The Miracles in the Gospels

The Miracles in the Gospels

This text by an accomplished Pentecostal scholar provides the reader with an accessible and up-to-date treatment of Jesus' miracles that is sufficiently apprised of the primary and secondary literature to keep advanced students and specialists interested.  Moreover, Warrington provides an enjoyable read, and those familiar with his Pentecostal Theology will not likely be disappointed by his prose or content.

The handling of miracle accounts is consistent and may be summed up in about four parts.  Warrington offers (1) a chart with the relevant literary contexts, (2) a general exegesis,(3) examines each Gospel under the heading "Messages from Matthew," etc., pointing out things "uniquely" (a favourite word of Warrington) presented by the three Evangelists (sometimes Mark and Luke are examined together, and ends with (4) a conclusion.  Warrington's analysis of each Gospel when covering parallel accounts includes the authors' phraseology, lexical features, verbal and grammatical exegesis, lots of interesting facts, cultural and physical background (e.g.., the compositional description and function of Palestinian roofs (Mark's account), and the likely Hellenistic adaptation of Luke, describing the removal of the "tiles" (keramon) by the men.  Complex Greek arguements are not the staple of this text; frequent recourse to important words or phrases in the Greek is.  And if something is happening for the first time or is outstanding, Warrington lets the read know it - he is a gold mine of helpful facts that will interest scholar and pastor.

This stimulating effort is the best recent production on the miracles of Jesus that the reviewer knows of, granting the field is a rather small one.  Warrington's insights, constant supply of supporting lexical and statistical data, identification of unique features in the various Gospels, fresh approach - though traditionally redactional - contextual exegesis, and high reverence for the text and recognition that the miracle stories and the Gospels themselves are primarily about Jesus while not ignoring or failing to interact with or at least recognise scholarship that disagrees with his stance makes this a quality work.  Warrington's text on the miracle stories of Jesus will hopefully prove seminal for future publications about Jesus' miracles.  Highly recommented.

David L Ricci, is an associate professor in the Bible and Theology Departmentat Northpoint Bible College in Haverhill, Massachusetts.

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