I don’t do these posts often, just once in a while when what I receive is extraordinarily, beyond-the-norm good. Monday was one of those days – I came home to five packages and literally laughed aloud. I was giddy like a little kid on Christmas who didn’t know that it was Christmas. And it’s not just because of the quantity – I am very excited about the content of these books.
Publishers’ blurbs are below. Thanks to IVP Academic, Zondervan, Wipf & Stock, Kregel Academic, and Westminster John Knox for the review copies!
- An Introduction to the New Testament: History, Literature, Theology (M. Eugene Boring)
This thoroughly researched textbook from well-respected scholar M. Eugene Boring presents a user-friendly introduction to the New Testament books. Boring approaches the New Testament as a historical document, one that requires using a hands-on, critical method. Moreover, he asserts that the New Testament is the church’s book, in that it was written, selected, preserved, and transmitted by the church. Boring goes on to explore the historical foundation and formation of the New Testament within the context of pre-Christian Judaism and the world of Jesus and the early church. He then examines the individual books of the New Testament, providing helpful background information and methods for interpretation, and revealing the narrative substructure found within each of the Gospels and Letters.This volume includes helpful illustrations, charts, notes, and suggestions for further reading. Sections are laid out in a well-organized manner to help students navigate the content more easily.
- Invitation to Biblical Interpretation: Exploring the Hermeneutical Triad of History, Literature, and Theology (Andreas Kostenberger and Richard Patterson)
Bible scholars Andreas Köstenberger (NT) and Richard Patterson (OT) provide seminarians and upper-level collegians a textbook utilizing the “hermeneutical triad” method. This approach to interpretation is based on giving due consideration to both the historical setting and the literary context, as well the theological message. Working through the major genres of Scripture and showing how their method applies to each one, they provide interpretive examples to guide the student in proper exegesis. In addition to the examples, each chapter concludes with exercises and assignments. Also included is a helpful “Building a Biblical Studies Library” appendix.
- From Messiah to Preexistent Son (Aquila Lee)
How did the earliest Christians come to see Jesus as a divine and preexistent being alongside God? Aquila Lee proposes that the root of preexistent Son Christology is to be found in early Christian exegesis of the two messianic psalms (the catalyst) in the light of Jesus’s self-consciousness of divine sonship and divine mission (the foundation).
- What’s Best Next (Matt Perman)
Productivity isn’t just about getting more things done. It’s about getting the right things done—the things that count, make a difference, and move the world forward.In our current era of massive overload, this is harder than ever before. So how do you get more of the right things done without confusing mere activity for actual productivity?When we take God’s purposes into account, a revolutionary insight emerges. Surprisingly, we see that the way to be productive is to put others first—to make the welfare of other people our motive and criteria in determining what to do (what’s best next). As both the Scriptures and the best business thinkers show, generosity is the key to unlocking our productivity. It is also the key to finding meaning and fulfillment in our work.What’s Best Next offers a practical approach for improving your productivity in all areas of life. It will help you better understand:
- Why good works are not just rare and special things like going to Africa, but anything you do in faith even tying your shoes.
- How to create a mission statement for your life that actually works.
- How to delegate to people in a way that actually empowers them.
- How to overcome time killers like procrastination, interruptions, and multitasking by turning them around and making them work for you.
- How to process workflow efficiently and get your email inbox to zero every day.
- How your work and life can transform the world socially, economically, and spiritually, and connect to God’s global purposes.
By anchoring your understanding of productivity in God’s purposes and plan, What’s Best Next will give you a practical approach for increasing your effectiveness in everything you do.
- The Lost World of Scripture: Ancient Literary Culture and Biblical Authority (John Walton and D. Brent Sandy)
From John H. Walton, author of the bestselling Lost World of Genesis One, and D. Brent Sandy, author of Plowshares and Pruning Hooks, comes a detailed look at the origins of scriptural authority in ancient oral cultures and how they inform our understanding of the Old and New Testaments today.
Stemming from questions about scriptural inerrancy, inspiration and oral transmission of ideas, The Lost World of Scripture examines the process by which the Bible has come to be what it is today. From the reasons why specific words were used to convey certain ideas to how oral tradition impacted the transmission of biblical texts, the authors seek to uncover how these issues might affect our current doctrine on the authority of Scripture.
“In this book we are exploring ways God chose to reveal his word in light of discoveries about ancient literary culture,” write Walton and Sandy. “Our specific objective is to understand better how both the Old and New Testaments were spoken, written and passed on, especially with an eye to possible implications for the Bible’s inspiration and authority.”