What the NT Authors Really Card AboutThere are a number of good books on the New Testament that serve as introductions by focusing on the historical background, explain interpretive issues, discuss genre, and the like. Many of these are written for graduate level students and classes. But there is a big need for under graduate textbooks that teach the basics of the New Testament.

To fill this need Kregel has published two books that survey the Old and New Testaments. The New Testament book, What the New Testament Authors Really Cared About, is now in its second edition with an updated front cover to match the popular Old Testament cover.

There are several features of these books that make them very useful for under graduate students studying the Bible:

  1. There is a one page summary section which addresses the Who?, When?, Where?, and Why? questions regarding the writing of each book. This section is typically much longer in most other intro books. The brevity helps readers grab a quick sense of these issues without being overloaded with more information than they know what to do with.
  2. Each chapter thematically summarizes each book of the NT. This is not necessarily an outline that follows the book from beginning to end but rather summarizes the main ideas of each book.
  3. Though this is a survey, there are over 100 side bars throughout the book that apply points of each book to today’s world. This aids the reader in seeing the timeless relevance of the text and the information each contributor is providing.
  4. At a Glance sections at the beginning of each book give the reader an shout outline of the whole book.
  5. Throughout each chapter there are key words that are highlighted and complied at the end of each chapter. This help to reinforce the message of each book and gives readers springs to jump from for further study.
  6. Threaded throughout the book is a theological focus on Jesus. This is done in a way that is unlike any other NT survey and many introductions. This is also a focus in the OT book.

What the New Testament Authors Really Cared About is a great survey that will serve under graduate and even upper level high school students. This book, as well as its Old Testament counterpart, cuts to the chase on the main message each biblical author is trying to convey in their writings. This is not meant to be an exhaustive survey and different settings might require the use of additional texts and classroom instruction.

I received this book for free from Kregel for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”