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Interpreting the Pauline Epistles
 
 

Interpreting the Pauline Epistles [Kindle Edition]

Thomas R. Schreiner

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Product Description

Product Description

Leading Pauline-studies expert Thomas Schreiner provides an updated guide to the exegesis of the New Testament epistles traditionally assigned to Paul. The first edition helped thousands of students dig deeper into studying the New Testament epistles. This new edition is revised throughout to account for changes in the field and to incorporate the author's maturing judgments. The book helps readers understand the nature of first-century letters, do textual criticism, investigate historical and introductory issues, probe theological context, and much more.

About the Author

Thomas R. Schreiner (Ph.D., Fuller Theological Seminary) is James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the author or editor of numerous books, including New Testament Theology; Magnifying God in Christ; Apostle of God's Glory in Christ; and Romans in the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2253 KB
  • Print Length: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Baker Academic; 2 edition (1 May 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007TV0SGO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #220,622 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Book 3 Jan 2007
By Terry Cook - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent resource for those interested in digging into the New Testament. It is a small book and not intended to be exhaustive but in its 167 pages of very readable print it covers a great deal. For example, chapter 5 covers "diagramming and conducting a grammatical analysis"; I love this chapter! In less than 20 pages Schreiner teaches nearly everything one might wish to know about understanding the sentence structure and function of the words in the sentence by building a "blueprint" of the sentence by dissecting and rebuilding it with "stick" diagrams.

On the other hand I got very little out of chapter 6 (the reason I did not give the book 5 stars). Its 30 pages are devoted to "tracing the argument" primarily through "arcing", a weak-sistered system of analysis that falls quite short of the system taught in chapter 5.

Each of its nine chapters has helpful references for the student who might want to further their studies in a particular area.

One caution though, the reader should have some basic understanding of ancient Greek or the book will be of diminished value.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Introduction to the Pauline Epistles 28 Dec 2010
By Philip Thompson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Thomas Schreiner's 167 page introduction to the Pauline Epistles is a book that the reviewer has turned to time and time again for its depth of wisdom and clarity of presentation. In a relatively brief book the author manages to summarize each of the necessary components for doing exegesis on the Pauline Epistles.

Schriener begins by explaining the nature of the Pauline Epistles. In doing so, Schriener argues against Deissmann's view that Paul's letters were merely reactions against specific problems in specific situations. Instead, the author argues that although the Pauline epistles were, in fact, occasional, they were far more than "merely private individual letters" (25); these epistles were rather highly structured documents including an opening, a body, and a closing. As each of these sections are dealt with individually the writer presents for the reader comparisons and contrasts between numerous Pauline epistles and the method in which these sections are utilized. Schriener then moves to analyze specific literary forms (including diatribe, parenesis, and hymns) that may or may not be used to some degree throughout the books in question. The first chapter ends with an extensive discussion of the occasional nature of these epistles.
The second chapter briefly highlights the challenges and blessings of textual criticism throughout the Pauline epistles. The author conducts three case studies and offers the student a paradigm for making text critical decisions. Chapter three reinforces the need for a "program of regular reading" (58) in order for the student to gain greater familiarity with the text of the Greek New Testament. The fourth chapter discusses historical and introductory issues that challenge students of the Pauline epistles. Schriener offers primary, secondary, dictionary and introductory sources that will help students from these endeavors.

Chapters five and six form the core of the book. In these chapters, Schriener presents a method to understand and logically structure New Testament epistles. Chapter five reviews basic sentence diagramming for use with Koine Greek. It is likely that this chapter will offer little to the student who has already learned sentence diagramming in either Greek or English; however, chapter six is likely to be quite different in this regard. In the view of the reviewer, chapter six is worth the price of the book in and of itself. One reviewer noted that the method of diagramming instructed in chapter six is somehow related to or inferior to the method demonstrated in chapter five; however, one must understand that these methods serve two entirely different purposes. The first method simply helps the student understand the structure of each clause. This second method, on the other hand, helps the students understand the relationship of one clause (or paragraph) to another. Once the student begins thinking and these terms, not merely in terms of simple sentence structure, he or she will begin to grasp the logical connections and structure of the Pauline epistles.

Chapter seven and eight look at lexical and theological studies. Schriener offers cautions and recommendations for quality lexical studies. In the 16 page section on theological studies, Schriener probes questions regarding contradictions and development in Pauline theology and offers the reader a list of advantages endangers of probing the theological context. Chapter nine discusses the concepts of meaning and significance. Essentially, once one knows what the text means, he or she must then explain how that text works (especially in 21st century culture).
Schriener concludes by reviewing each of the sections and offers a list of helpful commentaries for the student.

One of the drawbacks of this book is its brevity. It is unfortunate that the author did not have more space and time to devote to this important study of the Pauline epistles (a fault that is understandable and hardly makes the superior quality of the volume worth a one-star rank). A second initial concern is Schreiner's unqualified use and recommendation of liberal critical writers, theologians, and commentaries. This concern is somewhat offset by the fact that Schriener himself refutes the views held by many of these scholars in the work at hand. Some readers may find this quality to be a strength, but this reviewer finds it somewhat bothersome at times. Finally, in the view of the reviewer, Schriener may go too far in his views regarding the meaning and significance of the Pauline epistles. These three concerns do little to diminish the quality and helpfulness of the book. Students seeking a deeper knowledge of the Pauline epistles will doubtless return to this book as a powerful resource for interpreting the Pauline epistles.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Comments on this volume, its series, and other guides to exegesis 13 Sep 2006
By a voice of reason - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Unfortunately, I think the reviewer who gave this book a one-star rating was a bit confused about the purpose of the book. This volume is not intended to be a commentary; it is intended to help students of the Bible to interpret it for themselves. This book and the other volumes in the 'Guides to New Testament Exegesis' series are certainly good beginning points, but it would be good if new editions were printed as the current ones are becoming a bit dated. While the exegetical approaches remain sound, it is the bibliographies - which are useful when current - that need to be updated from time to time; that way these guides would also continue to be helpful in directing students to other important sources.

Those who intend to pursue serious exegesis have probably already invested in the standard, which is Gordon Fee's "New Testament Exegesis;" it is used at many seminaries. For those who want to advance both their Greek and exegetical skills, I recommend "Biblical Greek Exegesis" by George H. Guthrie and J. Scott Duvall.

For the average lay reader who wants to become more proficient at interpreting and understanding the Bible, without necessarily wanting to take an in-depth and scholarly exegetical approach, I recommend either (or both) of the following: "How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth" by Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart and "A Basic Guide to Interpreting the Bible" by Robert H. Stein.

Lastly, for those seeking good commentaries (like the unfortunate negative reviewer) and as a more up-to-date supplement to the bibliographies in the series of which "Interpreting the Pauline Epistles" is a part, I recommend D.A. Carson's "New Testament Commentary Survey," which is updated regularly; it is currently in its fifth edition, which was published in 2002, but a new, sixth edition is scheduled for release in January 2007.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From Beginner to Expert this is a GREAT Tool for any Exegete! 24 Feb 2006
By Thomas Winborn Jr. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Schreiner does a wonderful job of taking any student of biblical exegesis through the process of developing an accurate exegesis of any Pauline Epistle. His reliance on grammar clues and diagramming make this an extremely helpful book for theologians who wish to allow Scripture to speak for itself. If you are seeking to better understand Scripture...this book is a MUST!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 12 Oct 2011
By Jacob Sweeney - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Two summers in a row I spent about two weeks overseas, primarily in London. London has become one of my favorite cities and I jump at any chance to spend more time there. The second time I was there as a missionary helping to lay a foundation for future church planting. The first time, however, I was a visitor. I came as a student on a church history study tour. Though I had always known and read about London, this was the first time I had ever experienced it.

The thing that made that first trip to London was my tour guide. He was able to explain to us how to navigate the city; places to avoid and certain must-see sites. He told us which place to go if we were going to get tickets to the theater so we would get the best deal. In short, this was a city he knew and loved. His knowledge and love helped make him a reliable guide.

Tom Schreiner's Interpreting the Pauline Epistles is in it's second edition. It received a new cover and some light revision, but the meat it still the same. This book is a reliable and helpful guide to navigating the letters of Paul. If even the apostle Peter says that Paul says some hard things that are difficult to understand (2 Pet 3:16) then you know that you and I need some help. I can't think of a single better volume to help equip men and women to study the New Testament than this one.

He covers every area pertinent to subject and does it with ease and simplicity. Sometimes introductory books are written with so much jargon and technical detail that it makes it an arduous read with little profit. This is not one of those kinds of books. He explains every area of Pauline studies and every component their interpretation. Even with a BA in Theology and a MDiv in the works, I learned a lot from this book.

The most significant addition to this book that makes it stand out above any other is Schreiner's insistence upon doing theology from exegesis and preaching the Word. It seems many scholars and pastors do not want (or know how) to move from exegesis to theology. But that's the way it needs to be done. Doctrine must be built upon solid exegesis. The most important task in studying Paul's letters is studying them for proclamation. He insists on this often. That insistence is refreshing. For some scholars the ultimate goal of exegesis is precise, technical knowledge. Not for Schreiner. The ultimate goal is preaching God's Word to God's People so that God's work would be accomplished.

There's a reason this book is in its second edition. Books do not go into multiple editions for no reason. Schreiner is a scholar and master teacher. This book has already benefitted many. With a second edition it will continue to benefit many more. If you're a pastor, scholar, teacher or student, you need this book on your shelf.

NOTE: In accordance with the regulations of the Federal Trade Commission I would like to state that I received a complementary copy of the aforementioned text for the purposes of review. I was not required to furnish a positive review.
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