History matters to an historical religion like Christianity, and so I’ve spent a lot of time on the history in and about the NT. My survey of the history of the whole period is New Testament History . This book has been used as a textbook a good deal and should be read in tandem with my Acts of the Apostles commentary. It should also be read in tandem with the collection of essays that I edited and contributed to entitled History, Literature, and the Book of Acts. There are some excellent essays in this volume by Bill Arnold, Richard Bauckham, Joel Green and others.
Another book of direct relevance to the study of the history of the period is my little textbook entitled New Testament Rhetoric. It explains the art of persuasion and how that affected the history of earliest Christianity and its documents. The book should be read in tandem with my socio-rhetorical commentaries done for Eerdmans and InterVarsity.
A series of essays on key words and phrases in the NT, on the history of earliest Christianity supplements the above mentioned works and is entitled What’s in the Word. It includes important essays on how the canon developed.