Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Book Notice - F. F. Bruce Biography

I don't read many biographies. But over the last few years I have read a few biographies and autobiographies by or about biblical and theological scholars. I find them interesting because I get to know the person behind the scholarship. so often all we know is the thoughts and opinions of a particular scholar on a particular topic. But biographies and autobiographies help us to understand the person better and they humanize the person behind the words. It is sort of like meeting your favorite DJ and getting to know the person behind the microphone. Here are some of the biographies/autobiographies I have read over the last few years.

Out of my Life and Thought by Albert Schweitzer

Now there is a new biography on F. F Bruce titled A Life by Timothy Grass (Paternoster, 2011) . Here is the what the blurb has to say:

Tim Grass outlines the life of F. F. Bruce one of the most significant Evangelical scholars of the 20th century. He does so with originality, insight and a grasp of the implications for the church today.

Evangelicals have often wrestled with two problems: the relation between academic theology and church life, and the quest for recognition of their status as credible interpreters of the Bible. Frederick Fyvie Bruce (1910-1990) was one of the most influential British biblical scholars of the twentieth century, and his career offers valuable insights into these issues, as well as shedding light on the ways in which Evangelicalism was changing from the 1950s onwards.

I hope to read it is this year. I may not always agree with Bruce, but I look forward to better understanding him as a person and perhaps how his scholarship developed.


  1. John, would be great to know what you think of Bruce's biography once you've read it. I've got a stack of books in my queue, so I'm not going to buy it right now. But, if you give it a good review, I might just get a copy.

  2. Coming out with Eerdmans Publishing this November...

  3. John:

    Did you also see Bruce's autobiography, In Retrospect. It has some interesting info.

    Best wishes,

    Russell Morton

  4. Russell,

    No, I did not. Perhaps I will post a review here after I read it.

  5. Would like to know what you disagree with? With regards to Mr Bruce that is. Specifically.

    1. Koheleth,

      I can't think of too many specifics off the top of my head, since they are not all that major. One example would be in his interpretation of 1 Thess 3:6 as containing a non-technical use of the Euangelizo. I noted in a recent post on the passage that I wonder if Paul is making a deliberate word play. He and I would also disagree on dating and historical accuracy. But I have the utmost respect for him and his work and still consult him frequently.