Discover: -How the springs at Hierapolis help us understand why Jesus described the church at Laodicea as 'lukewarm' -The background and circumstances of certificates of divorce in Judaism-How Jewish dietary laws provided a powerful metaphor for God's acceptance of the GentilesBrimming with lavish, full-color photos and graphics, the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary walks you verse by verse through all the books of the New Testament. It's like slipping on a set of glasses that lets you read the Bible through the eyes of a first-century reader! Discoveries await you that will snap the world of the New Testament into gripping immediacy. Things that seem mystifying, puzzling, or obscure will take on tremendous meaning when you view them in their ancient context. You'll deepen your understanding of the teachings of Jesus. You'll discover the close, sometimes startling interplay between God's kingdom and the practical affairs of the church. Best of all, you'll gain a deepened awareness of the Bible's relevance for your life.Written in a clear, engaging style, this beautiful set provides a new and accessible approach that more technical expository and exegetical commentaries don't offer. It features:-Commentary based on relevant papyri, inscriptions, archaeological discoveries, and studies of Judaism, Roman culture, Hellenism, and other features of the world of the New Testament-Hundreds of full-colour photographs, colour illustrations, and line drawings-Copious maps, charts, and timelines-Sidebar articles and insights-'Reflections' on the Bible's relevance for 21st-century living.