book by book
The purpose of this work is to introduce the New Testament to novice readers. And we consider them to be of two types.
The first are sort of dummies of the Bible. These are people who want to explore the New Testament, but have no idea where to start. These are those who, raised in a post-Christian society, see around them Christian relics existing as ruins and vestiges of the past. Despite this fact, these people seek to understand the Bible on two levels: either on a purely literary level, or on the level of some kind of spiritual research. Whatever this reader's intention, he or she will find in these pages the historical and cultural contexts for understanding the New Testament. He will find enough relevant information to make an intelligent reading of the 27 books that make up this canon.
The second type of neophyte reader is the Bible student. He is at a university or seminary, studying theology or philosophy. He knows the Bible for its cultural value, but has never read it personally, just as one would read another great work. To successfully read this, he needs a succinct guide that refers to historical and cultural elements, which in turn will help him understand the text. In addition to the historical and cultural contexts exposed in the chapters that follow, this reader will find the structures and plans of the books in order to navigate its content. He will subsequently know which avenues to pursue in his study of the New Testament.
Author: William E McCall