Acts: An Exegetical Commentary, Vol 2

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ISBN: 9780801048371



New Testament scholar Craig Keener is known for his meticulous and comprehensive research. This commentary on Acts, his magnum opus, may be the largest and most thoroughly documented Acts commentary available. Useful for the study of not only Acts but also early Christianity, this work sets Acts in its first-century context.
In this volume, the second of four, Keener continues his detailed exegesis of Acts, utilizing an unparalleled range of ancient sources and offering a wealth of fresh insights. This magisterial commentary will be an invaluable resource for New Testament professors and students, pastors, Acts scholars, and libraries.
The indexes for the entire four-volume set may be downloaded under the Resources section on the left side of this page.


“This is the most expansive treatment of Acts in modern scholarship. Keener offers the reader a sweeping tour of the relevant ancient material and modern scholarship on Acts. He takes Acts seriously as a work of ancient history; at the same time, he is aware of the literary and rhetorical dimensions of the text.”Gregory E. Sterling, The Reverend Henry L. Slack Dean, The Lillian Claus Professor of New Testament, Yale Divinity School

“Craig Keener, a master of primary and secondary sources, has crafted another meticulous commentary that is a joy to read. It is full of information that shows Keener’s unusual industriousness and precision. Highly recommended.”James H. Charlesworth, director and editor, Princeton Dead Sea Scrolls Project; George L. Collord Professor of New Testament Language and Literature, Princeton Theological Seminary

“Acts has now taken a new step forward . . . the starting point for all Acts scholarship from now on!”Scot McKnight, professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary

“A magnificent achievement. This volume continues in the same vein as the first, with superbly detailed exegesis of the text as well as many helpful excursuses on more general topics of interest–with a wealth of material to back up all the claims made. Without any shadow of doubt, an indispensable reference work for all students of Acts and early Christianity.”Christopher Tuckett, professor of New Testament studies, Pembroke College, University of Oxford; president of the Society for New Testament Studies, 2013

“Over the course of the last decade, Craig Keener has proved himself to be one of the greatest living commentators on the New Testament. This second volume on Acts–packed with an incredible amount of contextual information as well as wisdom about the text itself–is bound to become a standard reference work for many years to come. Sell the dog and buy this book!”Ben Witherington III, Amos Professor of New Testament, Asbury Theological Seminary; doctoral faculty, St. Andrews University, Scotland

“This commentary is so thorough and comprehensive that it can truly be said to ‘leave no stone unturned.’ Keener has single-handedly wrought an encyclopedic work, the likes of which only whole teams of scholars have been able to produce in multivolume compendia. It therefore will be the first commentary to which scholars, students, and pastors will turn with any question on the text of Acts.”Seyoon Kim, professor of New Testament, School of Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary

“Keener’s commentary on Acts is a tour de force, another Beginnings of Christianity, which comprised five volumes, except it is by one scholar, and it focuses more on exegesis of the text. One might be daunted by such hefty volume(s) on one book of the New Testament, but be reassured: this commentary may be all that you will ever need on Acts. It is not only exhaustive in its historical detail, it is rich in inspiring interpretation.”David E. Garland, dean and holder of the Charles J. and Eleanor McLerran Delancey Chair of the Dean and professor of Christian Scriptures, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University

“Somewhat surprisingly, a socio-historical approach to Acts still needs to be defended and its value demonstrated. No one does this better–is more informed about ancient literature, parallels, and precedents, and more interactively and fruitfully engaged with contemporary literature and issues–than Craig Keener. For anyone wanting to appreciate how Acts ‘worked’ in its original context and to get into the text at some depth, Keener will be indispensable and ‘first off the shelf.'”†James D. G. Dunn, Emeritus Lightfoot Professor of Divinity, University of Durham

“Keener takes very seriously the claim of the book of Acts to be historiography. His encyclopedic knowledge of ancient literature and his intelligent skill as an exegete make this a magisterial commentary.”Richard Bauckham, professor emeritus of New Testament studies, University of St. Andrews; senior scholar, Ridley Hall, Cambridge

“Craig Keener has provided us with a rich gem of a commentary on Acts. One can use it and get a real sense of what this key work is all about.”Darrell L. Bock, research professor of New Testament studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

“This commentary sets Acts in its ancient social and historical setting. Keener shows convincingly how broadly and deeply Acts participates in ancient Hellenistic and Jewish thinking. This meticulous reconstruction fits well with his deep insights on Lukan theology in Acts. Keener’s wide reading of scholarly discussion is stupendous. A marvelous, impressive, and inspiring commentary!”Manfred Lang, associate professor of New Testament, Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg

“This promises to be the most comprehensive commentary on Acts to date. Keener presents a socio-historical reading of the text with meticulous precision, and his knowledge of scholarly research is impressive. The book of Acts is read as a historiographical work in which its author rewrites traditions; the documentation from ancient Jewish literature is exceptionally rich. Keener treats hermeneutical issues and the historical reliability of the text astutely and clearly. From now on, any exegesis of Acts will need to take into account this major work.”Daniel Marguerat, professor of New Testament, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

“As one has come to expect from Keener, there is thorough knowledge and use of the best and most important secondary literature and abundant utilization of a wide range of ancient sources. This is a commentary that will continue to serve as a detailed resource for both scholars and students wishing to explore the book of Acts.”Stanley E. Porter, president, dean, and professor of New Testament, McMaster Divinity College

“This book is a monumental exegetical commentary thanks to the amount of literary and social-historical information in it. Scholars and readers of the Acts of the Apostles will find it a precious source for consultation.”Fr. G. Claudio Bottini, professor of introduction and exegesis of the New Testament and emeritus dean, Faculty of Biblical Sciences and Archaeology (Studium Biblicum Franciscanum), Jerusalem

“Craig Keener’s academic commentaries are among the most important in print, because they not only summarize former scholarship but also add so many new insights from primary literature of the time.”David Instone-Brewer, senior research fellow in rabbinics and New Testament, Tyndale House, Cambridge


Craig S. Keener (Ph.D., Duke University) is F. M. and Ada Thompson Professor of Biblical Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary. He is author of 30 books, 5 of which have won awards in Christianity Today. More than a million copies of his books are in circulation; the most popular is The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament, which provides cultural background on each passage of the New Testament. Craig is also the New Testament editor for the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible, which won the International Book Award for Christianity and Bible of the year in the Christian Book Awards. Craig is editor of the Bulletin for Biblical Research and is past president of the Evangelical Theological Society. Craig’s wife, Dr. Médine Moussounga Keener, was a refugee in her home country of Congo; their story appears in Impossible Love: The True Story of an African Civil War, Miracles, and Hope against All Odds (Chosen, 2016). 

Additional information

Weight 2500.0 g
Dimensions 254 × 184 × 76 mm

Keener, Craig S., (Author)

Publication Summary

Baker Academic, Div of Baker Publishing Group (2013), Edition: Har/Com, 1200 pages

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