My SBL Book Picks – Old and New Goodies

My SBL Book Picks – Old and New Goodies November 26, 2013

Let me say, I got a lot of new books before the conference (Kanagaraj’s John commentary, Moo’s Galatians, The Apocalyptic Paul, the Unrelenting God FS for Gaventa, Gospel Writing, Paul an the Faithfulness of God, Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels Reloaded…). But I am pleased with the small collection I picked up at SBL. Here are my book picks in no particular order.

New Books

When God Spoke Greek (T. Michael Law) – it came out in July and has earned a wide readership and much appreciation. Here is a bit about the book. The LXX fascinates me, so I will report back on this in due time.

Jesus as a Figure in History: How Modern Historians View the Man from Galilee (Mark Allan Powell). I bumped into Dr. Powell at the book stalls and we had a brief chat. He is such a wonderful person and capable scholar. The first edition was such a hit, and I never owned it. So glad to have the second edition. I particularly like having Powell’s 25-page summary of Wright’s JVG approach to Jesus and the Gospels.

Devotions on the Greek New Testament (ed. Scott Duvall and Verlyn Verbrugge) – this was a “fun” purchase. I think this book has two purposes: (1) to help those who learned Greek in seminary to “stick with it” with this devotional; (2) to promote the importance of the study of the Greek New Testament, since many institutions have moved away from serious language study. It will be fun to read chapters from my friends Roy Ciampa, Ben Witherington, Linda Belleville, Joey Dodson, Dave Matthewson, Lynn Cohick, Joel Willitts, George Guthrie, and a number of other NT scholars.

The Lost World of Scripture (John Walton and Brent Sandy) – this book is a contribution on the perennial “inerrancy” debate and it tries to help modern readers of Scripture see how we have our perspective on the nature of Scripture influenced (even distorted?) by our “book” culture (vs. the ancient oral culture). I have not read the book yet, but I think that is the gist.

He Has Shown You What is Good: Old Testament Justice Here and Now (H.G.M. Williamson). Williamson gave a series of lectures on the OT and justice in the “Trinity Lectures” in Singapore in 2011. They were published in 2012. I am quite interested in anything Biblical scholars do on the subject of social justice, and Dr. Williamson is an eminent OT scholar in any case. It is a short book, but I have already benefited from even the introduction.

Old Books

Paul for Everyone: Galatians and 1 Thessalonians (Tom Wright). I have a couple of Wright’s little commentaries, but I am teaching Galatians this spring and I am working on a commentary on 1-2 Thessalonians, so this is going to be helpful when I think about the substance of these Pauline letters.

1-2 Thessalonians (Victor Furnish). I have long admired Furnish’s work on theology and ethics in Paul. This commentary from Abingdon has been recommended to me by several people, so I am excited to have it in my library now.

The Story of Romans: A Narrative Defense of God’s Righteousness (A. Katherine Grieb). I have seen references to this work so many times, I have long felt it a shame that I hadn’t read it. It has made a big impact for being such a small book.

Still on my list

Roman Imperial Texts: A Sourcebook (Mark Reasoner) – this was too heavy for me to add to my collection of luggage weights, but I plan on ordering it.

What were your favorite book purchases?


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