"We offer this collection as a token of our affection and admiration of our friend and colleague James Weldon Thompson. . . . His studies of the letter to the Hebrews and of Paul in their intellectual contexts (especially Middle Platonism) have contributed significantly to the ongoing quest for placing the New Testament in its socio-intellectual setting. Although his publications in this area date back more than thirty years, his best work is occurring now, and we may anticipate path-breaking contributions ahead. His more recent work on preaching and pastoral care in Paul both situate the Apostle in his own world and, just as importantly, offer correctives of some contemporary ministerial practices and invitations for improvements. Since 1993 Thompson has served as the editor of Restoration Quarterly, a significant venue for research in biblical studies, church history (especially of the Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement), and contemporary theology. His more popular works make available to a lay audience thoughtful, well-informed, and spiritually rewarding interpretations of much of the New Testament.
"His achievements, however, do not end at the printing press. For more than thirty years, he has taught ministers and others at the Institute for Christian Studies (now Austin Graduate School of Theology) and Abilene Christian University. Students of the past and the present speak of him as a prepared, stimulating, and creative teacher unafraid of experimentation for a new generation of learners. At both institutions he also served as an administrator, first as President of ICS and then as Associate Dean of ACU's Graduate School of Theology. His colleagues respect his ability to enlist them for work as needed and otherwise to get out of their way, certainly a too rare set of skills in university administrators!"
--from the Preface