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In the Fullness of Time: A Historian Looks at Christmas, Easter, and the Early Church Hardcover – February 3, 1998
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Dr. Maier provides a great abundance of background information, most of it fresh and stimulating. His description of places and customs, and the sheer number of interesting historical details and statistics, cannot fail to excite. (Tabernacle Bookshop London, England 2004-06-03)
. . . Treat yourself to an entertaining while informative text which seeks answers for many of the questions that have been asked for centuries! (Dave (Doc) Kirby Book Bits, WTBF - AM/FM 2004-06-03)
Dr. Maier makes a faraway land seem much more accessible. (Dave (Doc) Kirby Book Bits, WTBF - AM/FM 2004-06-03) --1
From the Publisher
Dramatic true stories behind the crucial events of Christianity, lavishly illustrated. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Maier is a professor of ancient history at Western Michigan, and brings credibility and scholarship to a subject that is frequently approached with bias, often from polar perspectives. Professor Maier is one of the leading scholars on the writings of first century Jewish historian Josephus, and this book includes appropriate and informative references to this ancient source. As a student of history and an attorney, I found the book stimulating and thought provoking. However, the book most certainly does not read like a history text, and is interesting to both the historian and the person simply looking for some information on the historical context of the birth of Christ, his crucification and the biblical account of his resurrection. The book also examines the early church and the spread of Christianity. Anyone with an interest in these topics should read this work.
I very much recommend this book, and look forward to reading other works by Paul Maier.
What was initially three=volumes has now been published in this one, making for great reading and giving. You'll be amazed at the historicity of these events as Maier documents them for us in thorough classical research with footnotes and bibliography provided.
"In the Fullness of Time" continues this tradition. Maier has basically consolidated 3 other books into one larger volume (with a few changes) and he discusses the first Christmas, the first Easter and the ministries of the early Apostles, especially Paul and Peter.
Maier does a great job of bringing actual documentation that supports the stories of Christmas, Easter and the Book of Acts. He includes the works of Roman and Jewish historians, explains Roman and Jewish religious and political practices and deals with alternate theories that have been proposed. While this could be dry reading, Maier makes it lively and this volume reads more like a novel than a textbook.
So, who is this book for? If you are a well-read Christian who has looked into many of the facts that back the New Testament as it is written on your own, you won't find much new ground covered in this book. The internet has lots of this information scattered about. However, you are unlikely to find sources as concise and as well-written as this one. Plus, if you are interested in further research, it is well-documented with tons of footnotes.
If you are a new Christian or are newly interested in the history behind Christianity, this is a powerful introduction.
I give this one a grade of "A"