Carl R. Holladay

Charles Howard Candler Professor of New Testament
Carl R. Holladay
Phone: 404.727.4017
    • PhD, University of Cambridge, 1975
    • ThM, Princeton Theological Seminary, 1970
    • STB, Abilene Christian University, 1969
    • BA, Abilene Christian University, 1965

    In addition to teaching at Candler since 1980, Dr. Carl R. Holladay is a senior fellow at the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory and a popular lecturer at colleges and universities around the world.

    Holladay’s research joins classical academic scholarship and professional application, focusing on Luke-Acts, Hellenistic Judaism (Judaism in the Greco-Roman world), and Christology. His scholarly contributions have focused on the ways in which the culture of the Hellenistic world shaped Jewish traditions of the Second Temple period, and through them the development of early Christianity. He has illuminated the ways in which Jewish authors of the Hellenistic period expressed and defended their tradition in literary and conceptual forms current in the Hellenistic environment. His edition of and commentary on the Greek fragments of Hellenistic Jewish authors is a foundational work for study of Jewish literature of the period, combining philological expertise and a sophisticated grasp of the literature and philosophy of the period.

    He is the sole author of nine books, including A Critical Introduction to the New Testament: Interpreting the Message and Meaning of Jesus Christ (Abingdon, 2005), which offers historical context as well as an orientation to religious, theological and ethical issues surrounding Jesus’ message, and is used extensively by seminaries and ministers. Holladay also co-authored or co-edited four books, including Biblical Exegesis: A Beginner's Handbook (Westminster John Knox, 1st ed., 1982), a widely used introductory text on exegetical methods, theory and practice, now in its third edition. His most recent book is Introduction to the New Testament: Reference Edition (Baylor, 2017), which roots each of the New Testament’s 27 writings in their historical, literary, and theological contexts.

    He has received several prestigious fellowships and professional honors, including a Fulbright Senior Scholar Award, a Luce Fellowship, and a Festschrift titled Scripture and Traditions: Essays on Early Judaism and Christianity in Honor of Carl R. Holladay (Brill, 2008). Holladay is a member of the Society for New Testament Studies and the Society of Biblical Literature. He was elected in 2017 to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation's oldest and most prestigious honorary societies and a leading center for independent policy research.

    An ordained minister in the Church of Christ, Holladay serves on editorial boards for multiple scholarly journals.

    Selected Publications

    • Faculty Publication
    • Faculty Publication
    • Faculty Publication


    Introduction to the New Testament: Reference Edition. Baylor University Press, 2017

    Acts: A Commentary. Westminster John Knox Press, 2016

    Co-editor,Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity. Collected Essays, 1959-2012, by Abraham J. Malherbe. Brill, 2013

    Co-author,Biblical Exegesis: A Beginner's Handbook, Third Edition. Westminster John Knox Press, 2007

    A Critical Introduction to the New Testament: Interpreting the Message and Meaning of Jesus Christ. Abingdon Press, 2005

    Co-author,Preaching Through the Christian Year (1992-94). Trinity Press International, 1992

    Co-author,Preaching the New Common Lectionary (1984-87). Abingdon Press, 1984

    The First Letter of Paul to the Corinthians. Abilene Christian University Press, 1984

    Fragments from Hellenistic Jewish Authors. Volume I: Historians (1983); Volume II: Poets (1989); Volume III: Aristobulus (1995); Volume IV: Orphica (1996). Society of Biblical Literature, 1983

    THEIOS ANER in Hellenistic Judaism. Society of Biblical Literature, 1977

    Selected Awards

    President of the Society of New Testament Studies, 2016-2018.

    Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2017.

    Presented a Festschrift entitled Scripture and Traditions: Essays on Early Judaism and Christianity in Honor of Carl R. Holladay

    Board of Trustees, Abilene Christian University, 2005-2008.

    Distinguished Alumni Award, Abilene Christian University

    Henry T. Luce, III, Fellow in Theology, Association of Theological Schools, 1999-2000.

    Fulbright Senior Scholar Award for research at Eberhard-Karls Universität in Tübingen, Germany, 1994-1995.

    Senior Faculty Fellowship, Yale University

    A. Whitney Griswold Faculty Research Grant, Yale University, 1976, 1979.

    F. J. A. Hort Memorial Fund Award, Cambridge University

    “Imagining the Future" - Fall Convocation Address, Cannon Chapel, August 28, 2014

    "The Church of the Spirit" - Carmichael-Walling Lectures, Abilene Christian University, November 15, 2013

    "Happiness and Faith: New Testament" - Candler School of Theology, October 1, 2010

    Selected Courses


    Paul’s Theology of Ministry

    The Acts of the Apostles

    Gospel of Mark

    Greek Exegesis of the NT: Epistolary Writings

    First Corinthians - English Exegesis

    Jewish Milieu of the New Testament