Book Reviews

Using and Enjoying Biblical Greek: Reading the New Testament with Fluency and Devotion, by Rodney A. Whitacre

Learning Greek can be a fun and rewarding exercise. While the work of memorizing vocabulary and paradigms can be tedious, the payoff is worthwhile and worth the effort it takes. But what about after you spent those many months memorizing vocabulary, case endings, and principal parts? How do you keep from losing the hours you spent learning Greek? This is where Rodney Whitacre’s Using and Enjoying Biblical Greek: Reading the New Testament with Fluency and Devotion (UEBG) comes in handy. Consisting of seven chapters and 5 appendices, UEBG is the just the resource needed for both the beginner and the rusty student of Biblical Greek….

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The Oxford Handbook of Aristotle, edited by Christopher Shields

Among the philosophers, only Plato has made as large an impact as Aristotle. The latter a student of the former, Aristotle moved in slightly different directions and was not awarded the ownership of Plato’s academy. These two therefore made their own unique contributions, but they are inextricably tied together. In the Christian tradition, the two ancient giants, Augustine and Aquinas….

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The Blackwell Companion to Paul, ed. Stephen Westerholm

Moses and Paul: these two would likely be considered the two most prominent and influential biblical authors who have shaped world civilization through Christianity. (Jesus, of course, did not write anything.) As Westerholm’s Perspectives Old and New on Paul showed us, Paul shaped the Christian theological giants theologically more than any other biblical writer. It is therefore no surprise that Pauline studies continues to be (perhaps) the most active and saturated field in biblical studies today (I’ve never heard of any seminary short on Pauline scholars)….

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A Reader’s Greek New Testament, 3rd Edition, edited by Richard J. Goodrich and Albert L. Lukaszewski

What is the best way to keep up with your vocabulary? Flashcards are definitely a big help, but there’s no substitute for simply immersing yourself in a language day after day. Goodrich and Lukaszewski understand this. As they note in the introduction, if you were to learn all the vocab words Mounce requires in his Basics of Biblical Greek, you would still be far from being able to sit down in your armchair….

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The Routledge Handbook of Discourse Analysis, edited by James Paul Gee and Michael Handford

Several handbooks on discourse analysis have been published lately, including one by Bloomsbury and one by Wiley Blackwell (review coming soon). If I had to rank them, I would rank this Routledge handbook best for non- or beginning linguists, and the Wiley Blackwell volume the best for specialists, while the Bloomsbury edition tries to straddle both worlds but falls a bit shorter in breadth of topics….

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Dead Sea Scrolls Handbook, by Devorah Dimant and Donald Parry

This new handbook from Brill is a unique volume that you may or may not want in your library. Because texts are constantly being edited and readings are being better deciphered, the authors believe such a handbook is not superfluous, but supplements other textual editions already published (xix). There are no translations, commentaries, discussions of dating, or any other….

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Canaanite Religion According to the Liturgical Texts of Ugarit, 2nd English Revised Edition, by Gregorio del Olmo Lete

The Ugarit liturgical texts have received a good amount of attention since their discovery, often because of their significance for the Old Testament. Ugaritic liturgical texts contain word and deed, incantations and sacrifices. The Old Testament does as well, but they are more often separated, as we see cultic instructions in Leviticus 1-7 and praises and song in the psalms, for example. The importance of these texts makes Olmo Lete’s book significant for Ugaritic and OT scholars alike. His work was originally published with CDL Press in 1999 and reprinted in paperback by Eisenbrauns in 2004….

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Toward a Canon-Conscious Reading of the Bible: Exploring the History and Hermeneutics of the Canon, by Ched Spellman

Historically there has been a lamentable lack of attention among Evangelicals on the formation of the canon. This is unfortunate, writes Ched Spellman in the introduction of Toward a Canon-Conscious Reading of the Bible, because “one’s understanding of the story of how the Scriptures came to be has a direct impact on how God’s revelation is understood and how the Bible is interpreted” (1)….

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