How to Read Genesis
Preaching Magazine's Year's Best Book for Preachers
Creation in six days
Woman from the side of man
"Sons of god" taking "daughters of men"
A massive disaster and an animal rescue boat of biblical proportions
Abraham, Sarah, Hagar and the ongoing saga of a dysfunctional family
These are just a few of the episodes that Genesis conjures up. But we miss the point if we focus on what seems strange to us. And we distort the message if we demand that this book answer questions that are strange to it. To read Genesis intelligently, we must consider the questions, the literature and the times in which Genesis was written.
In How to Read Genesis Tremper Longman III provides a welcome guide to reading and studying, understanding and savoring this panorama of beginnings--of both the world and of Israel. And importantly for Christian readers, we gain insight into how Genesis points to Christ and can be read in light of the gospel.
This book helped me think through some cirtical issues in new ways and helped me understand that many of the questions we want Genesis to answer aren't what the book is trying to address. More importantly, I felt that it gave me a handle on what Genesis was trying to communicate both to the original readers and me.
. . .is written in a way that allows any minister or teacher of the Word as well as any educated layperson to enter the world of contemporary Old Testament scholarship.
In a mere 175 pages, Longman considers the issues surrounding the reading of Genesis in an easily accessible manner. . . .good reading for any layman seeking to know more about this most pivotal text of the Bible.
Longman sheds fresh light on overly familiar stories in an interesting and readable manner. He presents competing theological understandings of Genesis fairly (in my opinion). Most importantly, he leads the reader into actually reading Genesis, after reading about it.
Longman does a good job of addressing critical arguments about author and date in an accessible way . . . Longman deserves praise for giving laymen the tools to engage the Bible more thoughtfully.
Part 1: Reading Genesis with a Strategy
1. Understanding the Book of "Beginnings"
Part II: Reading Genesis as Literature
2. Who Wrote Genesis?
3. The Shape of the Book of Genesis
Part III: Reading Genesis in Its Own World
4. Myth or History? Genesis and the Enuma Elish
5. Noah and Utnapishtim: Whose Flood Story Should We Trust?
6. Abraham and Nuzi: Patriarchal Customs in Their Cultural Context
Part IV: Reading Genesis as God's Story
7. The Primeval History: Genesis 1--11
8. The Patriarchal Narratives: Genesis 12--36
9. The Joseph Story: Genesis 37--50
Part V: Reading Genesis as Christians
10. The Christological Difference
Appendix: Commentaries on the Book of Genesis