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Exploring the Old Testament: A Guide to the Prophets [Hardcover]

By Gordon McConville (Author) & J. Gordon McConville (Author)
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Item description for Exploring the Old Testament: A Guide to the Prophets by Gordon McConville & J. Gordon McConville...

The writings of the prophets of Israel make up over a quarter of the Old Testament. But perhaps no other portion of the Old Testament is more misunderstood today. "Prophecy" conjures up for many knotted enigmas, opaque oracles and terrifying visions of the future.
  • Who were the Old Testament prophets?
  • How were their sayings, sermons and oracles formed into books?
  • For whom were these books composed?
  • And what are the main themes of the prophets?
To read and understand the prophets today, you need a guide. You must understand their historical context, their artful use of language and their place within the chorus of Old Testament voices.J. Gordon McConville's informed, illuminating and interactive introduction to the prophets is an ideal starting place, helping you become familiar with the text and context of the prophets and their contributions to Scripture. Each chapter focuses on a specific prophetic book, including Lamenations and Daniel. The consistent chapter format will aid you in your study, including sections on date and destination, issues in critical interpretation, structure and outline, theological themes, rhetorical intention, place or function of the book within the canon, and suggestions for further reading. Other helpful features are an informative introductory chapter on the prophets of Israel, a general bibliography on the study of the prophets, and a variety of chronologies and maps.Exploring the Old Testament, Volume 4: A Guide to the Prophets stands alongside the other volumes in this series Old and New Testament introductions as a critically informed and theologically sensitive guide to the prophets of Israel and the literary masterpieces that go by their names.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: InterVarsity Press
Pages   300
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.5" Width: 7.2" Height: 0.8"
Weight:   1.85 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2003
Publisher   IVP-InterVarsity Press
ISBN  0830825541  
ISBN13  9780830825547  

Availability  0 units.

More About Gordon McConville & J. Gordon McConville

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Gordon McConville is professor of Old Testament theology at the University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham, England.

Gordon McConville has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Studies in Old Testament Biblical Theology

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Bible & Other Sacred Texts > Bible > Old Testament
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation > Old Testament
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > General
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Old Testament > Old Testament

Christian Product Categories
Books > Bible Study > Study Resources > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Exploring the Old Testament: A Guide to the Prophets?

Great for the beginner.  Dec 29, 2009
I liked the breakdown of this book with each prophet getting his own chapter. Each Chapter contains a brief history and setting as well as information about authorship, date and so on. There are also "Think about" and "Digging Deeper" segments in the book which focuses on certain themes individually thus allowing the reader to go deeper with his or her study instead of just reading the facts. The great advantage of this book is the further reading bibliography found at the back of each chapter which provides the reader with the opportunity to take his or her study of a specific prophet to a greater degree if he or she wishes.
Exploring the Old Testament: A guide to the Prophets  Dec 5, 2009
As a Reader in the Church of Scotland where my prime task is Worship leading is is a pleasure to have a book such as this that can give an easily accessible overview of the Prophets where their relevance and importance to much of the New Testament writings can be joined up.
In itself it is an interesting read and the further reading be they Commentaries or Other Books and Articles is very comprehensive. An excellent purchase for my needs.
Thank you.
helpful handbook to the prophets  Jul 15, 2009
Gordon McConville's book The Prophets is part of a series entitled "Exploring the Old Testament. This is Volume 4. It is broken into 17 chapters, one for each of the prophetic books. The longer books (such as Isaiah) have much longer chapters written about them then the shorter books (Lamentations or Obadiah). The initial introduction is lengthy and gives a good introduction to the work by answering a lot of general questions about their role within the nation and within the canon. It deals with the prophets as a general source of theology as well as their rhetorical intentions. It also deals with the nature of modern literary, form and redaction criticism from Wellhausen onward and points out some strengths and weaknesses of this school. Overall, he seems to have a higher view of the inspiration of scripture than Carolyn Sharp's OT Prophets for Today.

Each chapter deals with the book in five ways. First of all it gives some general modern literary criticism of the book and the redactionist theories of how the book came together. Secondly the chapter contains a sort of commentary where the book is broken down into smaller, logical sections and McConville gives a brief summary and commentary on these sections. Thirdly, the author deals with the theological themes of the book. I found this section the most helpful and enlightening to read.

Fourthly, McConville deals with the books' rhetorical intentions. This section deals with the book's intentions and effects upon different group of hearers such as the original hearers of the prophet as well as the significance of the book up the Israelite community after the prophet's death. For those prophets who prophesied judgment it answers the question, what did these prophesies mean pre- and post-judgment?

Lastly, the author deals with the book "in the Canon". I also enjoyed this part because it is really Biblical Theology proper. It deals with the book's place in the whole of Hebrew scripture and then in the whole of Christian scripture. Perhaps this section was too short, but it is connected in some ways with the third section. All in all, I liked the book and would recommend it to one studying the prophets.
References other commentators too much  Nov 25, 2008
This book has good information however the arthur referrences other commentators too much which is a destraction for the reader from the main points of the book. Also, this book needs to be more simplified...enough that even a 10 year old can understand it as a new Christian.
The Old Testament of the Bible is a major historical document  Jul 10, 2008
The Old Testament of the Bible is a major historical document from an era where not much history has been recorded. "Exploring the Old Testament: A Guide to the Prophets" is not a strictly Christian book looking to spread the gospel, but rather a text looking critically at the Bible within a historical context. Examining the roots of the prophets' books and their secular and theological contributions to the old world, "Exploring the Old Testament: A Guide to the Prophets" is highly recommended for community library theology collections.

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