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Israel and the Nations: The History of Israel from the Exodus to the Fall of the Second Temple [Paperback]

F. F Bruce
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 14.47 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

31 Aug 1998
F. F. Bruce shapes the daunting complexities of Israel's history into straight prose that sparkles with clarity. This new edition, carefully revised by David F. Payne, includes new material and a revised bibliography.

Product details

  • Paperback: 270 pages
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press (31 Aug 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830815104
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830815104
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 15 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,030,243 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great overview of biblical history 9 Dec 2006
If you want a historical overview of the history of the people of Israel from the Exodus to the Fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. then this is for you. For those who know the writings of F.F.Bruce it will be no surprise that this is a scholarly evangelical treatment of the subject, which acknowledges and uses historical evidence from non-biblical sources as well as biblical ones. Because it was originally written in the 1960s David Payne has lightly updated the text.

If you want a lot of detail on any particular aspect of the history of Israel then the book will probably disappoint, but its brevity and its concentration on the big picture is its great strength. For the inter-testamental period a little more detail is included because this is the historical period with which most readers will be least familiar.

The book also includes some really useful appendices, giving lists of kings, high priests, governors and so on, as well as selected family trees.

It sheds a lot of historical light on the Bible for the general reader. Highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book 12 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Anything from F F Bruce is to be welcomed. This book gives an excellent overview of the history of Israel in the Old & New Testaments. As wel an excellent overview of the Inter-testament all period.
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Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Israel & The Nations - Solid History Well Told 21 Mar 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Israel & The Nations packs an incredible level of detail into a well flowing and very readable history. I highly recommend it for the Bible student or teacher who is seeking to have a clear chronological context for the events in the Scriptures. The authors' accounts are concise and fact-laden. The account of Nebuchadnezzar's defeat of Pharaoh Necho, the subsequent deportations of Israelis to Babylon, and Zedekiah's revolt is better told than all other the other reference books in my bookcase combined (and I have a lot of books). This is the overview history that I wish I had twenty years ago.
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An context for the Bible 29 Mar 2007
By Jason G - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Because the Bible has a spiritual point and tells a spiritual story, the context with which that story develops can seem obscure at times. Professor Bruce's effort, in Israel and the Nations, attempts to place most of the Old and New Testament within its regional political and cultural context in a very precise and clear prose style.

Bruce writes with the presupposition of the historicity of the miracles and supernatural interaction with the Hebrew people being real, but that is not his primary focus. His focus is to place the spiritual story within the larger story of the ancient near east. He does regard the the Bible to be a history source of the highest rank. The author makes no theological judgments of the events, but merely places them in time.

His story is remarkable when taken out of its familiarity: a large tribe of nomads arising from Egypt over 3500 years ago onto a cross-roads section of the Mediterranean coast, after various civil wars, economic collapses, and defeats by a string of neighboring powers, should be nothing more than a footnote to history, as much as the Hittite Empire or the Amorite. Instead, they changed the world, largely due to their struggle to keep and at times abandon their unique religious faith.

The first half of the book covers the period from the Egyptian exodus to the end of the prophets. This retelling of the history has a wonderful way of humanizing the events told in the Old Testament. The envies and strife spring from real tribal warfare, real economic crisises, and real political intrigue. The rise and fall of King Solomon and his descendants is an excellent example. Taking advantage to exploit natural resources, like copper and horses for chariots, his tribal empire grew; yet fell when tax burdens, forced labor, double-crossings of allies and enemies happened and raw nepotism and favoritism ensured the worst of combinations: weak and oppressive government, something not easily picked up by reading the scriptural narrative, but the elements are all there.

The value of Psalm 137, which tells of the joy of Judah's traditional enemy, Edom, rejoicing over their fall to the Babylonians in 587 BC has a greater ring to it when you understand the doom of the fall of Jerusalem and what that meant for relations to neighbors and what that said about the confidence of the Jewish people in years to come.

The last half of the book deals with what is known as the inter-testament period to the final fall of Jerusalem in AD 70 to the Romans and the Jewish diaspora that forever changed Judaism and his daughter faith Christianity. The exploits of Alexander the Great, his successor Greek rulers, the rise of Rome, and the Herodian dynasty are all told here from the perspective of the Jewish people and state. What readily becomes apparent is that the Jews were becoming more of a spiritual people and less of a nationalistic people, as the Greek influence after Alexander, spread the Jewish influence around the Mediterranean basin. In fact the first translation of the Bible out of its native tongue, the Septuagint, took place around 50 BC in the Jewish learning centers of Alexandria, Egypt.

This is an excellent book, not only because the story it tells is excellent, but because Dr. Bruce writes of it extremely well and concisely in under 250 pages. It would be a worthwhile read for students of the Bible.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Important reading 20 July 2006
By J. McAlees - Published on Amazon.com
This book fills an important gap in the period covered. While not as extensive as some histories of the period it binds together each section of history very well, showing how one event not just preceded the other but in most cases gave birth to it. Today is the product of yesterday is what this book demonstrates in a comprehensive way. Accordingly to understand the days in which our Lord lived this book is invaluable. A must read. F F Bruce is both reliable and academic without being cold and analytical.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific 2 Jan 2014
By busyinbville - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Learning the history of Israel and their interactions with other nations and peoples is exciting. It shows that the Bible is true.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great! 15 Jan 2013
By Daniel Roy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I should bought this book before my semester.
I highly recommend this book to the people that study Historical books in Bible.
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