Book Review: Interpreting the Wisdom Books: An Exegetical Handbook

Interpreting the Wisdom Books: An Exegetical Handbook (Handbooks for Old Testament Exegesis)Interpreting the Wisdom Books: An Exegetical Handbook by Edward M. Curtis
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a helpful resource for the wisdom books of the Old Testament.

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Book Review: How to Read Proverbs

How to Read ProverbsHow to Read Proverbs by Tremper Longman III
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is well done and helpful in what it sets out to do. The title is truth in advertising as this book helps orient the reader of the book of Proverbs. It is not a deep dive study of wisdom literature, but that wasn’t the intention of the author. Issues like the overall organization and structural and thematic unity of the book are only touched on enough to whet your appetite. Longman doesn’t deal with intertextuality per se, but he does have a chapter for interaction between Proverbs and Job and Ecclesiastes, and a later mention of the New Testament book of James. The book particularly shines in giving attention to the fact that you must take any individual sayings in light of the whole book.

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Book Review: Living Life Backward: How Ecclesiastes Teaches us to Live in Light of the End

Living Life Backward: How Ecclesiastes Teaches Us to Live in Light of the EndLiving Life Backward: How Ecclesiastes Teaches Us to Live in Light of the End by David Gibson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is a commentary and study of Ecclesiastes. The author takes a practical approach to the book’s message of living life with the end of life in view. He focuses on that main theme and gives us a helpful and accessible look at the book of Ecclesiastes that Christians probably don’t pay enough attention to.

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Book Review: Gospel and Wisdom: Israel’s Wisdom Literature in the Christian Life

Gospel and Wisdom: Israel's Wisdom Literature in the Christian LifeGospel and Wisdom: Israel’s Wisdom Literature in the Christian Life by Graeme Goldsworthy
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a fine book in many ways. Goldsworthy helps us understand the relation of wisdom books to one another and to the Gospel. He asserts we cannot read wisdom literature in the Old Testament as if Jesus doesn’t exist, wasn’t made flesh, didn’t live, didn’t die, wasn’t resurrected, and hasn’t ascended to Heaven. There were a few bumps along the way relative to statements about the kingdom and some hints at over-realized eschatology.

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Book Review: The Beginning and End of Wisdom: Preaching Christ from the First and Last Chapters of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Job

The Beginning And End Of Wisdom: Preaching Christ From The First And Last Chapters Of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, And JobThe Beginning And End Of Wisdom: Preaching Christ From The First And Last Chapters Of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, And Job by Douglas Sean O’Donnell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Expository preaching in the wisdom books of the Old Testament is challenging. The wisdom books are often neglected, or used to offer self-help style tips. Preaching Christ from the wisdom books is rare. This book is like cold, fresh water in the desert. The book has seven chapters and two helpful appendices. The first six chapters are sermons–two each from Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Job. The seventh chapter breaks down those sermons and shows the how and why of the way they were put together.

The author gives us help on preaching Christ from the wisdom books in a concise and accessible way. O’Donnell gives a good, brief description of what preaching Christ means and explains the use of types in the Scripture. Every preacher needs to read and consider this book. It will help you.

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