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The Making of the New Testament: Origin, Collection, Text & Canon [Paperback]

By Arthur G. Patzia (Author)
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Item Number 134673  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   205
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.98" Width: 6.02" Height: 0.54"
Weight:   0.74 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2000
Publisher   IVP-InterVarsity Press
ISBN  0830818596  
EAN  9780830818594  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
THE MAKING OF THE NEW TESTAMENT is a textbook study of the origin, collection, copying and canonizing of the New Testament documents. Like shrewd detectives reading the subtle trace of evidence, biblical scholars have studied the trail of clues and pieced together the story of these books.

Publishers Description
What motivated the early Christians to commit teaching and events and visions to papyrus? How were the stories and sayings of Jesus circulated, handed down and shaped into Gospels? Why were four Gospels included instead of one? What do we know about ancient letter writing, secretaries and "copy shops"? Would a first-century librarian have known how to classify a Gospel, an Acts or an Apocalypse? How were Paul's letters, sent here and there, gathered into a single collection? Are there other documents that almost made it into the New Testament but didn't? The narratives and letters of our New Testament were shaped by worn pens gripped by calloused, ink-stained fingers. Their authors' ears were more likely assaulted by the urban clatter of busy intersections and bustling markets than attuned to a still small voice. Scrolls that bumped across cobbled Roman roads and pitched through rolling Mediterranean seas found their destination in stuffy, dimly lit, crowded Christian house churches in Corinth or Cenchreae. There they were read aloud and reread, handled and copied, forwarded and collected, studied and treasured. Their ordinary story is true to their extraordinary message: the mystery of the Word that became flesh. In The Making of the New Testament Arthur Patzia retells that story. His textbook study of the origin, collection, copying and canonizing of the New Testament documents answers a myriad of questions--cultural, historical, geographical, linguistic and spiritual.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Bible & Other Sacred Texts > Bible > New Testament   [2808  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > General   [10297  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > New Testament > Study   [4395  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Answers All Random Questions About the New Testament  Jan 7, 2008
I spoke to the author of this book. He wrote it after years of teaching by gathering up the FAQs from students. If you are a person who has questions about the New Testament, this is a great and accurate tool.

Good for students, pastors, and seekers of information. It is not a biased text, which makes it more trustworthy.
A Nice try at Reconciliation  Jun 26, 2007
Christian Viewpoint: Bible is infallible and innerrant. Moses wrote the first four books, that the apostles Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote the gospels, that Paul wrote all the letters attributed to him, etc. etc. Essentially Christians supports the original findings of those who actually put the book together. Interestingly enough, the actual formation of the canon is never highlighted...very few Christians know of verbal traditions in the early church, Athanasius and Arius, and about the Councils of Nicea. You will never hear about the mistranslation of "virgin" and "young women". Books like Lightfoot's "How We Got the Bible" and Bruce's "The Canon of Scripture" are good examples of this viewpoint.

Scholarly Viewpoint: The Bible is like any other book, and can be understood using the same methods that other ancient texts are understood by. Using Textual Criticism and historical evidence, they speak of "J", "E", "P", and "D". They talk about the origins of Joshua and Kings, and show how more than one author wrote Daniel. This viewpoint is fascinating and is backed up by massive amounts of evidence. Indeed, it takes much faith to ignore the scholarly work on Scripture. Friedman's "Who Wrote the Bible" is a good book on this, as is "The Unauthorized Version".

I read this book along with many others as part of a "Bible Study", and it is one of the only books from a Christian viewpoint that did not assume Biblical innerancy and infallibility, and accepted textual and historical criticism. For this reason alone I'm giving it four stars.

It's very uncommon to find a "Popular" book that tries to reconcile these points of view, so for that reason alone people should read this book. As far as I can tell, if you're looking for books full of cold hard facts you should avoid the Christian viewpoint altogether. Innerancy and infallibility require LESS evidence to be believable. By this I mean, so much historical evidence and textual criticism makes it obvious that these beliefs are incorrect; and faith is lost. Patzia obviously disagrees, and sees no problem between historical truth and Christian faith.
I thought it was pretty good.  Oct 19, 2000
Actually, I rather enjoyed the book. It didn't look as though Patzia is so concerned with making a strong position as he is with expressing a summary and the different positions on the topics he covers. The glossary looked helpful and I really appreciated the extensive end notes and annotated bibliographies included in them. I thought there was a lot of good information here for someone wanting an introduction to the issues.
OK, not great  Mar 22, 1999
This book offers some good information for considering different aspects about the new testament literature. However, I'd recommend "Fortress Introduction to the Gospels" by Mark Allan Powell as a place to start, rather than this book.

Patzia sometimes makes incredible statements of fact, which in reality are points of debate among scholars. For example, in one half sentence, Patzia declares (with no backing) that the Gospel of John was written in Ephesus in the late 1st Century. Contrast that with Powell's two page discussion of the when and where questions of that same gospel.

Basically, there is not enough discussion of the reasoning of the scholars on particular points. In one odd twist, the Patzia states that the authorship of some of Paul's letters is questioned. This includes, among others, 2 Thessalonians. A couple of pages later, though, he makes the statement that "Paul himself" gives (in 2 Thessalonians) an explanation about how to tell that the letter is authentic. Of course, if Paul didn't write 2 Thessalonians, then the explanation is bogus, a point that Patzia seems to miss.

I have to admit that I was surprised that the book didn't contain more information about the decision making process for what was considered canon. This work only gives the Council of Carthage of 397 brief treatment.

The book does contain some valuable information, but it wouldn't be my first choice. It's too bad the author (or editor) didn't spend a little extra time refining the material.


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