introduction to a whole range of readers--students, pastors and educated laypersons."
"David deSilva has written the New Testament introduction that I have wanted to use (and wish I had written). It is not only readable and comprehensive, but it also incorporates the latest in scholarly approaches to the New Testament. In this work we really do discover the New Testament in its historical, rhetorical and social context. Furthermore, it reads the New Testament as a pastoral and practical work. What more could one ask for? What more could one offer to students? I am indeed excited about this work."
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