“The Early Text of the New Testament” is Now in Paperback

Michael J. Kruger

Posted on

June 18, 2014

In 2012, Oxford University Press published The Early Text of the New Testament, edited by myself and my friend Chuck Hill.  The volume was designed to assess the most primitive state of the NT text available from our sources.  It covered three main subject areas: (1) The textual and scribal culture of early Christianity; (2) The manuscript tradition itself; and (3) Citations of the NT in early Christian writings.

Contributors included Tjitze Baarda, Jeff Bingham, Juan Chapa, Scott Charlesworth, Carl Cosaert, J.K. Elliott, Paul Foster, Harry Gamble, Peter Head, Juan Hernandez, Larry Hurtado, Tobias Nicklas, Stan Porter, Dieter Roth, James Royse, Billy Todd, Christopher Tuckett, Joseph Verheyden, Tommy Wasserman, and Peter Williams.

Chuck and I also contributed.  My article was entitled, “Early Christian Attitudes toward the Reproduction of Texts,” where I explored what Christians actually said about textual reproduction (and what they said about the sanctity of their texts), as opposed to what they actually did in textual reproduction (which is another matter altogether).

Chuck wrote a fantastic article entitled, “‘In These Very Words’: Methods and Standards of Literary Borrowing in the Second Century.”  He tackled the well-worn issue of patristic citations of NT texts and whether we should expect those citations to reflect the actual state of the text.

One of the biggest complaints we got from students (and fellow scholars!) was the excruciatingly high cost of the book–$175.  Of course, this is not unusual for a large (483 pp.) book from Oxford, but it is painful nonetheless.

On this score, I just received the good news yesterday from OUP, that the paperback edition is now available, and for the bargain price of only $45. So, for all of those who might have delayed purchasing the book due to the high price, now is a good time.  And maybe now I will not feel so guilty if I assign it as required reading for one of my classes!


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