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New Testament Theology

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Southwestern Journal of Theology 2023 Book Award (Honorable Mention, Theological Studies)

New Testament Theology
is a major new contribution to New Testament scholarship by renowned scholar Eckhard Schnabel.

While many New Testament theologies approach the material through a particular thematic construct (e.g., covenant), Schnabel takes a different approach. First, he focuses on Jesus Messiah and his significance for the early church. Second, he seeks to describe the theology of the New Testament as it was written and read in its historical context. This approach honors the fact that the authors and original readers of the New Testament were real people dealing with real issues in their specific ecclesiological, cultural, and missiological settings. Schnabel comprehensively combines a historical description of the New Testament's theology with a systematic reflection on the New Testament's message and the convictions of Jesus and his early followers.

This valuable contribution to the field will be insightful reading for students, scholars, and pastors.

Part 1: History, Faith, and Theology
1. Introduction
2. Historical Contexts
3. The Foundational Significance of Jesus
Part 2: The Proclamation of Jesus
4. The Beginning: John the Baptist
5. The Life and Mission of Jesus
6. The Proclamation of Jesus
Part 3: The Proclamation of the Jerusalem Apostles
7. The Missionary and Pastoral Responsibilities of the Jerusalem Apostles
8. The Proclamation of the Jerusalem Apostles
Part 4: The Proclamation of the Apostle Paul
9. The Missionary Work and Pastoral Responsibilities
10. The Gospel as Proclamation of the Fulfillment of God's Promises in Jesus Messiah
11. The Proclamation of Jesus Messiah
12. The Reality of the World
13. The Gift of Salvation through Jesus Messiah
14. The Messianic People of God
15. The Return of Jesus, the Day of Judgment, and the Final
Part 5: The Consolidation of the Apostolic Mission
16. The Theological Convictions of Mark
17. The Theological Convictions of Matthew
18. The Theological Convictions of Luke
19. The Theological Convictions of John
20. The Theological Convictions of the Preacher
Part 6: The Message of the New Testament
21. The Unity of the New Testament
22. Fundamental Reality: The Revelation of God, Creator and Savior
23. Incarnational Revelation: Jesus Messiah, Savior, Lord
24. Personal Salvation: Forgiveness of Sin and Reconciliation with God
25. Continuing Transformation: The Life of the Church as Messianic
26. Joyful Expectation: Life and Death, the Return of Jesus, and Eternal Life


"Those who read many volumes devoted to New Testament theology soon learn that there are highly varied and competing theories about what goes into New Testament theology. Ladd does not align with Kümmel, who does not align with Marshall, who does not align with Bultmann, who does not align with Vos, and so forth. What Schnabel offers is a tight interweaving of New Testament history with the theology that is interwoven with that history--a stimulating and creative mix that reflects vast knowledge and plausible integration."

D. A. Carson, emeritus professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"Eckhard Schnabel takes up the challenge of writing a theology of the New Testament and shows his comprehensive understanding of these writings in their historical settings. Particularly distinctive is Schnabel's lens of the New Testament as 'mission theology,' a perspective already well-honed in his previous scholarship. New Testament Theology offers a thoroughgoing engagement with the New Testament documents from a seasoned scholar."

Jeannine K. Brown, Bethel Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota

"Provoking and fundamental, this book is like a house built on the rock of the author's earlier monumental work, Early Christian Mission. Schnabel's solid historical research and sound evangelical conviction offer readers a reliable and fruitful reading of the theology of the New Testament. Here history and theology embrace each other in God's revelatory acts through Jesus the Messiah and the New Testaments writers' proclamations in their diverse missional and pastoral contexts. Readers will also find themselves engaging in the task of witnessing to the gospel in their diverse contexts. A perfect textbook."

Young S. Chae, Baekseok Seminary and Graduate School, Seoul, South Korea

"Despite the array of works on New Testament theology today, Schnabel adds a distinctive voice with distinctive insights. Unrivaled in its deep historical perspective, this book also explores a range of issues arising inductively from the text that are often neglected in other New Testament theologies."

Craig S. Keener, F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies, Asbury Theological Seminary

"In navigating the sea of diverse New Testament texts, we could all use the compass of a New Testament theology that is faithful to history, to the text, and to Jesus Christ. Now, with this magisterial volume, Eckhard Schnabel delivers just that. Readable yet erudite, comprehensive in detail yet alert to the big picture, this book will stand the test of time."

Nicholas Perrin, president, Trinity International University

"There is now a welcome upsurge in the publication of books on the theology of the New Testament. I would put Schnabel's New Testament Theology at the very top of the list. One has come to expect from him exceptional erudition, thoroughness, theological depth, and well-structured analysis. In this book, he masterfully introduces the primary task of doing a theology of the New Testament, takes us through the New Testament itself, and concludes with a systematic distillation of its message. What sets this theology apart is the recognition that the New Testament writings were created for actual audiences that reflected a cross section of society. By crafting fictional profiles of diverse individuals, Schnabel helps the reader imagine how different people in this ancient world might have responded to the theological messages, and how different people in our context might respond as well. Therefore, this book will not only deepen an understanding of the theology of the New Testament; it will also invigorate the preaching and teaching of that theology."

David E. Garland, professor of Christian Scriptures, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University

"Professor Eckhard J. Schnabel has already distinguished himself, with numerous outstanding commentaries and monographs, as one of the leading New Testament scholars in our day. The present new work is an all-encompassing treatment of the theological content of the New Testament. It focuses on the proclamation of Jesus and of his first followers in their historical context, based on a thorough analysis with an immense knowledge of the literature. It also offers enriching insights for our present-day Christian life, for reaching out to our environment in a mission-minded way, as did the first Christians in their time."

Peter Balla, chair of New Testament studies, Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary, Budapest

"Despite recent claims to the contrary, Schnabel demonstrates that the discipline of New Testament theology is alive and well. In a manner reminiscent of Adolf Schlatter's influential New Testament theology, Schnabel shows the central role that Jesus the Messiah plays in the theological convictions of the New Testament. Sensitive to history, theology, exegesis, and ethics--this is a powerful articulation of the unity of the New Testament!"

Joshua W. Jipp, professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

The Author

  1. Eckhard J. Schnabel
    Courtesy of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Eckhard J. Schnabel

    Eckhard J. Schnabel (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is Mary French Rockefeller Distinguished Professor of New Testament at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. He is the author of numerous scholarly articles and many books,...

    Continue reading about Eckhard J. Schnabel


Southwestern Journal of Theology 2023 Book Award (Honorable Mention, Theological Studies)