Books on the Bible: New Testament

There are a number of challenges to biblical authority and accuracy that continue to float about on the internet and elsewhere. One of them regards the New Testament canon. This new volume by Michael Kruger goes a long way toward clarifying what the canon is, how it came about, what the challengers are asserting, and very helpful assessments of the challenges. I’m only part way into the volume and am increasingly impressed by it. It is a scholarly volume with very ample footnotes. The text itself is eminently readable and the arguments are commendable. If this is an area of interest for you, then you should invest in a copy sooner than later.

Canon Revisited: Establishing the Origins and Authority of the New Testament Books

Price: $24.62

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Kruger co-authored another volume with Andreas Köstenberger on the issue of diversity in the Early Church and Bart Ehrman’s thesis regarding early “Christianities.” This too is a healthy contribution to the discussion.

I have more recommendations that I’ll post soon. Enjoy!

History and the Miraculous

This morning I awoke to yet another installment from one of the Biblical studies discussion groups to which I subscribe. Seldom do I have the time or interest to following the discussions these days. But around Easter time people tend to submit thoughts or items that for many reasons interest me. This morning I was directed to an essay by Dr. John Dickson, the director of the Centre for Public Christianity and an honorary associate of the Department of Ancient History at Macquarie University. In his essay, “Facts and friction of Easter,” Dickson writes of the extremes his finds between skeptics, accommodationists and apologists when it comes to the resurrection of Jesus. Much of what he writes is fair enough. But here’s an excerpt that contains some thoughts that I believe are vulnerable and worth pondering.


The Historical Reliability of the Gospels, Craig Blomberg

I was granted faith in Jesus Christ in late-1987, at the ripe old age of twenty. I was attending Utah State University at the time, majoring in Music. After coming to faith, my interests migrated and I changed my major to Philosophy. Several philosophy courses contained segments critical of the Bible, especially of the New Testament. One term I enrolled in the course, “The History and Thought of the New Testament” — which was neither. The lecturer was a deviant Presbyterian minister who’s education was a bit out of date. He tried hard to dissuade students of any confidence in the New Testament gospels.

Blomberg on Reliability of the GospelsWhat he didn’t know, at least at first, was that I had become acquainted with Dr. Craig L. Blomberg, now Distinguished Professor of New Testament at Denver Seminary. Not only that, I had acquired a copy of Craig’s book, The Historical Reliability of the Gospels (first edition). These were the days before email and low-priced long distance phone calls. Nevertheless, I began speaking with Craig about numerous issues. He was eminently helpful and always available. I read his book (or portions thereof) so many times that I eventually had to replace it. Then I had to replace it again. Now I’m very pleased to note that a second edition has been published. I highly recommend this book: The Historical Reliability of the Gospels. (If you buy a copy from Amazon, make sure it is the second edition!)

Later I was to make my way to Colorado, begin working with Summit Ministries, and eventually pursue an M.A. I took many courses on many subjects at different schools. I only took two courses with Craig, however. He is highly sought after at Denver Seminary. What I did enjoy, however, were our regular conversations and correspondence. I also enjoyed a fantastic independent study with Craig, one in which I first floated my peculiar reading of Romans 1:18ff. (No, Craig was not persuaded by my thesis, though he felt there was enough traction for it to be pursued. I’m pursuing it!)

Craig is an inspiration to younger wanna-be evangelical scholars. I cannot thank you enough, Craig!

Prof. Morna D. Hooker on 2 Corinthians 5:21

On 3 May 2007 I was treated to a wonderful evening devoted to  honoring Professor C.K. Barrett’s on his 90th birthday. The reception was a treat; we browsed among and chatted with a number of great New Testament scholars, as well as a host of energetic and very promising postgraduate students.

A highlight of the evening was the keynote paper by Professor Morna D. Hooker. Her text was 2 Corinthians 5:21. The title of her paper was, “On Being the Righteousness of God.” With her express permission, the audio of her lecture is available to download HERE. (The file is unedited, so there may be some popping or silent spots, etc.) Following her presentation you will hear interactions from such scholars as C.K. Barrett, Walter Moberly, N.T. Wright, James Dunn, and John Barclay.