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Notice board: the Bible

23 October 2015

Irina Zatulovskaya

Mark in a new light: the cover image by Irina Zatulovskaya, whose illustrations of St Mark’s Gospel appear throughout Glad News from Mark: A translation of the Greek text by Mary Phil Korsak. In a foreword, the former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Williams describes this translation as "unforgettably vivid. . . Mark’s abruptness and urgency are brought out as in no other version I know", as well as the Evangelist’s careful craftsmanship (£22; 978-909-02-8567-2; available from www.amazon.co.uk). The translator explains her choices in a postscript

Mark in a new light: the cover image by Irina Zatulovskaya, whose illustrations of St Mark’s Gospel appear throughout Glad News from Mark: A translati...

MELISSA JACKSON moves away from stereotypes in Comedy and Feminist Interpretation of the Hebrew Bible: A subversive collaboration, and brings the two together in dialogue. She picks out nine specific points of contact where she believes reading texts as comedy can inform the feminist critique of scripture (OUP, £75 (£67.50); 978-0-19-965677-6).

The editors of Interpreting Deuteronomy, David Firth and Philip Johnston, seek to bridge the gap between basic introductions and specialised academic books. They take account of modern research, and the 11 essays cover topics from literary composition to genocide and Christian interpretation (Apollos, £19.99 (£18); 978-1-84474-597-5).

Thomas Mann, in The Book of the Former Prophets, takes a chapter for each book from Joshua to 2 Kings. He takes a literary-critical approach, looking at context, authorship, and editors, besides addressing big questions such as the relationship between God and human institutions, and the part played by divine Providence in human activity (James Clarke & Co., £30.50; 978-0-227-68010-0).

Jack Lundbom’s Jeremiah among the Prophets is a collection of essays for the general reader or starter student looking for an introduction to the prophet and his work. Each has a theme, and the approach follows the chapter order of the biblical book (James Clarke & Co., £17.50; 978-0-227-17407-4).

In his reading of Jeremiah, Andrew Shead hopes to make sense of its structure and thought processes. He offers an interpretation of the text as an expression of the doctrine of the word of God. While recognising that there are many other approaches, he hopes that his will help readers to understand the challenges and opportunities it brings. A Mouth Full of Fire: The Word of God in the words of Jeremiah is published by Apollos (£16.99 (£15.30); 978-1-84474-596-8).

What does the text say and what does it mean? These are the questions with which the authors of the Tyndale Old Testament Commentary series grapple. Andrew Hill addresses the work of the prophets Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi. This new series completely replaces the earlier one begun in the 1960s (IVP, £12.99 (£11.70); 978-1-84474-584-5).

Perspective Criticism: Point of view and evaluative guidance in biblical narrative by Gary Yamasaki sets out what this methodology means, and shows how it works using two case studies: one from the Old Testament, and one from the New. It is a way of helping to interpret a story where the author gives no explicit meaning to the actions of the characters involved (James Clarke & Co., £18.50; 978-0-227-17399-2).

Penelope Wilcock has written 100 Stand-Alone Bible Studies to be used in home groups. Twenty-five are on biblical characters, 20 on themes in the four Gospels, 15 on the Church’s year, 20 on the life of Jesus, and five on the law and prophets. The Bible passages are printed out, and each session provides commentary, questions, and a prayer (Monarch, £12.99 (£11.70); 978-0-85721-419-5).

Jaime Clark-Soles introduces, for the general reader, some of the debates that happen in academic circles and of which many Christians are unaware in Engaging the Word. She explains the arguments and explores their implications of areas such as historical Jesus studies, biblical interpretation, the Synoptic problem, and approaches to reading scripture (Westminster John Knox, £13.99 (£12.60); 978-0-664-23114-9).

Practice Interpretation is the story of the reception of biblical texts in the here and now. The first in a planned series of volumes using this method is Stilling the Storm: Contemporary responses to Mark 4.35-5.1, edited by John Vincent. There are two introductory chapters, followed by 11 others, each written by a different author, which show how the story has influenced them and their communities (Deo Publishing, £17.95; 978-1-90567-917-1). Acts in Practice, in the same series, looks at themes and specific texts and reflects on similar situations today (£18.95; 978-1-90567-928-7).

Journeying with Luke: Lectionary Year C offers an introduction to the Gospel, imaginative reflections, and pastoral and theological thoughts for each season of the Church’s year. The introduction is Paula Gooder’s; the imaginative material is written by Mark Pryce, and the rest by James Woodward (SPCK, £9.99 (£9); 981-0-281-05902-7).

In The Church Jesus Prayed For: A personal journey into John 17, Michael Cassidy analyses the vision of Jesus and its relationship to the Church of today. He addresses the context of Jesus’s prayer, and looks at each of ten marks he picks out from it, beginning with truth and ending with glory (Monarch, £12.99 (£11.70); 978-0-85721-330-3).

Colin Kruse’s Paul’s Letter to the Romans is in the Pillar New Testament Commentary series. Based on the Greek New Testament rather than an already published translation, this book is not for beginners, but those who wish to have a more detailed look at the biblical text, verse by verse (Apollos, £34.99 (£31.50); 978-1-84474-582-1).

The New Covenant Commentary Series is aimed at ministers and students, wishing to engage in the biblical texts from a contemporary global perspective. Lynn Cohick has written the volume Ephesians (Lutterworth Press, £15; 978-0-7188-9239-5)

In his foreword, Walter Breuggemann describes Called to Lead as a "manual on practical theology". Its authors, Anthony Robinson and Robert Wall, give an exegesis of 1 and 2 Timothy, broken up into sections, each of which also has an interpretation for church leaders of today (Wm B. Eerdmans/Alban, £18.99 (£17.10); 978-0-8028-6740-7).

The Perfect Saviour: Key themes in Hebrews is an attempt to bridge the gap between academic theology and time-pressed preachers. Jonathan Griffiths, the editor, has chosen eight themes that, he hopes, will enable them to get to grips with the epistle, its topics, and difficult questions. Contributors include David Peterson and Bruce Winter (IVP, £8.99 (£8.10); 978-1-84474-583-8).

Tom Wright’s For Everyone New Testament commentary series is accompanied by Bible-study guides, which may be used alongside or independently of it. James (981-0-281-06869-3) is written with Phyllis Le Peau; 1 & 2 Peter and Judah (981-0-281-06863-0) and The Letters of John (981-0-281-06861-6) are written with Dale and Sandy Larsen (SPCK, £4.99 (£4.50) each).

A large-print version (larger than normal, at any rate; the text is still relatively small) of the Holy Bible is now available in paperback, using the King James Version (Hendrickson Publishers/Alban, £7.99 (£7.20); 978-1-61970-001-7).

The Fire Bible: King James Version is described as "a study Bible for Spirit-led living". The text is accompanied by commentary-style notes and articles on themes written by Donald Stamps, with introductions to each biblical book by J. Wesley Adams (Hendrickson, £36.99 (£33.30); 978-1-59856-945-2).

Material from William Barclay’s New Testament commentary series The New Daily Study Bible has been picked to produce a small (60-page) book: Insights: Love: What the Bible tells us about Christian love. There is a foreword by John Miller (Saint Andrew Press, £7.99 (£7.20); 978-0-7152-0960-8).

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