The Dictionary of New Testament Background joins the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels, the Dictionary of Paul and His Letters and the Dictionary of the Later New Testament and Its Developments as the fourth in a landmark series of reference works on the Bible. In a time when our knowledge of the ancient Mediterranean world has grown by leaps and bounds, this volume sets out for readers the wealth of Jewish and Greco-Roman background that should inform our reading and understanding of the New Testament and early Christianity. The Dictionary of New Testament Background takes full advantage of the flourishing study of the Dead Sea Scrolls and offers individual articles focused on the most important scrolls. In addition, the Dictionary encompasses the fullness of second-temple Jewish writings, whether pseudepigraphic, rabbinic, parables, proverbs, histories or inscriptions. Articles abound on aspects of Jewish life and thought, including family, purity, liturgy and messianism. The full scope of Greco-Roman culture is displayed in articles ranging across language and rhetoric, literacy and book culture, religion and cults, honor and shame, patronage and benefactors, travel and trade, intellectual movements and ideas, and ancient geographical perspectives. No other reference work presents so much in one place for students of the New Testament. Here an entire library of scholarship is made available in summary form. The Dictionary of New Testament Background can stand alone or work in concert with one or more of its companion volumes in the series. Written by acknowledged experts in their fields, this wealth of knowledge of the New Testament era is carefully aimed at the needs of contemporary students of the New Testament. And its full bibliographies and cross-references to other volumes in the series will make it the first book to reach for in any investigation of the New Testament in its ancient setting.
This is a unique resource, with hundreds of entries from experts. I use this dictionary all the time. The whole IVP “black dictionaries” set are worth having in your personal library. DNTB is starting to age and is need of an update. IVP has begun updating the dictionaries, but don’t expect a DNTB 2.0 anytime soon.
About the Editors
Craig A. Evans (PhD, Claremont) is an internationally known and respected New Testament scholar, apologist and author who serves as the John Bisagno Distinguished Professor of Christian Origins at Houston Baptist University. He has written extensively on the historical Jesus and the Jewish background of the New Testament era. A prolific writer, Evans has published more than seventy books and over 500 journal articles and reviews, and his books have been translated into several languages. His academic and popular books include Jesus and the Jihadis, Fabricating Jesus, From Jesus to the Church: The First Christian Generation, Jesus, The Final Days: What Really Happened (co-authored with N. T. Wright), Jesus and His Contemporaries, Matthew (in the Word Biblical Commentary) and Ancient Texts for New Testament Studies. His edited volumes include Studying the Historical Jesus, Dictionary of New Testament Background and Christian Beginnings and the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Stanley E. Porter (Ph.D., University of Sheffield) is president, dean and professor of New Testament at McMaster Divinity College in Hamilton, Ontario. At McMaster he also holds the Roy A. Hope Chair in Christian Worldview. He is the author of numerous studies in the New Testament and Greek language, including The Paul of Acts: Essays in Literary Criticism, Rhetoric, and Theology; Idioms of the Greek New Testament and Verbal Aspect in the Greek of the New Testament, with Reference to Tense and Mood. He has also edited volumes such as History of Classical Rhetoric in the Hellenistic Period, 330 B.C.-A.D. 400 and Handbook to Exegesis of the New Testament.