Reception History of the Bible

Reception HistoryA brief review of The Oxford Handbook of the Reception History of the Bible

A wide range of modern interpretations of the Bible is on display in Michael Lieb, Emma Mason, and Jonathan Roberts (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of the Reception History of the Bible. This large volume is somewhat uneven, often frustrating, occasionally quirky, but vastly stimulating.

Its 44 chapters cover the reception history of certain portions of the Bible (such as Genesis, Job, Psalms, John, and Revelation) followed by a wealth of more specialised studies, such as “The Bible and Anti-Semitism”, “Esther and Hitler”, “Ezekiel 1 and the Nation of Islam”, “Exodus in Latin America”, and “Gnostic Interpretations of Genesis.” There are also a range of personal chapters on the biblical understanding of, for instance, Dante, Bob Dylan, Samuel Wilberforce and Thomas Huxley, Handel, Gandhi, Kierkegaard, Karl Barth, and Joanna Southcott.

Vast amounts of further reading are suggested in a sumptuous volume that is not without its lighter moments and bizarre interludes.

This review first appeared in Churchman 128/2 (2014).

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