Biblical Theology

Review of Echoes of Exodus: Tracing a Biblical Motif by Bryan D. Estelle

Estelle, Bryan D. Echoes of Exodus: Tracing a Biblical Motif. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2018, pp. 351, $42, paperback. Bryan D. Estelle is professor of Old Testament at Westminster Seminary, California, where he has taught since 2000. Estelle received his doctorate from The Catholic University of America. He is the author of numerous essays, articles, and books, including Salvation through Judgement and Mercy: The Gospel According to Jonah. Bryan Estelle takes his readers on a tour de force of one of the Bible’s most significant themes, moving from Creation to the world-to-come in a sweeping survey of texts. On the surface, his book reflects a straight-forward yet comprehensive tracing of the biblical motif of exodus. In reality, Estelle has created a case study rich in methodological insight and hermeneutical acumen. In Chapter 1 he introduces the linguistic and philosophical backgrounds of intertextuality. He follows this discussion by stating his hermeneutical presuppositions and outlining his method for determining an allusion, including carefully clarifying what he means by typology. In chapter 2 Estelle identifies the cosmic-mountain ideology of the ancient Near East in the Creation account and demonstrates the similarities between creational realities and the Tabernacle. Estelle is clear that both…

Review of Psalms of the Faithful: Luther’s Early Reading of the Psalter in Canonical Context by Brian T. German

German, Brian T. Psalms of the Faithful: Luther’s Early Reading of the Psalter in Canonical Context. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2017, pp. 232, $24.99, paperback. In this work, Brian German presents a fresh perspective on the function of the faithful synagogue as an interpretive category within the Dictata super Psalterium, Martin Luther’s first lecture series through the Psalms in the years 1513-1515.  According to German, professor of theology at Concordia University Wisconsin and director of the Concordia Bible Institute, part of the importance of the Dictata for understanding the early Luther is the way in which it furnishes us with an almost daily account of his struggle to make sense of each passage unfolding before him.  This struggle, German points out, provides a window, not only into the interpretive development of the young Doctor, but into the specific theological principles adopted, abandoned, or merely altered throughout his journey.  As he says, “Luther, well informed of the sacred tradition but not yet sure how best to use it, set out on a journey through the Psalter to see where it would take him” (p. 10). German, an able guide throughout, begins by situating his discussion within the complex history of interpretation…

Review of Conquered Conquerors: Love and War in the Song of Songs by Danilo Verde
Book Reviews , Featured , Old Testament / March 22, 2023

Verde, Danilo. Conquered Conquerors: Love and War in the Song of Songs. Atlanta: SBL, 2020, pp. 271, $40, paperback. Danilo Verde is a postdoctoral associate with the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies in KU Leuven, Belgium, in addition to being a member of the Biblical Studies research group at the same university. In this revised edition of his dissertation that advances the frontiers of scholarship in Biblical Metaphor Studies, Verde provides readers with an insight into the military metaphors, similes and scenarios undergirding the Song of Songs’ depiction of human love, for which no extensive research using cognitive linguistics exists. Conceptual metaphor theory and blending theory were mainly employed by Verde to demonstrate that the root metaphor LOVE IS WAR undergirds the Song’s conceptualization of both the Song’s lovers and their love, marking the Song as both conceptually unitary and thematically coherent, despite its seeming fragmentary composition. In organizing his argument, Verde adduces four surface metaphors – WOMAN IS FORTIFIED CITY (pp. 45–102), MAN IS CONQUEROR (pp. 103–132), WOMAN IS CONQUEROR (pp. 133–168), and LOVE IS STRIFE (pp. 169–202) – which he claims serve not only to sustain the aforementioned root metaphor throughout…

Review of Making Christian History: Eusebius of Caesarea and His Readers by Michael J. Hollerich
Book Reviews , Church History , Featured / March 1, 2023

Hollerich, Michael J. Making Christian History: Eusebius of Caesarea and His Readers. Oakland, California: University of California Press, 2021, pp. 316, $95.00, hardback. Recent trends in early Christian studies have turned their attention toward questions of textuality: what does it mean to read a text, what choices informed an author’s inclusion or omission of details, and how has a text been received among its readers? Moreover, what does it mean to be a reader? These concerns rise to the surface rather quickly when engaging with Eusebius’s Ecclesiastical History. In Making Christian History, Michael Hollerich (Professor of Theology, University of St. Thomas) provides students of early Christian studies, patristics, and Christian historiography with a necessary ground-clearing of all things Ecclesiastical History—and, in doing so, makes a welcome contribution to the field writ large. To be clear, Hollerich does not aim to provide commentary on Eusebius’s work itself; instead, Hollerich begins with the work’s composition and analyzes the ways it has been both received and reappropriated since. In other words, Hollerich’s interest lies primarily in the social and cultural impacts Eusebius’s work had rather than trying to dissect the contents within the work itself. This caveat noted, Hollerich provides a helpful introduction…

Review of Together in Ministry: Women and Men in Flourishing Partnerships by Rob Dixon

Dixon, Rob. Together in Ministry: Women and Men in Flourishing Partnerships. Downers Grover, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2021, 176, $22, paperback. Rob Dixon is an associate regional ministry director with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA and senior fellow for gender partnership with the InterVarsity Institute. He is an adjunct professor at Fresno Pacific University and Fuller Theological Seminary and provides training on flourishing mixed-gender ministry partnerships for numerous organizations around the country. Together In Ministry is the culmination of Dixon’s twenty-seven years of ministry experience and four years of focused doctoral research in mixed-gender ministry partnerships. Dixon’s book “rests on the premise that women and men are designed to partner together in the work of fulfilling God’s mission on earth,” as laid out in the first two chapters of Genesis (p. 2). His thesis states that it is necessary and possible to embrace this Genesis picture in order to have flourishing mixed-gender ministry partnerships. Drawing on years of hands-on experience, research interviews, focus groups, and a survey of theology and church history, Dixon lays out a model for ministry partners that helps each person find a profound sense of personal satisfaction and accomplish their ministry goals (p. 17). His research has led him…

Call for Papers Ecclesiology
Articles , Featured , Uncategorized / February 1, 2023

JBTS Call for Papers 9.1 Ecclesiology The Journal of Biblical and Theological Studies, a peer-reviewed, open access journal, invites scholarly submissions for a forthcoming issue on Ecclesiology. JBTS is an interdenominational, broadly evangelical journal that seeks to provide high-level scholarship to both scholars and students. In this special issue, we seek a broad engagement with the Doctrine of the Church. Potential topics can range from the church’s identity, its mission and/or how the church relates to the state and society, its sacraments, its unity and diversity, catholicity, ecumenism, or practical concerns that today’s church encounters. For inquires, contributors may reach out to [email protected] Deadline for submission is 12/1/2023. Article guidelines can be found here. Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

JBTS 7.1 Full Issue
Articles , Featured , Old Testament / June 10, 2022

JBTS 7.1 Aramaic and the Bible Introduction to Aramaic and the Bible by Adam J. Howell The Value of Egyptian Aramaic for Biblical Studies by Collin Cornell “All Manner of Music:” The Author of Daniel 3 as Master Storyteller by H. A. Hopgood How Targum Onqelos Can Help Discern Between the Biblical Hebrew Frequentative and Preterital Imperfects by Richard McDonald Aramaic to Greek Transliterations in the Western Middle Aramaic by Andrew Messmer Targumic Forerunners: How Codex Colbertinus-Sarravianus (G) Demonstrates Targumic Tendencies by Matthew R. Miller Understanding the Paraclete Title: Any Help from the Targums? by John Ronning Genesis 3:15 in the New Testament and in the Pentateuchal Targums: Enmity as a Spiritual Conflict by Iosif J. Zhakevich Book Reviews Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin