Fortress Press

Paul: The Apostle's Life, Letters, and Thought


The Apostle's Life, Letters, and Thought

E. P. Sanders (Author)


E. P. Sanders offers an expansive introduction to the apostle, navigating some of the thorniest issues in scholarship using language accessible to the novice and seasoned scholar alike. Always careful to distinguish what we can know historically from what we may only conjecture, and these from dogmatically driven misrepresentations, Sanders sketches a fresh picture of the apostle as an ardent defender of his own convictions, ever ready to craft the sorts of arguments that now fill his letters. 

  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9780800629564
  • eBook ISBN 9781506404974
  • Dimensions 6 x 9
  • Pages 898
  • Publication Date December 1, 2015


Review in Bible Today

Review in Choice

Review in Interpretation 71.4 (2017) by Garwood Anderson


"The revolution in New Testament studies that E.P. Sanders inaugurated with Paul and Palestinian Judaism reaches its culmination in Paul: The Apostle’s Life, Letters and Thought. This is a masterful portrait by a master historian."

Paula Fredriksen | The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

"The most important scholar of Christian origins gives us a brilliant, new, exciting picture of Paul, his life and his teachings. E.P. Sanders transformed the field of New Testament studies several decades ago, and he continues to expand our thinking with his extraordinary knowledge and original insights. With this remarkable book, we come to know Paul as a thinker, leader, and theologian in fresh, fascinating ways."

Susannah Heschel | Dartmouth College

"With customary clarity and precision, E. P. Sanders treats the reader to a lucid and compelling introduction to Paul the man, Paul the Jew, and Paul the apostle, as well as to the major Pauline epistles that have been so formative for Christianity. The emphasis on realia—topics such as travel and money—is refreshing. The appendix on homosexual practices in Greece and Rome provides a measured and matter-of-fact treatment that can contribute positively to contemporary discussion of this issue. An important book for scholars, students, clergy, and anyone who is fascinated and puzzled by the Apostle to the Gentiles."

Adele Reinhartz | University of Ottawa

"Erudite and engaging, E. P. Sanders provides an unparalleled primer on Paul, translating the insights of technical scholarship into everyday language accessible not only to academics and theologians but also to students and general readers. Displaying the same extraordinary command of biblical material, Jewish texts, and the broader ancient world that have always characterized his work, he offers a vivid portrait of the passionate missionary whose letters proved foundational for subsequent Christianity. Particular strengths of this volume include its careful differentiation between Paul's arguments themselves and the theological presuppositions undergirding them and its heightened attention to the importance of chronological development in Paul's thought."

Mark A. Chancey | Southern Methodist University

"There is no better introduction to Paul, for the simple reason that no one has approached the task with greater mastery of the sources, greater clarity of mind, and greater keenness of insight than E. P. Sanders. This is that rare textbook that will educate both beginning and lifelong students.  As such, it is the perfect capstone to Sanders’ own extraordinary career as both teacher and scholar."

Craig C. Hill | Duke Divinity School