Old Testament Introduction

Old Testament Introductions

Brevard S. Childs, Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture, Fortress, 1979. ***1/2
the classic canonical critical OT introduction;

R. Dillard and T. Longman, An Introduction to the Old Testament, Zondervan, 1994. ****
Reformed/evangelical perspective; literary, introductory value; the place to start.

Henry J. Flanders, People of the Covenant: An Introduction to the Hebrew Bible, Oxford University Press, 1996.

Rolland K. Harrison, Introduction to the Old Testament, Prince Press, 1998.
considered the standard evangelical OT introduction;

John H. Sailhamer, Introduction to the Old Testament: A Canonical Approach, Zondervan, 1995. ****
beginning/intermediate level; evangelical perspective; textual, hermeneutical, introductory value.

Hans Walter Wolff, The Old Testament: A Guide to its Writings, SPCK. 1974.
now dated

Old Testament History

John Bright, A History of Israel, Westminster, 1994.
fourth edition;

Eugene Merrill, Kingdom of Priests: A History of Old Testament Israel, Baker, 1997.
the standard evangelical treatment;

Old Testament Historiography

Zecharia Kallai, Biblical Historiography and Historical Geography: A Collection of Studies (Beiträge zur Erforschung des Alten Testaments und des
____ Antiken Judentums, 44), Peter Lang, 1998.

V. Philips Long, The Art of Biblical History (Foundations of Contemporary Interpretation, 5), Zondervan, 1994.
beginning level; Reformed/evangelical perspective; republished in Foundations of Contemporary Interpretation.

More Books of Interest

A. R. Millard, J. K. Hoffmeier, and D. W. Baker (eds.), Faith, Tradition, and History: Old Testament Historiography in Its Near Eastern
____ Context. Eisenbrauns, 1994. (compilation)
A. S. Van Der Woude (ed.), The World of the Old Testament, Eerdmans, 1989.

On Ancient Near East

D. Winton Thomas, Documents from Old Testament Times, Thomas Nelson, 1958.

Kenneth A. Kitchen, Ancient Orient and the Old Testament, Tyndale Press, 1966. ****
intermediate level; evangelical perspective; historical, comparative, theological value; somewhat outdated, but still the place to start.

________ The Bible In Its World: The Bible & Archaeology Today, Inter-Varsity, 1977. ***

William W. Hallo, et al (eds.), The Context of Scripture, Brill, 1997-.

Victor Matthews and Don Benjamin, Old Testament Parallels: Laws and Stories from the Ancient Near East, Paulist, 1997. ***
revised 2nd edition; beginning level; moderate; historical and comparative value; material is too scant; implications are often missed or mis-implied.

J. B. Pritchard (ed.), Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament. Princeton University Press, 1969-. ****
goes by the initials ANET; the primary source materials; technical, essential.

Tryggve N. Mettinger, No Graven Image: Israelite Aniconism in its Ancient Near Eastern Context (Coniectanea Biblica, Old Testament Series, 42),
____ Coronet Books, 1995.

see also

John H. Walton, et al (eds.), The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament, Inter Varsity, 2000. ****
evangelical compendium; well-written, accessible; Trempor Longman rightly calls this edition "a treasure of crucial information;"
essential reading for historical- social, -cultural, and -anthropological background.

and do not neglect

J. H. Charlesworth, Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, Doubleday, 1983.

Bible Atlases

Yohanan Aharoni, Michael Avi-Yonah, Anson F. Rainey, and Zeev Safrai (eds.), The Macmillan Bible Atlas, Macmillan, 1993.
J. Bimson and J. Kane, et al (eds.), New Bible Atlas, Inter Varsity, 1993.
J. B. Pritchard (ed.), Harper's Atlas of the Bible, Harper and Row, 1987.

On Old Testament Anthropology

Thomas W. Overholt, Cultural Anthropology and the Old Testament. Guides to Biblical Scholarship. Fortress, 1996.
Roland E. Clements (ed.), The World of Ancient Israel: Sociological, Anthropological and Political Perspectives, Cambridge, 1989.


Thomas W. Overholt, Cultural Anthropology and the Old Testament (Guides to Biblical Scholarship), Fortress, 1996.
Eric M. Meyers (ed.), The Oxford Encyclopedia of Archaeology in the Near East (5 vols.), Oxford University Press, 1997.
Amihai Mazar, Archaeology of the Land of the Bible: 10,000 - 586 B.C.E., Doubleday, 1992.
Kenneth A. Kitchen, The Bible in its World, Paternoster, 1977.
Ephraim Stern (ed.), The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land, Simon & Schuster, 1993. (four vols.)

(best to keep up with the journals in this rapidly changing field)