has he been solely dependent on historical details to shape his stories. On the positive side, details of Luke's accounts are confirmed elsewhere in the New Testament (2Cor 11:2; Rom 15:22-25) as well as in the writings of Josephus (1998:126).
Perhaps Fitzmyer's strongest qualification against the historicity of Acts centers on Luke's recounting of miracles and heavenly interventions. These are seen by Fitzmyer as "the most problematic narratives in Acts" because they ultimately involve a "philosophical judgment" of whether God supernaturally intervenes in human history (1998:125). He affirms that Luke apparently felt that the miraculous was a possibility because he included the incidents in his account. However . . .
the fact that Acts forms part of the inspired New Testament does not make the Lukan account, narrated in the past tense, necessarily historical. Neither church teaching nor theologians have ever maintained that the necessary formal effect of inspiration is historicity (1998:126).
Although the conservative school noted above would agree that inspiration in itself does not guarantee historicity, neither is it excluded. Marshall would affirm that the New Testament sets forth a strong relationship between faith and historicity.
"Our point is that the events which faith interprets as divine acts must be real, historical events, or otherwise they cannot be interpreted at all. The facts may be tested historically, but the ultimate decisions are matters of faith" It is faith which sees the resurrection as an act of God; it is faith which goes on to confess 'Jesus is Lord.' But, 'if Christ has not been raised . . . faith is in vain.'" (1971:52).
Although there is a continuing debate over the historicity of the Lukan accounts, there is no debate over the value of the theological contribution of Luke-Acts to our understanding of the New Testament. In fact, one of the benefits of the historical-critical study of Luke-Acts was to lead scholars to study the wonderful richness of the underlying theology. "Conzelmann and Haenchen asked for the theological significance of Luke's work as a whole, while downplaying the relevance of Acts as an historical account" (Verheyden 1999:25).
Others would agree that Acts is "much more" than the early history of the Christian Church (Fitzmyer 1998:47) and that it is "the highly innovating work of a theologian interpreting the Christian message for the situation of the Church of his time" (Verheyden 1999:25). Jervell calls Luke "the theologian of Scripture par excellence" (1984:122). Stronstad in his discussion