b
Texts from the time of the New Testament
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C. K. Barrett
The New Testament Background: Selected Documents
Harper Torchbooks, 1956.

This is pretty old, and I doubt it's even in print. There are more modern versions of the same thing, but I don't happen to have one. Typical things included here are Roman documents, inscriptions, philosophers, Jewish historians, and various apocalyptic literature. They help you see patterns that are replicated in the Bible.

Last updated 11/11/06; first posted 2000; © 2006 John P. Nordin