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Old Testament Theology: Approaches to Structure, Theme and Text Paperback – 1 Jan 1959

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About the Author

Walter Brueggemann is Professor Emeritus at Columbia Theological Seminary. He is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ and was a past president of the Society of Biblical Literature. His most recent books include Disruptive Grace: Reflections on God, Scripture, and the Church and Journey to the Common Good.

Patrick D. Miller is Charles T. Haley Professor Emeritus of Old Testament Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey. He is the author of numerous books, including "The Religion of Ancient Israel". He is coeditor of the Interpretation commentary series and the Westminster Bible Companion series. In 1998, he served as President of the Society of Biblical Literature. He was also editor of "Theology Today" for twenty years.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x96dcde10) out of 5 stars 5 reviews
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9711415c) out of 5 stars A Monumental Old Testament Theology 15 Sept. 2002
By Virgil Brown - Published on
Format: Paperback
There were two monumental Old Testament theologies translated from German into English in the early 1960's. One was Walter Eichrodt's _Theology of the Old Testament_ and the other, arguably the superior, was Gerhard von Rad's _Old Testament Theology_.
Using a keen sense of form criticism von Rad showed how the Old Testament grew out of the experiences of ancient Israel. Historical event was followed by layering of theological interpretation. These were arranged by ancient Israel in a cultic confession.
Von Rad noted that the destruction of the Hexateuchal framework made the discovery of the early history difficult. But the matter was very different if one took into consideration that the sequence of events conformed to a "canonical schema of a cultic nature."
The pre-Mosaic ancestors of ancient Israel were not always worshippers of Yahweh. Genesis mentions cults of the ancestors such as the God of Abraham, the Fear of Isaac, and the Strong one of Jacob. Confessional formulae of which Deuteronomy 25.6 is most important coalesced these diverse traditions into the historiography of the Old Testament.
This is the starting point of von Rad's _Old Testament Theology_.
This review refers to the 1962 edition of Gerhard von Rad's _Old Testament Theology: the Theology of israel's Historical Traditions_.
15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x96e73c54) out of 5 stars Helpful collection 7 Aug. 2000
By Mark McEntire - Published on
Format: Paperback
Until Brueggeman's Old Testament Theology was published in 1997, this was the largest dose one could find in one place. The articles in this collection were all previously published in journals and other collections, but tracking them all down would be a difficult task. Therefore, the volume is very worthwhile. Even in the light of his most recent publications it is still a useful collection for a couple of other reasons. First, these articles were produced over a period of a couple of decades, so the attentive reader can observe Brueggeman's biblical theology as it developed over his career. Second, many of the articles are sustained treatments of individual texts, the likes of which do not appear in his recent Old Testament Theology. Most importantly, these essays reveal the increasing impact of contemporary literary studies on Old Testament Theology. For all of these reasons this collection is a treasure and may be considered a prerequisite for reading Brueggeman's "Old Testament Theology: Testimony, Advocacy, and Dispute."
HASH(0x96e8d1c8) out of 5 stars Three Stars 16 Mar. 2016
By Harold King - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Higher criticism at its finest. It is a must read for serious confessional Christian pastors.
6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x97491438) out of 5 stars von Rad...not bad 31 Jan. 2000
By greg brown - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I have found this to be a very reliable resource to understanding the cultural background of the Old Testament. For me it gives a new, deeper meaning to the events of the Bible. It is clearly written, and a great book to have to begin your OT study...if you can find it.
7 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x96be709c) out of 5 stars Old Testament Theology becoming New ! 22 Feb. 2003
By Fred W Hood - Published on
Format: Paperback
In spite of another good review..., I cannot help myself from bragging on this great "Unfolding of an on-going conversation with this Jewish Book." Due to Prof Bruegge's repeated words that it's an amazingly complex Book...because the Jewish people are amazingly enigmatic, complicated people of history!
From Chap 4: Bodied Faith and Body Politic: "In older, seemingly better days the Bible spoke with a single voice concerning faith and morals... For over a century the dominance of historical-critical work has relativized the absolute voice of the Bible. His footnote, also uttered in Class: "The critique of historical-critism by religious conservatives, in my judgment is correct." Next is a surprise: "Historical criticism was not especially interested in theological interpretation!" (This is news to me.)
Before getting to Chap 4, I was struck by Bruegge's emphasis on, "The issue that Israel and Israel's God (and those who continue this line of reflection) must always face concerns pain..." He pursues this theme in the next two essays: The Embrace of Pain; The Rhetoric of Hurt & Hope: "What is it about the Old Testament that is so odd and disruptive and restless that refuses to behave itself...?" Soon after those utterances he explains this question, "that rhetorical world is odd and crucial because it mediates ethical reflection through 'disclosures of hurt and articulations of hope.' "
My favorite essays, also longest are 7, Old Testament Theology as a Particular Conversation; No 8, The Crisis and Promise of Presence in Israel. A favorite picture of his growing theology is an "on-going conversation" with the OT or other scholars... Eichrodt and von Rad. Plus, "the aniconic character of Israel's God implies more than an absence of images." He refers to the value of metaphors from such scholars as Sallie McFague. His favorite nouns besides conversation are speech, utterance, words of rhetorical questions. His opening prayers for each Class are filled with verbs like brood, command, confess, plead, praise, thank, yearn...also, often coupled in faith, generosity, love, pleasure, purity, silence, trust...evidence of his grouping in fives and sevens.
Since most of these essays have come from his years at Columbia, those who have studied there have watched his authentic, steady, consistent growth and mellowing into an ever-ready approachable Gentle-man! I would not have gotten so much out of this year's Old Testament Theology without his incredible, clearly-stated, expositions in related, on-going conversations... favoring an older student!
Retired Chaplain Fred W Hood
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