For the first time in one volume this book presents contributions to the textual criticism of the New Testament made over the past twenty years by Bart Ehrman, one of the premier textual scholars in North America. The collection includes fifteen previously published articles and six lectures (delivered at Duke University and Yale University) on a range of topics of central importance to the field.
Following a general essay that gives an introduction to the field for beginners are several essays dealing with text-critical method, especially pertaining to the classification of the Greek manuscript witnesses. There then follow two articles on the history of the text, several articles on important specific textual problems, and three articles on the importance and use of patristic evidence for establishing the text and writing the history of its transmission. The volume concludes with six lectures designed to show the importance not only of reconstructing an allegedly “original” text but also of recognizing how that text was changed by scribes of the early Christian centuries.
This book will be of vital interest to any scholar or advanced student of the New Testament and early Christianity. It will make an ideal companion volume for Bart Ehrman’s ground-breaking study,
The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture: The Effects of Early Christological Controversies on the Text of the New Testament (Oxford, 1993) and the volume he co-edited with Michael Holmes,
The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research: Essays on the Status Quaestionis (Eerdmans, 1995).
Bart D. Ehrman received his Ph.D. summa cum laude from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1985. He is currently the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Two of his most significant recent publications are
The Apostolic Fathers (Harvard University Press, 2004) and
Lost Christianities: The Battles for Scripture and the Faiths We Never Knew (Oxford, 2004). He is currently at work on a Greek/Latin/Coptic – English Edition of the apocryphal Gospels (Oxford Press), and a commentary on second-century Gospels for the Hermeneia Commentary series (Fortress Press).
'Bart Ehrman, in merely two decades, has emerged as one of a handful of New Testament textual critics worldwide who work at the cutting edge. Most of the fascinating and meticulous articles in this volume formed the basis of or carry forward his influential work on The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture (1993), which displayed for us the socio-historical and theological contexts of textual variants, demonstrating effectively their dynamic, creative role in early Christianity. The essays are interestingly informative, remarkably insightful, and–in the best sense–genuinely provocative. Overall, the volume, which includes detailed methodological studies and treatments of individual texts, as well as the Kenneth Clark Lectures at Duke University (1997) and the Shaffer Lectures at Yale (2004), will be a stimulating challenge to biblical and patristic scholars and to early church historians.' Eldon Jay Epp. '
..we are grateful to Brill for allowing us to see the development of Ehrman’s thinking.[..] his essays are clear, concise, well-researched, and documented with good and helpful footnotes and bibliographies. We congratulate him on his labors to date and look forward to many more perceptive contributions to textual criticism from his keyboard.' J.K. Elliott,
Review of Biblical Literature, 2007 '
A must for anyone interested in the contributions of one of today’s premier textual critics, this collection of twentyone essays exposes readers to the breadth of Ehrman’s scholarly output over the last quarter century...An essential collection for anyone interested in the interface between NT textual criticism and disciplines once considered ancillary to it.' Juan Hernández Jr.,
Religious Studies Review 36, 1, 2010
All those interested in the New Testament and the history of early Christianity.