BA Books & Authors on the Web – April 10, 2015

Cover ArtKevin Brown, at Diglotting, reviewed Galatians and Christian Theology, edited by N. T. Wright, Mark Elliott, Scott Hafemann, and John Frederick.

Whether you are involved in biblical studies or theological studies, this volume will surely have something you can enjoy. It is a fantastic read for anyone interested in current issues swirling about regarding Galatians.

RBL featured two reviews of Acts of the Apostles by William Kurz, one from Thomas Phillips and the other from Troy Troftgruben.

At The Budding Exegete, Kenneth Litwak reviewed Donald Hagner’s The New Testament (part 1, part 2).

Andrew Spencer, at Ethics and Culture, reviewed Matthew Levering’s Engaging the Doctrine of Revelation.

At Pursuing Veritas, Jacob J. Prahlow reviewed Encountering the New Testament by Walter Elwell and Robert Yarbrough.

Sherif Gendy, at Arabish Biblical Theology, reviewed Adam, the Fall, and Original Sin, edited by Hans Madueme and Michael Reeves.

Brandon Ambrosino quoted from John Caputo’s What Would Jesus Deconstruct? in the Boston Globe article Jesus’ Radical Politics.

BA Books & Authors on the Web – September 12, 2014

Cover ArtFaith & Leadership featured Take it from Bonhoeffer — there is no ‘Christian youth’, from Andrew Root’s forthcoming Bonhoeffer as Youth Worker.

“To label the young ‘Christian youth,’ Bonhoeffer believes, is to make faith bound not in their humanity and the eschatological work of Christ, not in the wrestling of their being, but in this episodic time of ‘special privilege’ created by culture. Faith becomes a fashion, a particular, distinct period during which you are loyal to something before moving on to something else.

Your ‘Christian-ness’ is bound in your ‘youthfulness.’ Once youthfulness fades with age or new lifestyle commitments, so too can ‘Christian.’ ‘Christian’ was an adjective you used to describe your high school days. As you outgrow the privileged space (especially the youth group), as you outgrow your youth, you outgrow ‘Christian.’”

Also, I Read Too Much shared a pre-release review of Bonhoeffer as Youth Worker.

Jarvis Williams reviewed Douglas Moo’s Galatians BECNT volume for Books at a Glance.

Dennis Hamm, S.J, author of the Philippians, Colossians, Philemon volume in the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture (CCSS), was interviewed by the Center for Catholic Thought.

Daniel Keating’s CCSS volume on First and Second Peter, Jude was reviewed at RBL by Abson Joseph.

Antonius, at Stages of Prayer, reviewed the Acts of the Apostles volume of the CCSS, by William Kurz, SJ.

Adam Kurihara reflected on the mall and Apple in light of James K. A. Smith’s Desiring the Kingdom.

Nick Nowalk, at The Strange Triumph of the Lamb, shared a quote on holiness and mission from The Drama of Scripture, by Craig Bartholomew and Michael Goheen.

At The Gospel Coalition, Gavin Ortlund interviewed Bryan Chapell, author of Christ-Centered Preaching.

Chris Woznicki, at Think Out Loud, is looking forward to forthcoming Baker Academic titles from Michael Allen and Scott Swain, Matthew Levering, Simon Gathercole, and Christopher Seitz.

The Sober Intoxication of the Spirit – an Excerpt from Acts of the Apostles

Cover ArtThe following is an excerpt from Acts of the Apostles, by William S. Kurz, SJ, in the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture.


The ironic accusation that the disciples at Pentecost are “filled with new wine” (Acts 2:13) was a favorite theme for the Fathers of the Church. St. Cyril of Jerusalem explained to a group of catechumens,

“They are not drunk in the way you might think. They are indeed drunk, but with the sober intoxication which kills sin and gives life to the heart and which is the opposite of physical drunkenness. Drunkenness makes a person forget what he knows; this kind, instead, brings understanding of things that were not formerly known. They are drunk insofar as they have drunk the wine of that mystical vine which affirms, ‘I am the vine, you are the branches.’” (John 15:5).

St. Ambrose exclaimed in a hymn, “Let us drink with joy the sober intoxication of the Spirit!” and said to the newly baptized, “He who becomes intoxicated with wine staggers, but he who becomes intoxicated with the Holy Spirit is rooted in Christ. How truly excellent is this intoxication which produces the sobriety of the soul!”

St. Augustine, preaching to the newly baptized at Easter, said,

“The Holy Spirit has come to abide in you; do not make him withdraw; do not exclude him from your heart in any way. He is a good guest; he found you empty and he filled you; he found you hungry and he satisfied you; he found you thirsty and he has intoxicated you. May he truly intoxicate you! The Apostle said, ‘Do not be drunk with wine which leads to debauchery.’ Then, as if to clarify what we should be intoxicated with, he adds, ‘But be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart’ (Eph 5:18–19). Doesn’t a person who rejoices in the Lord and sings to him exuberantly seem like a person who is drunk? I like this kind of intoxication. The Spirit of God is both drink and light.”

For these patristic writers, it is evident that the new wine of the Holy Spirit outpoured at Pentecost continues to be given in the Church, especially through the sacraments of baptism and confirmation.

©2014 by William S. Kurz, SJ. Published by Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.

For more information on Acts of the Apostles, click here.

New in the CCSS: Acts of the Apostles

Cover ArtIn this addition to the Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture, William Kurz offers a close reading and explanation of the entire narrative of Acts, grounded in the original Greek but keyed to the NABRE for liturgical use.

This volume, like each in the series, relates Scripture to life, is faithfully Catholic, and is supplemented by features designed to help readers understand the Bible more deeply and use it more effectively.


“William Kurz, an accomplished biblical scholar, has a written a commentary on Acts that is up to date on current critical scholarship yet accessible to a wide audience of readers. Throughout the commentary one can see Kurz’s clear understanding of the relationship of Acts to the first volume by the same author, the Gospel of Luke. Kurz is always positive in dealing with problem areas of the text. This work will be especially valuable for study groups, college students, and preachers of the Word.” – Terence J. Keegan, OP, Providence College

“In this volume, Kurz provides students and pastors a rare combination of careful scholarship and pastoral insight. Kurz writes as a seasoned Lukan scholar–a pioneer in narrative criticism–and implores the Church to extend Luke’s vision concerning ‘all that Jesus began to do and teach . . . to the ends of the earth.'” – Martin Mittelstadt, Evangel University

“Kurz sees the Acts narrative not just as a coherent story about the past–our Church’s earliest moments of evangelistic mission–but also as a mirror the contemporary Church may peer into to see its deepest identity manifested within the stories of the major figures led by God to advance the Church’s mission to the ‘ends of the earth.’ It is a great service to provide a commentary that is technically pristine, theologically alert, and pastorally sensitive.” – Stephen Miletic, Franciscan University of Steubenville

“In this book, Kurz provides necessary historical and cultural background while reading the text within the Church’s tradition. He writes with the mind of a scholar and the heart of a pastor, all in an accessible style.” – Martin C. Albl, Presentation College

“William Kurz combines the best of contemporary scholarship with the riches of tradition. His commentary is the fruit of a lifetime of work on Luke-Acts.” – Jeremy Holmes, Wyoming Catholic College


William S. Kurz, SJ (PhD, Yale University), is professor of New Testament at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he has taught for more than thirty-five years. He is the author of numerous books, including Reading Luke-Acts: Dynamics of Biblical Narrative.

For more information on Acts of the Apostles, click here.