We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more

After the New Testament: 100-300 C.E.

A Reader in Early Christianity

Second Edition

Edited by Bart D. Ehrman

Publication Date - 03 November 2014

ISBN: 9780195398922

576 pages
7-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches

In Stock

Renowned biblical scholar Bart D. Ehrman provides a wide range of primary texts from the second and third centuries of early Christianity


Revealing the rich diversity of the early Christian movement, After the New Testament: 100-300 CE: A Reader in Early Christianity, Second Edition, brings together an extensive selection of texts from the second and third centuries, both "orthodox" and "heterodox." Selections include the writings of the Apostolic Fathers, the writings of Nag Hammadi, early pseudepigrapha, martyrologies, anti-Jewish tractates, heresiologies, canon lists, church orders, liturgical texts, and theological treatises. Featuring large textual excerpts--entire documents wherever possible--concise introductions, and lucid, up-to-date translations, After the New Testament is ideal for courses in Early Christianity, Christian Origins, and Early Church History.

New to this Edition

  • Two new chapters: Chapter 10: "Text and Meaning: The Interpretation of Scripture in Early Christianity" and Chapter 14: "Women and Gender: Christianity in a Patriarchal World"
  • Almost twenty new selections, including the Gospel of Mary, the Gospel of Judas, and the correspondence between Jesus and Abgar
  • Approximately twenty-five updated and improved translations, many by Bart D. Ehrman
  • New subsections in Chapter 6 that distinguish between various types of Gnosticism
  • Updated lists of further readings at the end of each chapter

About the Author(s)

Bart D. Ehrman is James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has written or edited more than twenty-five books, including The Bible (2013), Forgery and Counterforgery (2013), The New Testament, Fifth Edition (2012), and The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, Second Edition (2011), all published by Oxford University Press.

Previous Publication Date(s)

October 1998


"This is simply the best available sourcebook of its kind."--Susan Harvey, Brown University

"Anyone who teaches a class on early Christianity needs access to a collection of primary sources that have a brief introduction to each author, a clear and recent English translation, and excerpts short enough to be useful in an undergraduate survey class. This book fills that need, and I have been extremely grateful for its existence."--Christine Sheparson, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

"I find After the New Testament to be very helpful and accessible. It is currently the best textbook available, since it offers a broad and rich selection of primary sources from early Christianity."--Charlotte Radler, Loyola Marymount University

Table of Contents

    1. General Introduction
    2. The Spread of Christianity: Early Christians and their Converts
    1. The Acts of John
    2. The Acts of Thomas
    3. Justin: Dialogue with Trypho
    3. The Attack on Christianity: Persecution and Martyrdom in the Early Church
    4. Pliny's Letter to Trajan
    5. The Letter of Ignatius to the Romans
    6. The Martyrdom of Polycarp
    7. The Letter of the Churches of Vienne and Lyons
    8. The Acts of the Scillitan Martyrs
    9. The Martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicitas
    4. The Defense of Christianity: Pagan Antagonists and Early Christian Apologists
    Pagan Assaults on Christianity
    10. Minucius Felix: Octavius
    11. Celsus
    12. Porphyry
    Christian Apologists
    13. Justin's First Apology
    14. Athenagoras: Plea Regarding the Christians
    15. The Letter to Diognetus
    16. Tertullian: Apology
    17. Origen: Against Celsus
    5. Anti-Judaic Polemic: The Opposition to Jews in Early Christianity
    18. The Epistle of Barnabas
    19. Justin: Dialogue with Trypho
    20. Melito of Sardis: "On the Passover"
    21. Tertullian: Answer to the Jews
    6. The Diversity of Early Christianity: Writings Later Deemed Heretical
    Jewish Christian Texts
    22. The Gospel to the Ebionites
    23. The "Letter of Peter to James" and Its "Reception"
    24. The Homilies of Clement
    Gnostic Christian Texts
    Sethian Texts
    25. The Secret Book of John
    26. The First Thought in Three Forms
    27. The Revelation of Adam
    Valentinian Texts
    28. The Gospel of Truth
    29. The Treatise on the Resurrection
    30. The Gospel of Philip
    Thomasine Texts
    31. The Hymn of the Pearl
    32. The Book of Thomas
    Other Gnostic Texts
    33. On the Origin of the World
    34. The Wisdom of Jesus Christ
    7. The Internal Conflicts of Christianity: Writings Against the "Heretics"
    Proto-Orthodox Heresiologists
    35. Irenaeus: Against the Heresies
    36. Tertullian: Prescription of the Heretics
    37. Tertullian: On the Flesh of Christ
    38. Tertullian: Against Praxeas
    "Gnostic" Heresiologists
    39. The Coptic Apocalypse of Peter
    40. The Second Treatise of the Great Seth
    8. "Apostolic" Writings Outside the Canon: Early Christian Apocrypha
    Apocryphal Gospels
    41. The Proto-Gospel of James
    42. The Infancy Gospel of Thomas
    43. The Gospel of Thomas
    44. The Gospel of Judas
    45. The Gospel of Peter
    46. The Gospel of Mary
    47. The Epistle of the Apostles
    Apocryphal Acts
    48. Acts of Thomas
    49. Acts of Peter
    50. Acts of Paul
    51. Acts of John
    Apocryphal Epistles
    52. The Letters of Abgar and Jesus
    53. Paul's Third Letter to the Corinthians
    54. Paul's Letter to the Laodiceans
    55. The Correspondence Between Paul and Seneca
    Apocryphal Apocalypses
    56. The Apocalypse of Peter
    57. The Apocalypse of Paul
    58. The Ascension of Isaiah
    9. The New Scriptures: Canonical Lists in Early Christianity
    59. The Muratorian Canon
    60. Irenaeus: Against the Heresies
    61. Origen of Alexandria
    62. Eusebius: Ecclesiastical History
    10. Text and Meaning: The Interpretation of Scripture in Early Christianity
    63. Ptolemy's Letter to Flora
    64. Irenaeus: Against the Heresies
    65. Tertullian: Prescription of the Heretics and Against Marcion
    66. Origen: Commentary on John
    67. Origen: On First Principles
    11. The Proclamation of the Word: Homilies in Early Christianity
    68. Second Clement
    69. Origen: Homilies on Luke
    70. Origen: Homilies on Genesis
    12. The Structure of Early Christianity: The Development of Church Offices
    71. First Clement
    72. The Didache
    73. The Letters of Ignatius to the Ephesians, Magnesians, and Smyrneans
    74. Hippolytus: The Apostolic Tradition
    75. The Didascalia
    76. Cyprian: On the Unity of the Church
    13. The Development of the Liturgy: Ritual Practices in Early Christianity
    77. The Didache
    78. Justin: The First Apology
    79. Tertullian: Apology
    80. Tertullian: On the Crown
    81. Hippolytus: The Apostolic Tradition
    82. The Didascalia
    14. Women and Gender: Christianity in a Patriarchal World
    83. The Acts of Thecla
    84. The Acts of Peter
    85. The Gospel of the Egyptians
    86. Irenaeus: Against the Heresies
    87. Clement of Alexandria: Miscellanies
    88. Tertullian: On the Dress of Women
    89. Women Montanist Prophets
    15. Leading the Upright Life: The Role of Ethics in Early Christianity
    90. The Didache
    91. Clement of Alexandria: "The Educator"
    92. Tertullian: To His Wife
    16. The Emergence of Orthodoxy: Theological Writings of Proto-Orthodox Christians
    93. Tertullian: Against Praxeas
    94. Origen: On First Principles
    95. Novatian: On the Trinity
    96. Dionysius of Rome: Letter to Dionysius of Alexandria