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4.4 out of 5 stars18
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 6 January 2007
This is a jewel of a book. Written in John Stott's beautifully lucid and clear style, it provides the reader with a simple, yet rich, overview of the Bible. Understanding the Bible explores the Scripture's historical and geographical context, its meaning and purpose, and its authority and inspiration from a thoughtful conservative position. While probably designed for newer Christians, reading it will repay all Christians and any interested readers with fresh insight and a marvelous breadth of scope. The book's greatest strength is Reverand Stott's rare ability to distil the Bible's central story with clarity without losing the sense of Scripture's richness or complexity. Highly recommended.
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on 13 November 2003
First time reading John Stott's book from having heard some references to him by reputable and trustworthy preachers (Chuck Swindoll, John MacArthur et al) and was very impressed picking up this book.
The book makes the bible understanding clear and distinctly identifies historical, the environmental factors not to be ignored during the readings of the OT, like agriculture being the most popular way of life, the proximal distances between the involved nations/kingdoms, culture, traditions and so on, which when at the back of one's mind in studying the bible, a fuller picture is built in the mind hence better understanding. Into the NT, and the same illustrative and expressive, symbolic languages used to describe events by Jesus and the apostles(also like in the OT), are explained to be cleared of misrepresentation by Stott. Good book all round, for all (non-)christians alike.
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on 3 June 2011
Think it's a great little book. It's easy to read and keeps you informed of the Bible's key dates with some great references to bible passages and what the various writers are quoted in saying.
I wanted to improve me knowledge of the bible and this - although not in one particular area - has helped gain an all round understanding. It's nice to read the authors opinion on subjects too.
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on 10 February 2013
An excellent commentary by many of the trusted teachers of a few years ago, all the contributors are all well known for their honest and bibicial writings. As a one volume commentary on the whole bible this book must stand as a 'must have'.
Excellent for any one who wants to study the bible and examine the background and context of the books of the bible.
Commentary based on the NIV.
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on 8 August 2009
I first read this book some many years ago. I found it then a most informative and valuable tool for 'unlocking' God's word. I have moved on to deeper works, but shall reorder a copy of this priceless gem: it is a useful companion on a long train-journey, commuting, or simply as a fascinating read on a warm (or cold!) afternoon. It will, I am certain, enrich you as it has me.
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on 28 October 2014
Higher than Excellent! John Stott writes extremely clearly about the Bible without simplifying it. I read a chapter a week to give me time to absorb what he has written. Each chapter takes me about three hours and it changes my day and week. This is in-depth knowledge and illumination about our Creator, God, and His guidance, compassion and truth towards us then and now. I know that when I finish reading this, I will want to go back and read it all over again with insight from the first reading. I bought The Bible Throughout the Year by John Stott at the same time with the intention of reading them together but I know I will find it much more useful to read The Bible Throughout the Year after reading Understanding the Bible. An example chapter is a chapter on the Old Testament. (There is also a complete chapter on the New Testament). The Old Testament is extremely complex but John Stott clarifies this with explanations of the people, their movements, their responses and reactions and God's relationship with them during their struggles and their fulfilling years. Trust and Faith. John Stott writes about this in a way that contemporary man can relate to and understand.
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on 6 September 2014
The book is very good, thou I am still having problems believing
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on 18 April 2012
A very useful addition to any Christian library. It is amazing to see how far some people come in their walk of faith without really grasping the point and purpose of the Holy Bible.
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on 1 April 2010
I found this book to be more of a critical analysis of the bible than an explanation as such which the title suggests. The title is too simplistic. This is a rather (simplified intellectual version maybe) of an intellectual work and not THAT accessible to everyone... That would've been perfect had I KNOWN the bible. I think you have to know quite a bit about it before reading this book. Don't presume as I wrongly did that this will be very very easy to understand and help you unravel the old testament for example. I found this harder to read than the bible itself! Still, if you have a good religious background you'll probably like it...
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on 10 January 2015
An excellent introduction to the bible for new Christians
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