BA Books & Authors on the Web – February 20, 2015

Cover ArtIntroducing Evangelical Ecotheology, by Daniel Brunner, Jennifer Butler, and A. J. Swoboda, was reviewed on Odd Is The New Normal.

What this book does, in its amazing depth of research, is gather together thousands of years of theology and tradition into a single place…You can tell that this book was coauthored by teachers (good teachers) in their ability to organize and present such complicated material in a manner that is approachable and enlightening.

Bob on Books reviewed Engaging the Doctrine of Revelation by Matthew Levering.

Todd Johnson and Cindy Wu, co-authors of Our Global Families, wrote a guest post for A. J. Jacobs’ Global Family Reunion.

At Transpositions, Brett Speakman reviewed Jonathan Wilson’s God’s Good World.

Jordan Hillebert, at Reformation 21, reviewed Atonement, Law and Justice by Adonis Vidu.

At Pursuing Veritas, Jacob Prahlow reviewed Thomas O’Loughlin’s The Didache.

Asbury Journal reviewed The Story of Jesus in History and Faith by Lee Martin McDonald, Understanding Christian Mission by Scott Sunquist, Christian Philosophy by Craig Bartholomew and Michael Goheen, Simon Peter in Scripture and Memory by Markus Bockmuehl, and The End of Apologetics by Myron Penner.

At Solidarity Hall, John Medaille wrote Pop Culture and Total War, a reflection on Daniel Bell’s The Economy of Desire.

Andrew Root, author of Bonhoeffer as Youth Worker, was interviewed on Dr. Bill Maier Live.


BA Books & Authors on the Web – January 24, 2014

Cover ArtJonathan Pennington, author of Reading the Gospels Wisely, was interviewed by Matthew Montonini at New Testament Perspectives.

James K.A. Smith wrote a response to the recent critique of Imagining the Kingdom published in Books & Culture.

Byron Borger of Hearts & Minds Books included Imagining the Kingdom by James K. A. Smith,  God’s Good World by Jonathan R. Wilson, and Why Study History? by John Fea in his Hearts & Minds Best Books of 2013 – Part One.

Hearts & Minds Best Books of 2013 – Part Two included Journey toward Justice by Nicholas Wolterstorff, Teenagers Matter by Mark Cannister, and Spiritual Formation in Emerging Adulthood by David Setran and Chris Kiesling.

At RBL, Teresa Okure reviewed The Christ of the Miracle Stories by Wendy Cotter.

Jackson Watts, of the Helwys Society Forum, reviewed Christian Philosophy by Craig Bartholomew and Michael Goheen.

John Walker reviewed Thomas Guarino’s Vincent of Lérins and the Development of Christian Doctrine, at Freedom in Orthodoxy.

At Unsettled Christianity, Joel Watts reviewed Lee McDonald’s The Story of Jesus in History and Faith.

John Cook and Robert Holmstedt’s Beginning Biblical Hebrew was reviewed by Brian LePort, at Near Emmaus.

Scott Klingsmith reviewed James Ware’s Paul and the Mission of the Church for the Denver Seminary blog.

Nijay K. Gupta’s post New Testament Scholarship: 50 Books Everyone Should Read (Part 1: Gospels), included Miracles by Craig Keener.

Postliberal Theology and the Church Catholic, edited by John Wright, and Another Reformation by Peter Ochs, were reviewed by Joseph Mangina for The Living Church.

Our monthly newsletter, E-Notes, was released this week.


eBook Special

Through Thursday, January 30, the eBook of Bonhoeffer the Assassin? by Mark Thiessen Nation, Anthony Siegrist, and Daniel Umbel is available for $3.99 (86% off) at participating retailers, including:

Barnes & Noble

BA Books & Authors on the Web – October 18, 2013

Cover ArtAt Credo Magazine, Lucas Bradburn reviewed The King in His Beauty by Thomas Schreiner.

“When it comes to a book claiming to be a biblical theology, what could be more of a commendation than saying that it helped me understand the theology of the Bible better? Not only this, but The King in His Beauty also gave me a glimpse of what the future holds for all those who place their trust in Jesus Christ— a glorious encounter with the majesty of the King of kings and Lord of lords.”

M. Miller at Academics reviewed Bonhoeffer the Assassin? by Mark Thiessen Nation, Anthony Siegrist, and Daniel Umbel.

Carl Raschke, author of GloboChrist and The Next Reformation, asked “Was Paul Really a Political Theologian?” at The Other Journal.

At Words on the Word, Abram K-J shared the post “Highlights in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the NT (Stein, Jobes, Köstenberger).” reviewed The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, by Lee McDonald.

At Christianity Today, Brett McCracken listed Desiring the Kingdom by James K.A Smith as one of the Top 5 Influences on his new book, Gray Matters.


eBook Specials

Today only, Friday October 11, the Commentary on Philippians eBook by Robert Gundry is available free at participating retailers. Learn more here.

History and the Historical Jesus – an Excerpt from The Story of Jesus in History and Faith

The following is an excerpt from The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, by Lee McDonald


Cover ArtModern historical assumptions present a significant challenge to biblical perspectives. Jürgen Moltmann agrees as he concludes: “In face of the positivistic and mechanistic definition of the nature of history as a self-contained system of cause and effect, the assertion of a raising of Jesus by God appears as a myth concerning a supernatural incursion which is contradicted by all our experience of the world.” When viewed from the perspective of modern historical assumptions, miraculous events are regularly classified as myth or legend, but not reality.

Contemporary theologians must determine whether there are limitations in modern historical methodology and whether there are real events of the past that are simply not discernible through this methodology. Those who confess that Jesus has been raised from the dead, the quintessential affirmation of the Christian faith, must wrestle with the complexity of the relationship between history and faith. The Gospel writers, and indeed all New Testament writers, were interested in the story of Jesus, in what he did or said, and they also acknowledged that Jesus cannot be understood apart from the Easter faith that they proclaimed.

The resurrection of Jesus is the presupposition for Jesus becoming the object of Christian preaching. Long ago, George Ladd aptly addressed the problem:

“The critical historian, as historian, cannot talk about God and his acts in the Incarnation, the Resurrection, and the Parousia; for although such events occur within the history of our world, they have to do not merely with the history of men, but with God in history; and for the historian as historian, the subject matter of history . . . is man. Therefore the historical-critical method has self-imposed limitations which render it incompetent to interpret redemptive history.”

The New Testament writers affirm God’s activity in history and supremely in his activity in the story of Jesus’ life and fate. There is a theological as well as historical way to understand and appropriate that activity today, and I will return to this topic at the end of this volume, but for now, we will ask about ways that biblical scholarship in modern times describes the distinction between “the historical Jesus” and “the Christ of faith.”

©2013 by Lee Martin McDonald. Published by Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.


For more information on The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, click here.

New Release: The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, by Lee McDonald

Cover ArtMany books are available on the historical Jesus, but few address issues that are critically central to Christian faith—namely, Jesus as resurrected Lord, Christ, and Son of God. This comprehensive introduction to the study of the historical Jesus brings together two critically important dimensions of the story of Jesus: what we can know about him in his historical context and what we can responsibly claim about his significance for faith today.

In, The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, leading New Testament scholar Lee McDonald examines key aspects of the story of Jesus, from his birth to his resurrection, and introduces the central issues and approaches in the study of the historical Jesus. He also considers issues of faith, taking account of theological perspectives that secular historiography cannot address.


“Lee Martin McDonald writes with skill, insight, and spiritual energy….This book is highly recommended for classes and all who find Jesus’ story riveting and compelling.” — James H. Charlesworth, Princeton Theological Seminary

“[P]erhaps the best technical survey of Jesus research now in print. It is at once exhaustively thorough, painstakingly fair, and enormously readable. This is simply a great book that will serve scholars and students alike.” — Gary Burge, Wheaton College and Graduate School

“Careful reading of this book will profit believers and skeptics alike. I am pleased to recommend it.” — Craig A. Evans, Acadia Divinity College

“[A] wide-ranging compendium of useful information on the study of the historical Jesus, including an account of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus that engages the major critical issues…..This is vintage McDonald.” — Stanley E. Porter, McMaster Divinity College

“McDonald has picked up the gauntlet thrown down by David F. Strauss in the nineteenth century, effectively challenging his two dichotomies: that the Jesus of history must be divorced from the Christ of faith, and that the historicity of the Fourth Gospel is decimated by that of the Synoptics.” — Paul N. Anderson, George Fox University

“McDonald surveys the broad range of issues and sources in historical Jesus research in a way that is irenic toward all sides. Rather than pursuing a partisan line he writes as an independent observer and yet with sensitivity to the scholars with whom he disagrees.” — Craig Keener, Asbury Theological Seminary


Lee Martin McDonald (PhD, University of Edinburgh), before his retirement, was professor of New Testament studies and president of Acadia Divinity College. He is the author or coauthor of several books, including The Biblical Canon, and coeditor of The Canon Debate (with James Sanders), and The World of the New Testament (with Joel Green). He lives in Mesa, Arizona.

For more information on The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, click here.

BA Books & Authors on the Web – October 04, 2013

Cover ArtNijay Gupta reviewed Lee McDonald’s The Story of Jesus in History and Faith, at Crux Sola.

“McDonald represents a view that tries to see faith and history as complementary (not contradictory), and that something is missing when you eliminate one. In terms of history, McDonald urges: ‘Faith in Jesus as the Christ is faith in a historical phenomenon in the sense that Christian faith is centered on God’s activity in a historical person who lived and died in Palestine in the first century’ (p. 21). On the other hand, ‘Faith…realizes that appropriation of God’s activity in Jesus cannot be found in the historical-critical dimension, but through faith alone’ (p. 21)…..I warmly recommend this to teachers and students as a ‘faith-friendly’ guide to studying the historical Jesus!”

Also, Nijay shared an excerpt from Donald Hagner’s The New Testament: A Historical and Theological Introduction, for his post on the Purpose of Matthew.

Matthew Montonini shared his experience attending the Mullen Lecture recently delivered by Francis Moloney at St. Mary’s Seminary. Moloney’s topic was “Love in the Gospel of John: to What End?” based on his book Love in the Gospel of John.

Jesus Among Friends and Enemies, edited by Chris Keith and Larry Hurtado, was included in Brian LePort’s list of resources for studying John the Baptist.

Perry Oakes reviewed Gary Long’s Grammatical Concepts 101 for Biblical Hebrew, for RBL.

Dave, at Can’t Catch My Breath, shared from Eddie Gibbs’ The Rebirth of the Church.

J. Todd Billings’ Union with Christ, G.K. Beale’s A New Testament Biblical Theology, and Bryan Chapell’s Christ-Centered Preaching, were recommended in Derek Rishmawy’s Reformedish Seminary Starter Kit.

Michael Kruger, at The Gospel Coalition, included Herman Bavinck’s Reformed Dogmatics: Prolegomena in his Top 10 Books on the Bible’s Authority.

Englewood Review of Books featured Bonhoeffer the Assassin?, by  Mark Thiessen Nation, Anthony Siegrist, and Daniel Umble in their new release update.