Thursday, August 13, 2015
Book Review - For the Love of God's Word
By Andreas J. Köstenberger and Richard D. Patterson
Köstenberger was academically influenced by Grant Osborne and D.A. Carson, two heavy-weights in the interpretation department; that fact alone makes one expect a quality book. But Köstenberger is a scholar of the first rank on his own merit and this book ably demonstrates that fact (I apologize for not knowing enough about the co-author Richard Patterson). Written to be used as a simple textbook on Biblical interpretation, the book contains not only the essentials, but the fundamentals on the art and science of interpretation.
The book is an abridged version of their more academic Invitation to Biblical Interpretation, but if you have never read the bigger tome, you will not think anything is missing from the abridgment. The authors have carefully distilled the fundamental content and made it more accessible. This is good news for readers that do not have much time but do need to hone in their hermeneutical skills.
Throughout the book there are shaded boxes with a synthesis of the chapters contents and these are very helpful. They will give you outlines of steps, definitions, arguments, procedures, etc. that you can refer back to when you are done reading the book. They will serve as an excellent refresher for years to come. They also will test you on whether you understood and learned what the authors intended for each chapter in question. The examples given throughout the book are very useful and capably illustrate the hermeneutical principles being studied. There is a useful glossary at the end of the book for the technical/academic jargon used in case one is not familiar enough with it.
For my taste, the layout of Scott and Hays’ Grasping God’s Word is more inviting for first time students; but I would recommend the present text as a handy reference to further explore certain types of hermeneutics or if in need of exegetical examples of proper interpretation processes.
Disclaimer: The book was received for free from Kregel Ministry books in exchange for an unbiased opinion.