The debate about the biographical genre of the Gospels is alive and well, with several major books coming out at the moment. Here’s my review of Craig Keener’s massive Christobiography, just published in Theology.
Back in the late 1990s, I started to receive books with personal dedications in a spidery scrawl, saying nice things about my work having inspired the author! In fact, Keener’s first commentary on Matthew (IVP, 1997) was one of the first (if not the first) to include a section on ‘Matthew as Biography’ in his introduction, while his larger commentary (Eerdmans, 1999) has a major detailed discussion of ancient biography and Jewish sources with regard to historical accuracy. This commentary was republished ten years later (Matthew: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary, Eerdmans, 2009) with the addition of an extended discussion of ‘Matthew and Graeco-Roman Rhetoric’, which begins with the importance of the genres of ancient biography and histories.
Read the complete review in my Book Reviews section.