Academic journal article Currents in Theology and Mission

The Book of Judges

Academic journal article Currents in Theology and Mission

The Book of Judges

Article excerpt

The Book of Judges. The New International Commentary on the Old Testament. By Barry G. Webb. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2012. ISBN: 978-0-8028-26282. xx and 555 pages. Cloth. $50.00.

Webb, an Australian Evangelical, has written a learned and sensitive interpretation of Judges. In his seventy-four page Introduction he reviews comprehensively and fairly the scholarly work on Judges during the last seventy years. That contribution alone will get readers up to speed.

He intends to present in his commentary the valid concerns of historical criticism, a new awareness of gender-related issues, and an emphasis on the need for self-awareness on the part of the reader on what he or she brings to the text and how this might influence his or her reading of it for good or ill (42).

In a section on Judges and Christian Scripture he addresses two areas where Judges appears to be most at odds with the Christian life as the New Testament describes it: its portrayal of women, and its justification of violence. He notes that there are three kinds of war in Judges: wars of conquest and occupation; wars of liberation; and civil war. …

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