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Great Reading for Lent, Wonderful Synthesis of Scriptures
on January 20, 2005
"A Father Who Keeps his Promises" is an excellent book for some one who wants to dive into scripture study for the first time, and for the more experienced scripture reader, who might want to broaden their scope of analysis. It analyzes the theme of the covenant between God and his people throughout the history of the Bible, beginning with Adam and ending with Jesus. The book is worth its price for Hahn's intrepretaiton of the culpability of Eve and Adam alone.
Obviously this is a lot of territory and time to cover. The book is an emphasis on themes, and does not analyze every minute detail or story behind the writing, or provide information about the writers. People searching for critical commentaries on the evolution of scripture as it was written should look elsewhere.
This book analyses how God progressively created covenants between himself and with an individual, then with families, then with a nation and finally with the world. It is a never-ending cyclical story of love, committment, reproach, forgiveness, and redemption. The book preaches love and hope.
Due to space constraints, everything in the Bible is not covered in thorough detail, but only the dominant main characters. However, nuances of the stories that involve the main characters are examined to significant depths, as well as typologies are occasioanlly stressed, to connect threads of thought in the New Testament or later parts of the Old Testament that are introduced, or prefigured in the Old Testament.
Hahn includes excperts from the essential passages to which he refers, so it is not necessary to have a Bible to grasp the main points of the text, but a Bible is an excellent reference to further investigate the nuances that Hahn highlights. I have been reading the Bible for years, but have been greatly enriched by Hahn's insight; particularly with the story of the fall from Eden and the trickery of Jacob over Esau.
Although Hahn is listed as a "Catholic Apologist," this book is a great resource for all Christians. I highly recommend it to any one who reads the scripture, the beginners and the experienced alike. It might also appeal to Jews who are curious to explore how Christians relate the New Covenant as an extension and evolution of Jewish traditions.