This innovative textbook at long last provides an Old Testament survey for undergraduate students that goes beyond basic content. The book attempts to balance the literary, historical, and theological issues pertaining to each individual book and to the Old Testament as a whole. The main portion of the survey treats each book of the Old Testament in the order of the English canon. This information does not simply rehash the biblical material, but assumes that the Scriptures are being read alongside the survey. The book focuses its primary attention on the purpose and message of each book and attempts to show how the literary structure of each one has been used to accomplish the author's purpose. The survey also introduces readers to the issues of hermeneutics (general and special), history (Israelite and Near Eastern), archaeology, canon, geography, Old Testament theology (biblical and systematic), and critical methodologies. All these issues are dealt with in separate chapters at a basic introductory level that never allows the reader to lose sight, as it were, of the forest while wandering through the trees. In addressing critical issues of date and authorship, the survey avoids a polemical stance. Hill and Watson seek to depend on the evidence of the text rather than on presuppositions to substantiate their views. Their commitment to the authority of the biblical text results in a book that, while notably evangelical, is not always traditional. The authors approach the survey mindful of two complicating factors in Old Testament study. First, God's revelation did not come by way of the English language or through Western culture, and therefore we today have to work carefully to receive the message clearly. Second, even when we are listening, we have a tendency to be selective about what we hear or to try to make the message conform to our ideas. The solution is to allow the Bible to speak for itself. The informed reader will find much innovation here and a keen awareness of current scholarship relating to the Old Testament. Above all, this textbook will bring a new vigor and excitement to the Old Testament as readers learn to discover its story for themselves and see how to understand it as a substantial part of God's self-revelation to humankind. This survey is well illustrated with maps, charts, and photographs. Additional features are the questions for study and the annotated reading list at the end of each chapter.
The Pentateuch--Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy--are the vital first books in the Bible. understanding the scope, meaning, and events of these five books is integral to understanding the whole of Scripture that follows. Old Testament expert Herbert Wolf provides layreaders and scholars alike with a strong undergirding of understanding and knowledge in this introduction that reveals both the seriousness and excitement of the Pentateuch. Readers will find Adam, Abraham, Joseph, Moses and Joshua in these pages, as well as terrible sin and glorious forgiveness, bloody sacrifices and battles, deadly betrayal and life-giving hope. Wolf first addresses the overarching themes that flow through the Pentateuch, with special attention given to Moses as author of the five books. He then addresses each book specifically, covering topics such as purpose and scope, and literary structure. He tailors additional study to each specific book. This book contributes significantly to a clear, deep understanding of the Bible's first five books.
Sweeney's work on the first 39 chapters of the Book of Isaiah is part of The Forms of the Old Testament Literature series which aims to present, according to a standard outline and methodology, a form-critical analysis of every book and each unit in the Old Testament.
This well-written introduction to the method of literary criticism gives the reader an awareness and appreciation of the rich diversity of thought found in the Old Testament. The student is shown how to identify the elements of structure, style, form, language, and composition in the books of the Old Testament. Norman Habel demonstrates how literacy criticism works with examples which are familiar and well-suited for a beginner's level of study. The literary features of Genesis 1-9 are fully explored, then the author focuses on the importance of the Yahwist and priestly sources for the whole Pentateuch. This book's explanation of techniques used in the process of literary criticism will be valuable to both student and professor.
This volume studies how the literary elements in the Qur'an function in conveying its religious message effectively. It is divided into three parts. Part one includes studies of the whole Qur'an or large segments of it belonging to one historical period of its revelation; these studies concentrate on the analysis of its language, its style, its structural composition, its aesthetic characteristics, its rhetorical devices, its imagery, and the impact of these elements and their significance. Part two includes studies on individual suras of the Qur'an, each of which focuses on the sura's literary elements and how they produce meaning; each also explores the structure of this meaning and the coherence of its effect. Part three includes studies on Muslim appreciations of the literary aspects of the Qur'an in past generations and shows how modern linguistic, semantic, semiotic, and literary scholarship can add to their contributions.
This prodigious work offers a broad selection of essays that present Knierim's distinct method for the discipline of Old Testament studies. One subject deals with the implications of his method for New Testament studies.
Series: Pericope, 2 The Book of Ruth reads like a novel. Scholars agree on the literary virtuosity of its author, but are deeply divided about the way she or he has structured the work. For the first time ever, The Structure of the Book of Ruth makes use of hitherto neglected evidence from ancient Hebrew, Greek, Syriac and Latin manuscripts in an attempt to create a more objective basis for discussions about the book's structure. This type of structural analysis is a powerful new tool in the hands of Bible scholars. Structural irregularities appear to elucidate the redactional history of the Book of Ruth. Structural breaks and links appear to function as markers indicating a certain understanding of the text to the exclusion of other possibilities. The question of divine justice comes out as the central theme of the book. Is it justified to accuse God of injustice, as Naomi did? The time when this problem was most virulent was the exilic and post-exilic period. Naomi appears to stand for the old Zion, the embittered widow of Lamentations 1. Ruth is a personification of the new Zion, the bride whom her divine husband will marry again. The remarkable openness to an active role of foreigners and women in the restoration of Israel is a deliberate protest against the draconic measures of Ezra and Nehemiah against marriages with foreign women.