Michael F. Bird
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About Michael F. Bird
Michael F. Bird is a leading academic on New Testament studies and Christian Theology. He is Lecturer in Theology at Ridley College in Melbourne, Australia.
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Titles By Michael F. Bird
Your ticket from the twenty-first century to the era of Jesus and the first Christians. A readable, one-volume introduction placing the entire New Testament and early Christianity in its original context, written by distinguished scholar and author N. T. Wright.
An ideal guide for students, The New Testament in Its World addresses the many difficult questions faced by those studying early Christianity, including:
- What was the first century understanding of the Kingdom of God?
- What is the meaning of the resurrection in its original context?
- What were the Gospels, and how did they come about?
- Who was Paul and why are his letters so controversial?
Written for both classroom and personal use, this book brings together decades of ground-breaking research, writing, and teaching into one volume. It presents the New Testament books—along with their subjects: Jesus and the early church—within the historical and social context of Second Temple Judaism and Greco-Roman politics and culture.
The New Testament in Its World allows you to recover the excitement of what it was like to live as Christians in the first or second centuries.
- Surveys of each New Testament book that discuss their significance and provides commentary on their contents, along with implications for the Christian life.
- Major sections on the historical Jesus, the resurrection of Jesus, and Paul's chronology and theology.
- Up-to-date discussions of textual criticism and the canonization of the New Testament.
- Frequent illustrations, maps, charts, diagrams, and artwork provide additional explanations and insights.
- A distillation of the life work of N. T. Wright on the New Testament with input from Michael Bird.
Also available are Video and Workbook companion resources (sold separately) to enhance learning and experience the world of the New Testament.
Religious freedom is up for debate and needs to be defended--discover how.
In Religious Freedom in a Secular Age author Michael Bird argues that religious freedom should not be preserved by churches entrusting themselves to the protection of a conservative leader draped in the apparel of civil religion, nor should they consent to allowing religious freedom to be steam rolled by progressive activists with their increasing hostility towards people of faith. What is needed instead is a better appreciation for how secularism can work to create space for people of all faiths and none, to resolve tense relationships between church and state, and to come to a fair and equitable settlement when religious liberty and LGBTQI+ rights come into conflict. Bird tackles complicated debates about the nature, extent, and limitations of religious freedom with a view to encouraging Christians to stand up for their faith in a post-Christian world in a way that is humble and gentle yet also courageous.
"This book's global perspective will challenge readers of all backgrounds and beliefs toward better arguments and better understanding." - John D. Inazu, Washington University in St. Louis
"Bird demonstrates that religious liberty is of interest not only to Christians but also to the marketplace of ideas that helped deepen faith while simultaneously making room for peaceable difference." - Andrew T. Walker, professor and author of Liberty for All
Answers to the most common questions and misconceptions about the Bible
Seven Things I Wish Christians Knew about the Bible is a short and readable introduction to the Bible—its origins, interpretation, truthfulness, and authority.
Bible scholar, prolific author, and Anglican minister Michael Bird helps Christians understand seven important "things" about this unique book:
- how the Bible was put together;
- what "inspiration" means;
- how the Bible is true;
- why the Bible needs to be rooted in history;
- why literal interpretation is not always the best interpretation;
- how the Bible gives us knowledge, faith, love, and hope; and
- how Jesus Christ is the center of the Bible.
Seven Things presents a clear and understandable evangelical account of the Bible's inspiration, canonization, significance, and relevance in a way that is irenic and compelling. It is a must read for any serious Bible reader who desires an informed and mature view of the Bible that will enrich their faith.
Gospel-Centered Theology for Today
Evangelical Theology, Second Edition helps today's readers understand and practice the doctrines of the Christian faith by presenting a gospel-centered theology that is accessible, rigorous, and balanced. According author Michael Bird the gospel is the fulcrum of Christian doctrine; the gospel is where God meets us and where we introduce the world to God. And as such, an authentically evangelical theology is the working out of the gospel in the various doctrines of Christian theology.
The text helps readers learn the essentials of Christian theology through several key features, including:
- A "What to Take Home" section at end of every part that gives readers a run-down on all the important things they need to know.
- Tables, sidebars, and questions for discussion to help reinforce key ideas and concepts
- A "Comic Belief" section, since reading theology can often be dry and cerebral, so that readers enjoy their learning experience through some theological humor added for good measure.
Now in its second edition, Evangelical Theology has proven itself in classrooms around the world as a resource that helps readers not only understand the vital doctrines of Christian theology but one that shows them how the gospel should shape how they think, pray, preach, teach, and minister in the world.
Engaging critically with Bart Ehrman, James Dunn, and other scholars, Bird demonstrates that a full-fledged adoptionist Christology did not emerge until the late second century. As he delves into passages often used to support the idea of an early adoptionist Christology, including Romans 1:3–4 and portions of the speeches in Acts, Bird persuasively argues that early Christology was in fact incarnational, not adoptionist. He concludes by surveying and critiquing notable examples of adoptionism in modern theology.
The inerrancy of the Bible--the belief that the Bible is without error--is often a contentious topic among mainstream Christianity.
Like other titles in the Counterpoints collection, this volume gives those interested in theology the tools they need to draw informed conclusions on debated issues by showcasing the range of positions in a way that helps readers understand the perspectives--especially where and why they diverge.
Each essay in Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy considers:
- The present context, viability, and relevance for the contemporary evangelical Christian witness.
- Whether and to what extent Scripture teaches its own inerrancy.
- The position's assumed or implied understandings of the nature of Scripture, God, and truth.
- Three difficult biblical texts: one that concerns intra-canonical contradictions, one that raises questions of theological plurality, and one that concerns historical authenticity.
Five Views on Biblical Inerrancy serves not only as a single-volume resource for surveying the current debate, but also as a catalyst both for understanding and advancing the conversation further. Contributors include Al Mohler, Kevin Vanhoozer, Michael Bird, Peter Enns, and John Franke.
In this book, through a distinctive evangelical and critical approach, Michael Bird explores the historical development of the four canonical Gospels. He shows how the memories and faith of the earliest believers formed the Gospel accounts of Jesus that got written and, in turn, how these accounts further shaped the early church.
Bird's study clarifies the often confusing debates over the origins of the canonical Gospels. Bird navigates recent concerns and research as he builds an informed case for how the early Christ followers wrote and spread the story of Jesus -- the story by which they believed they were called to live. The Gospel of the Lord is ideal for students or anyone who wants to know the story behind the four Gospels.
Watch an interview with Michael Bird from our Eerdmans Author Interview Series:
Taking a stand over the gender-issue divide
Author and New Testament scholar Michael Bird was formerly in favor of distinct gender roles in ministry, a viewpoint commonly called “complementarianism.” But inconsistencies in practice and careful biblical study convinced him to rethink his position.
Originally published as a short ebook, Bourgeois Babes, Bossy Wives, and Bobby Haircuts offers an engaging, incisive perspective on biblical gender equality and the egalitarian view—a preference for allowing women to hold teaching and leadership positions in ministry.
While Bird is now egalitarian, he nevertheless strikes a respectful tone toward those in his previous camp, seeking to craft a perspective that both values women and upholds biblical differences between the sexes. Humorous and hard-hitting, Bird will challenge readers on both sides of the gender-issue divide.
This workbook accompanies The New Testament in Its World by N. T. Wright and Michael F. Bird. Following the textbook's structure, it offers assessment questions, exercises, and activities designed to support the students' learning experience. Reinforcing the teaching in the textbook, this workbook will not only help to enhance their understanding of the New Testament books as historical, literary, and social phenomena located in the world of early Christianity, but also guide them to think like a first-century believer while reading the text responsibly for today.
Modern Christians have often hesitated to embrace the ancient creeds because of our “nothing but the Bible” tradition. In What Christians Ought to Believe Michael Bird opens our eyes to the possibilities of the Apostle’s Creed as a way to explore and understand the basic teachings of the Christian faith.
Bringing together theological commentary, tips for application, and memorable illustrations, What Christians Ought to Believe summarizes the basic tenets of the Christian faith using the Apostle’s Creed as its entryway. After first emphasizing the importance of creeds for the formation of the Christian faith, each chapter, following the Creed’s outline, introduces the Father, the Son, and the Spirit and the Church. An appendix includes the Apostles’ Creed in the original Latin and Greek.
What Christians Ought to Believe is ideally suited for both the classroom and the church setting to teach beginning students and laypersons the basics of what Christians ought to affirm if they are to be called Christians.
In his recent book How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher From Galilee historian Bart Ehrman explores a claim that resides at the heart of the Christian faith— that Jesus of Nazareth was, and is, God. According to Ehrman, though, this is not what the earliest disciples believed, nor what Jesus claimed about himself.
The first response book to this latest challenge to Christianity from Ehrman, How God Became Jesus features the work of five internationally recognized biblical scholars. While subjecting his claims to critical scrutiny, they offer a better, historically informed account of why the Galilean preacher from Nazareth came to be hailed as “the Lord Jesus Christ.” Namely, they contend, the exalted place of Jesus in belief and worship is clearly evident in the earliest Christian sources, shortly following his death, and was not simply the invention of the church centuries later.
A new commentary for today’s world, The Story of God Bible Commentary explains and illuminates each passage of Scripture in light of the Bible’s grand story. The first commentary series to do so, SGBC offers a clear and compelling exposition of biblical texts, guiding readers in how to creatively and faithfully live out the Bible in their own contexts. Its story-centric approach is idea for pastors, students, Sunday school teachers, and all who want to understand the Bible in today’s world.
SGBC is organized into three easy-to-use sections, designed to help readers live out God’s story: Listen to the Story; Explain the Story; and Live the Story.
Praise for SGBC:
“The easy-to-use format and practical guidance brings God’s grand story to modern-day life so anyone can understand how it applies today.”—Andy Stanley
“Opens up the biblical story in ways that move us to act.”—Darrell L. Bock
“It makes the text sing and helps us hear the story afresh.”—John Ortberg
“This commentary breaks new ground.”—Craig L. Blomberg