Recent Reference Books in Religion: A Guide for Students, Scholars Researchers, Buyers and Readers

By Lineberry, Loren D. | Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, March 2000 | Go to article overview

Recent Reference Books in Religion: A Guide for Students, Scholars Researchers, Buyers and Readers


Lineberry, Loren D., Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society


Recent Reference Books in Religion: A Guide far Students, Scholars, Researchers, Buyers and Readers. By William M. Johnston. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1996, 318 pp., n.p.

The principal aim of the Guide is to inform the researcher about the functions and goals of the wide variety of recent reference books in religion.

The Guide scrutinizes 318 major reference works published from 1970 through October 1995. The directory assesses reference books in the world's religions, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Asian religions, and alternative approaches to religion. The Guide devotes special attention to reference works in Christianity, including those treating ecumenism, Biblical studies (Bible dictionaries, commentaries and handbooks of interpretation), theology, spirituality, churches and denominations, and periods of church history. For example, the Guide acquaints readers with A Dictionary Of Biblical Interpretation, edited by R. J. Coggins and J. L. Houlden, which is a handbook of interpretation. For those interested in researching theological subjects, the Guide introduces Twentieth Century Religious Thought by John Macquarrie as a good point of entry into the field. For those interested in spirituality, works of interest include Christian Spirituality: The Essential Guide to the Most Influential Spiritual Writings of the Christian Tradition, edited by Frank Magill and Ian McGreal. While Englishlanguage works are emphasized, significant books in French and German are also noted, especially those with multilingual bibliographies.

The beauty of the Guide is its function as a tool to facilitate informed choice. "It helps the scholar to decide which works to consult. It helps the student to initiate research" (p. …

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