Widely used as a textbook since its publication in 1987, this work provides an analytical and systematic introduction to the Roman, Greek and Jewish political, social, literary, and religious backgrounds necessary for a historical understanding of the New Testament in the early church. New to this expanded third edition are substantial revisions of Everett Ferguson's original material, an updated bibliography, and fresh discussions of social life in the first-century, of Gnosticism, and of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other Jewish literature.
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