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Martinez-DSScrolls-Trans_PB_Reprint07.qxdTwo weeks ago I opened a giveaway context for a slightly used copy of Florentino Garcia Martinez’s The Dead Sea Scrolls Translated: The Qumran Texts in English (Leiden; Grand Rapids. Mich.: Brill; Eerdmans, 1996). Since then there have been 29 comments. I placed the names in a spreadsheet, randomly sorted, the rolled a random number at random.org, and the winner is:

Jenna O

Looks like Jenna’s favorite scroll is the Damascus Document. Congrats, and please contact me via email (plong42 at gmail.com) with a shipping address and I will get this right out to you.

Thanks to everyone who participated, nice to see some people use at least a part of their summer to read the blogs!

 

Martinez-DSScrolls-Trans_PB_Reprint07.qxdI plan on continuing my series on the Enoch Literature after the weekend, but since this is a holiday weekend, I thought I would give away a book to celebrate.

I have an extra copy of Florentino Garcia Martinez’s The Dead Sea Scrolls Translated: The Qumran Texts in English (Leiden; Grand Rapids. Mich.: Brill; Eerdmans, 1996). This is a “barely used” paperback copy of the book and I purchased it myself.

The Eerdmans Website describes the book as:

“One of the world’s foremost experts on the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Qumran community that produced them provides an authoritative new English translation of the two hundred longest and most important nonbiblical Dead Sea Scrolls found at Qumran, along with an introduction to the history of the discovery and publication of each manuscript and the background necessary for placing each manuscript in its actual historical context.”

The Journal for the Study of the Old Testament said this volume is “the most useful of the available collections not merely for its completeness but for its complete list of Qumran MSS serving also as an index to the context. Absolutely invaluable!” If you do not have a copy of the Dead Sea Scrolls in English, this is the volume to have.

To enter, simply leave a comment on this thread with your name and your favorite Dead Sea Scroll. Or at least your name.

I will generate a winner at random and announce that winner in two weeks, on July 14. Good luck!

Baylor University Press is having a Grad Student Sale

shut_up_and_take_my_moneyThe sale itself runs from Friday, June 10th through Sunday, June 12th. Use the discount code “BJUN” to order books from their website at a 50% discount! The code applies to all books published in 2014 or earlier. Looks like it is time to stock up on the Baylor Handbook on the Greek Text series to survive your next Greek exegesis course.

I have my eye on the volume edited by Beverly Roberts Gaventa, Apocalyptic Paul: Cosmos and Anthropos in Romans 5-8, or  François Bovon’s The Acts of Philip: A New Translation.

It does not look like they are checking your seminary ID card at the door, but the sale is intended for Grad Students. Grab your fall syllabi and spend some quality time exploring the Baylor University Press website.

Remember, if you are in grad school you are supposed to spend all your money on books.

BaylorSale

Fellow-Grad-Students

Jesus Behaving BadlyI happen to have an extra copy of Mark L. Strauss, Jesus Behaving Badly (IVP 2015), so I thought I would pass it along to a Reading Acts reader. I reviewed the book in November, concluding that it is a readable introduction to some of the issues one faces when they begin to read the Gospels seriously. Strauss writes the book on a non-academic level with a great deal of humor as well as plenty of pop-culture references. Although academic, it is written with a pastor’s heart.

The book includes a few study questions which could be used as discussion starters for a small group Bible study. In fact, I think this book would make an excellent read for a small Bible Study group interested in going a bit deeper into who Jesus was than the typical curriculum normally goes. The book might make a good auxiliary textbook for a Gospels college course, supplementing a more thorough textbook. Strauss challenges his readers to think more deeply about who Jesus is by stripping away some of the pre-conceptions about Jesus passed along by tradition and the Church. The result is clearer view of who Jesus was and more importantly, why Jesus still matters to his disciples today.

To have a chance at winning these books, leave a comment suggesting other titles in a biblical “behaving badly” series IVP ought to consider. Or at the very least, just leave your name.

Do not forget to enter to win a copy of Logos Cloud Premium from Logos and Reading Acts. Logos is running that giveaway until January 17, 2016.

I will announce the winner of Jesus Behaving Badly on January 15, 2016.

Setting of the SermonTo celebrate the happiest time of the year (the beginning of school), I am going to give away a few books on Reading Acts. Two weeks ago, I gave Jake Bodet a copy of The World of the New Testament: Cultural, Social, and Historical Contexts (Grand Rapids. Mich.: Baker Academic, 2013) edited by Joel B. Green and Lee Martin McDonald. Last week I gave James Gray a new copy of Reading Luke (Zondervan, 2005).

For this week’s giveaway, I have a paperback copy of W. D. Davies, The Setting of the Sermon on the Mount (Cambridge, 1963). W. D. Davies is a scholar everyone should read. I read his Paul and Rabbinic Judaism in Bible College; it set the stage for Sanders’ Paul and Palestinian Judaism and the so-called New Perspective. His commentary on Matthew in the ICC series (with Dale Allison) is a standard. This book on the Sermon on the Mount book is older, but something of a classic. At well over 500 pages, this is a serious study of the Sermon and one that raises questions Davies works on for the rest of his career. He explores New Exodus and New Moses motifs, Jewish Messianic Expectations,  the setting/background of early Judaism, early Christianity and Jesus’ ministry.

If this book is so good, why am I giving it away? I live in Grand Rapids, Michigan. You have no idea how good this town is for buying books for biblical studies. I recently bought this at Baker Books in their incredible used section, and when I went to put it on the shelf I realized I had a hardback copy already. Once again, but decaying memory is your gain, I decided I would give it away on Reading Acts rather than return it.

Same rules as last week: Enter by leaving a comment answering this question:  The Sermon on the Mount, Q or no Q?

On Wednesday, September 16 I will randomly select one comment and ship the book out to the lucky winner. If you leave more than one comment, I will only count one comment per person for the contest.

Good Luck!

 

Reading LukeTo celebrate the happiest time of the year (the beginning of school), I am going to give away a few books on Reading Acts. I gave Jake Bodet (@JakeBodet) a copy of The World of the New Testament: Cultural, Social, and Historical Contexts (Grand Rapids. Mich.: Baker Academic, 2013) edited by Joel B. Green and Lee Martin McDonald.

For this week’s giveaway, I have a copy of Reading Luke:Interpretation, Reflection, Formation edited by Craig Bartholomew, Joel B. Green, and Anthony C. Thiselton (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 2005). This is the sixth volume coming from the Scripture and Hermeneutics Seminar and contains essays Luke and Acts from a wide range of scholars. Graham Stanton said the essays “offer fresh perspectives, especially on issues of method and interpretation. The essays are accessible to a wide readership, yet they are full of insights which will stimulate further reflection and research.”

This book is a brand new hardback and is my own copy. The only caveat is that the book has a different slip jacket than the picture above. I think it is the Paternoster (British) printing rather than the North American Zondervan printing. I cannot see any other differences.  I bought the book not realizing I already had the Zondervan edition, so my bad memory is your gain.

Same rules as last week: Enter by leaving a comment telling me which essay you will read first. On Tuesday September 8 I will randomly select one comment and ship the book out to the lucky winner. If you leave more than one comment, I will only count one comment per person for the contest.

Good Luck!

 

Table of Contents:

INTRODUCTION
The Hermeneutical Dynamics of ‘Reading Luke’ as Interpretation, Reflection, and Formation.
Anthony C. Thiselton

NARRATIVE, HISTORY, AND THEOLOGY
Learning Theological Interpretation from Luke.
Joel B. Green

The Purpose of Luke-Acts: Israel’s Story in the Context of the Roman Empire.
David Wenham

Preparing the Way of the Lord: Introducing and Interpreting Luke’s Narrative: A Response to David Wenham.
F. Scott Spencer

Reading Luke’s Gospel as Ancient Hellenistic Narrative: Luke’s Narrative Plan of Israel’s Suffering Messiah as God’s Saving Plan for the World.
David P. Moessner

LANGUAGE, PARABLES, AND LEVELS AND WAYS OF READING LUKE

Political and Eschatological Language in Luke.
I. Howard Marshall

The Role of Money and Possessions in the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11–32): A Test Case.
John Nolland

Reading Luke, Hearing Jesus, Understanding God: Reflection on Hermeneutical Issues in Response to John Nolland.
Stephen I. Wright

A Critical Examination of David Bosch’s Missional Reading of Luke.
Michael W. Goheen.

DISTINCTIVE THEOLOGICAL THEMES IN LUKE-ACTS

Luke and the Spirit: Renewing Theological Interpretation of Biblical Pneumatology.
Max Turner

Kingdom and Church in Luke-Acts From Davidic Christology to Kingdom Ecclesiology.
Scott W. Hahn

A Canonical Approach to Interpreting Luke. The Journey Motif as a Hermeneutical Key.
Charles H. H. Scobie

Prayer in/and the Drama of Redemption in Luke: Prayer and Exegetical Performance.
Craig G. Bartholomew and Robby Holt

ISSUES IN RECEPTION HISTORY AND RECEPTION THEORY

The Reception and Use of the Gospel of Luke to the Second Century.
Francois Bovon.

Looking for Luke in the Second Century: A Dialogue with Francois Bovon
Andrew Gregory

Illuminating Luke: The Third Gospel as Italian Renaissance and Baroque Painting.
Heidi J. Hornik and Mikeal C. Parsons

World of NTTo celebrate the happiest time of the year (the beginning of school), I am going to give away a few books on Reading Acts. First up is The World of the New Testament: Cultural, Social, and Historical Contexts (Grand Rapids. Mich.: Baker Academic, 2013) edited by Joel B. Green and Lee Martin McDonald. This 640-page hardback collects 44 essays on various background issues. Larry Hurtado said this is “a valuable volume, especially for students and general readers but also for scholars who want to catch up on any of the topics included.”  As you can see from the Table of  Contents below, there are some excellent writers in the volume.

This book is brand new and is my own copy. To enter, simply leave a comment on this thread and tell me which essay you would most likely to read first if you win the book. I will generate a winner at random and announce that winner on August 31. Good luck!

Table of Contents:

1. Introduction – Joel B. Green and Lee Martin McDonald
2. New Testament Chronology – Lee Martin McDonald

Part 1: Setting the Context: Exile and the Jewish Heritage
3. Exile – Nicholas Perrin
4. The Hasmoneans and the Hasmonean Era – Larry R. Helyer
5. The Herodian Dynasty – Everett Ferguson
6. Monotheism – Nathan MacDonald
7. The Scriptures and Scriptural Interpretation – Lidija Novakovic

Part 2: Setting the Context: Roman Hellenism
8. Greek Religion – Moyer V. Hubbard
9. The Imperial Cult – Nicholas Perrin
10. Greco-Roman Philosophical Schools – John T. Fitzgerald
11. Civic and Voluntary Associations in the Greco-Roman World – Michael S. Moore
12. Economics, Taxes, and Tithes – David J. Downs
13. Slaves and Slavery in the Roman World – S. Scott Bartchy
14. Women, Children, and Families in the Roman World – Lynn H. Cohick
15. Education in the Greco-Roman World – Ben Witherington III

Part 3: The Jewish People in the Context of Roman Hellenism
16. Temple and Priesthood – David Instone-Brewer
17. Jews and Samaritans – Lidija Novakovic
18. Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes – Michelle Lee-Barnewall
19. The Dead Sea Scrolls – C. D. Elledge
20. Prophetic Movements and Zealots – James D. G. Dunn
21. Apocalypticism – Larry R. Helyer
22. Synagogue and Sanhedrin – Kenneth D. Litwak
23. Jews in the Diaspora – David A. deSilva
24. Noncanonical Jewish Writings – Daniel M. Gurtner
25. Jewish Identity, Beliefs, and Practices – Archie T. Wright
26. Jewish Education – Kent L. Yinger
27. Healing and Health Care – Joel B. Green

Part 4: The Literary Context of Early Christianity
28. Reading, Writing, and Manuscripts – E. Randolph Richards
29. Pseudonymous Writings and the New Testament – Lee Martin McDonald
30. Literary Forms in the New Testament – Thomas E. Phillips
31. Homer and the New Testament – Thomas E. Phillips
32. Josephus and the New Testament – Michael F. Bird
33. Philo and the New Testament – Torrey Seland
34. Rabbinic Literature and the New Testament – Bruce Chilton
35. Other Early Christian Writings – Nicholas Perrin

Part 5: The Geographical Context of the New Testament
36. Jesus Research and Archeology – James H. Charlesworth
37. Egypt – John D. Wineland
38. Palestine – Thomas R. Hatina
39. Syria, Cilicia, and Cyprus – Mark Wilson
40. The Province and Cities of Asia – Paul Trebilco
41. Galatia – Mark Wilson
42. Macedonia – Gene L. Green
43. Achaia – Gene L. Green
44. Rome and Its Provinces – Thomas Hatina

Additional Resources
Money in the New Testament Era
Measurements in the New Testament Era

00_PICKWICK_Template Marianne Blickenstaff of Union Presbyterian Seminary reviewed my Jesus the Bridegroom for Review of Biblical Literature. I am very happy to have her review the book, especially since I read her book, ‘While the Bridegroom is with them’ : Marriage, Family, Gender and Violence in the Gospel of Matthew (London: T&T Clark, 2005) at the very beginning stages of my research on the Wedding Banquet Parable and was influenced by her reading of the Banquet Parable in Matthew 22. I appreciate her very kind review.

She summarizes the book and concludes “This study is a compelling counterargument to scholarship that claims the church, and  not Jesus himself, developed the bridegroom and wedding banquet themes. Long has provided well-researched and convincing evidence that Jesus could have operated within Second Temple Jewish interpretive conventions to develop Hebrew Bible themes in new
ways to elucidate the purpose of his ministry.”

The full title of the book is Jesus the Bridegroom: The Origin of the Eschatological Feast as a Wedding Banquet in the Synoptic Gospels and is an edited version of my PhD dissertation. As I was working on my dissertation, people would ask what I was writing on. I usually said “an intertextual study on messianic banquet imagery in the Synoptic Gospels.” After a moment of awkward silence, I clarified: “Jesus said the Kingdom of Heaven is like a Wedding Banquet – what’s up with that?” I considered that as a title for a (very) short time.

The book is now available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website. The book retails for $33, but Amazon and Wipf & Stock have it discounted. The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers. I have not seen a Kindle version yet. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.  If you do get the book, leave a nice review on Amazon, I would appreciate that.

Obviously I would love for you to buy a copy, but that is not always possible. Here’s how you can help get the word out for me:

Of course, I would really like to hear feedback from anyone who reads the book – feel free to send me an email to continue the discussion. Thanks!

Michael Bird - The Gospel of the LordIt is the time of year to be thankful, and I am thankful that I have an extra copy of Michael Bird’s new book, The Gospel of the Lord: How the Early Church Wrote the Story of Jesus (Eerdmans, 2014) to give away to some lucky reader of this blog. This is a new copy; mine is well read, marked and dog-eared by now. I will send a clean copy to a reader of this blog. There are no geographical limits here, although I am hoping someone from Antarctica does not win.

I plan on posted my review of the book in a few days, but for now let me say this is a nice introduction to several related topics at the foundation of Gospels studies, touching on related by diverse topics like Oral Tradition, Source Criticism, and the Genre of the Gospels. Each chapter has an excursus which digs a little deeper into some aspect of the chapter, so it is like getting two books in one. I highly recommend the book as an introduction to Synoptic Gospels study.

To have a chance at winning these books, leave a comment telling me what Famous Gospels Scholar you are most thankful for this Holiday season. Or at the very least, leave your name.  I will announce the winner picked at random on December 1.

jesot1The Journal for the Evangelical Study of the Old Testament 3.1 (2014) has several interesting articles, including:

  • Nathan Lovell, “The Shape Of Hope In The Book Of Kings: The Resolution Of Davidic Blessing And Mosaic Curse”
  • Matthew R. Akers“The Soteriological Development Of The ‘Arm Of The Lord’ Motif”
  • Silviu Tatu“Making Sense Of Melchizedek (Genesis 14:18-20)”
  • Andrew Witt “David, The ‘Ruler Of The Sons Of His Covenant’ (מושל בבני בריתו):  The Expansion Of Psalm 151 In 11QPsa”

The Journal also has a nice collection of book reviews (including two from me).

A PDF copy is free at the JESOT website, printed copies will be available through Wipf & Stock. The first two issues (Vol. 1) are available in the Logos library.

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My book Jesus the Bridegroom is now available from Amazon in paperback or Kindle

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