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Craig Keener: Acts, Volume Three

Paul’s ministry in Corinth is supported by interesting historical material about Roman Corinth and Claudius’ expulsion of Jews from Rome, of whom two were Aquila and Priscilla. What drew Paul to this couple—shared faith, a common trade, or Paul’s mission? Keener says, probably the latter. Keener produces some excellent historical notes to pinpoint Gallio’s term of office as proconsul of Achaia in Corinth, including the year that Claudius expelled Jews from Rome. Gallio served in Corinth from July 1, 51 C.E. to July 1, 52.

The mention of Priscilla before Aquila in Acts 18:26 in the UBS text probably indicates that Priscilla was the primary instructor in their private meeting with Apollos.

Keener explains that the Ephesian disciples’ “defective experience and knowledge of the Spirit has alerted Paul to their incomplete knowledge of Christ” (p. 2819). He continues, “John’s baptism was good, but it was only preparatory to baptism in Jesus’s name and the greater baptism in the Spirit (Acts 1:4-5; 2:38)” (p. 2820).

In summary, Keener’s work is well worth reading. It is loaded with gems to make preaching and teaching come alive. Keener is well organized, readable, interesting, and valuable. I found the work to be thoroughly informative and enjoyable. The book is attractively laid out on 7 x 10 inch pages, with ample white space.

Reviewed by James A. Borland


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Category: Biblical Studies, Winter 2016

About the Author: James A. Borland, Th.D. (Grace Theological Seminary), is past president of the Evangelical Theological Society, and Secretary-Treasurer since 1992. He is Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Theology at the Rawlings School of Divinity at Liberty University (Lynchburg, Virginia) having taught there since 1977. He served on the N.T. Executive Translation Committee for the NKJV, penned Christ in the Old Testament, A General Introduction to the New Testament, and six biblical commentaries. He is a founding member of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

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