(Say the Jesus Creed morning and evening during Lent.)
One of the most mind-numbing as well as frustrating things about biblical studies is learning the “names” and “ideas” of the major interpreters. So, for instance, Augustine or Aquinas or Luther or Anselm or Cajetan or, and this gets us closer to the our days, William Rainey Harper or James Moffatt. I could go … but need not. Donald McKim has just given us a reference tool that will undoubtedly be a godsend for students — college and seminary — who are learning the ropes. The book is called Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters.
This is the month of books for me and this blog. I had stacks of book from SBL accumulating and I have now gotten through them, decided which ones just to shelve and which ones to bring to your attention, so this is the beginning of a series of books. I’m trying to think the last time I saw so many outstanding, useful books come across my desk at the same time, and I can’t think of any time better.
Appr 1100 pages, more than 200 in-depth articles, written by specialists in language that is readable and accessible, covering the history of the Church, … it’s all here. An almost 100 page set of studies covering the eras of interpretation prefaces the dictionary entries.
The articles cover the major contributions and ideas of each author; generous bibliographies complete the entries.
I recommend this book for all libraries, church and school, students (both college and seminary), and for pastors — esp if the pastor is committed to teaching his or her church to know and appreciate the history of the Church.
[This book is a greatly-expanded study of 1998.]