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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
I bought this book to help me with preaching on the Psalms and have found it very useful. I was also intrigued by the problem of relating the book of Esther, especially the last few chapters, to our Christian lives today.
While I was disappointed to find there was not a single reference to Esther in the book, I have appreciated the way it makes you think through such issues as:
What is the relationship between the Old and New Testaments?
What is the central message of the bible?
How does each passage relate to the central message about? Christ? What does this mean to us as we seek to preach it?
The book has stimulated my thinking. It is one that would be worth reading a couple of times, and then consulting as you preach on particular biblical passages.
Goldsworthy has some interesting things to say about expository preaching, even sometimes using humour to get his message across.
A couple of the interesting things he says:
It is easy to preach about the exhortations to holy living in such a way that you ignore grace and bind yourself and your congregation with law again!
Preaching from the gospels must be done realising that the message Jesus preached to his first disciples needs to be nuanced in the light of his death, resurrection and ascension.
Goldsworthy explains these things much better than me!
Highly recommended.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on October 19, 2002
While many good books exist on preaching, many of which I have read, this one goes the extra mile. Goldsworthy's main premise is that the Christian Bible is the One Word Written of the One God about salvation in Jesus Christ. While indeed, we do need to be careful in how we approach the Old Testament within its own historical and literary context (in agreement with OT Theologians), Goldsworthy makes the important point that the apostolic testimony about Christ, from the Hebrew Scriptures, is the model that we have from the New Testament. There is a lengthy treatment of his understanding of Biblical Theology (similar to According to Plan). His Biblical Theology attempts to clearly see the continuity and discontinuity between the Covenants, while affirming the central subject matter of both: Jesus Christ. The second part of the book then puts a biblical theological approach to the Scriptures into practice. There are sections on HOW to preach the Law, the Psalms, the Prophets, Historical Narrative, etc. Interstingly, he even shows how Biblical Theology applied to preaching the New Testament must result in some changes in our use of the texts. There is something for everyone here: for the interested Bible study leader, some clear tips on how to understand the Bible; for the seminarian or pastor, a great theological resource as well as hands on help from an outstanding evangelical theologian.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on September 13, 2002
In seminary a professor warned fledgling preachers, "Never, ever preach the Old Testament through Christian eyes." Such nonsense can take the wind right out of a baby preacher's sails in a hurry. Goldsworthy eloquently and seamlessly draws together all Scripture into a coherent whole testifying to Jesus Christ -- typologically, prophetically, and as ultimate fulfillment. This is one of the best and most relevant books I have ever read as a pastor and preacher.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on July 7, 2005
Preaching the Whole Bible As Christian Scripture: The Application of Biblical Theology to Expository Preaching (Paperback)

by Graeme Goldsworthy

This book is very valuable for Christ-centered preaching. It is scholarly but is also a practical treatment for lay preachers and pastors. He speaks deeply about the need to have Biblical Theology influence our preaching. There is much here on hermeneutics and theology for preaching. He speaks much of the Kingdom of God and salvation history as part of our preaching. His diagrams and explanations for that would be very valuable to share with others. I wish I had read this in seminary.

He, without hesitation, demands that unless the work of Christ is not mentioned in a sermon then it is not a Christian sermon. He has a very balanced and deep understanding of the gospel for both the unbeliever and the believer. It is this preaching that should be part of every message. He warns about the danger of moralistic and legalistic preaching if Christ's work for us to obey is neglected.

He seems to understand the broad tendencies of preaching in our day and encourages and warns in appropriate ways. It is particularly helpful for those preaching from the OT. The book is divided into two sections. Basic Questions We Ask about Preaching and the Bible and The Practical Application of Biblical Theology to Preaching. There are several good examples of the practice he would like to cultivate in preachers.

He is an evangelical and he is reformed in his theology.

"while there is much in the Bible that is strictly speaking not the gospel, there is nothing in the Bible that can be truly understood apart from the gospel. ... All preaching, to be true to the biblical perspective, must in some sense be gospel preaching." p. 95

"All Themes Lead to Christ

In the introduction I posed the problem of how we can show the Christian significance of Old Testament texts without becoming predictable and repetitive. It would not appear that Paul's determination to know nothing among his hearers but Christ and him crucified led him into the trap of predictability. Of course, if by predictability we mean that people will come to expect every sermon to expound something of the glories of Christ, then let us by all means be predictable! Since there are inexhaustible riches in Christ, and the implication of these for our Christian existence are endless, I doubt very much that there is any need for a preacher to be boring and repetitive.

Why do I keep on emphasizing that we need to proceed with an eye to Christology? Is it possible to preach a Christian sermon without mentioning Jesus? I want to avoid simplistic answers here. Perhaps I can put it an other way: Why would you even want to try to preach a Christian sermon without mentioning Jesus? Is there anywhere else we can look in order to see God? To see true humanity? To see the meaning of anything in creation?" p. 115
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on February 17, 2005
Review by Rev. George van Popta

Goldsworthy's central thesis is that all texts in the whole Bible bear a discernible relationship to Christ and are primarily intended as a testimony to Christ. He endeavours to establish the place of biblical theology in preaching any sermon from both OT and NT. He is a very strong proponent of the redemptive-historical (called by him, "biblical-theological") approach to preaching. This is to be greatly appreciated.

In the first 100 pages, he answers basic questions such as: "What is the Bible?"; "What is preaching?"; "What kind of unity does the Bible have?"; "How does the Gospel function in the Bible?"; and "What is the structure of Biblical revelation?" Throughout this first part of the book, he strongly advocates the importance of the discipline of biblical theology.

The book becomes more interesting in part two where he deals with the practical application of Biblical theology to preaching. He offers chapters on how to preach from all the different genres (OT historical narrative; OT law; OT prophets; wisdom literature; Psalms; apocalyptic texts; Gospels; Acts and epistles). The preacher who wants to follow the biblical-theological (redemptive-historical) approach will find much help here. Valuably, Goldsworthy demonstrates his points with many helpful examples.

What makes this work distinctive is how the author insists that the redemptive-historical approach must be applied throughout the NT as well as the OT. The Dutch debate of the 1930s (which the author refers to) between the redemptive-historical and the exemplarist schools did not get much beyond discussing how to preach OT historical narrative. Goldsworthy, clearly advocating the redemptive-historical approach, demonstrates how this way is to be applied to all the genres, of both testaments. In this Goldsworthy has added some important words to the discussion.

Goldsworthy's insistence that the relationship of Christian living to the work of Christ be clearly understood is also important. The preacher should never expound Christian living (sanctification) apart from the gospel event. Sanctification is justification in action.

What is also to be appreciated is that Graeme Goldsworthy is seeking to bring this way of preaching into the evangelical world. Those who want truly to preach Christ stand to learn from this book.
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28 of 35 people found the following review helpful
In his book, Goldsworthy attempts to write a magnum opus on the topic of what it means for preaching to be distinctly "Christian." He thus begins with some basic subject matter, covering topics such as the composition and unity of the Testaments, the relationship between theology and preaching, the meaning of the "gospel," and even salvation-history. In the second half of his book, Goldsworthy telescopes in to focus specifically on the issue of theology's relationship with preaching. He thus proceeds to give something of a survey of the canonical literature and suggestions for how to demonstrate Jesus as "the key to understanding Scripture." (p. 249) Goldsworthy's concerns, however, are not merely textual; thus he concludes his book with an interesting and practical section on how to preach Biblical theology thematically.

While I sympathize with Goldsworthy's intentions for writing this book, I honestly came away from it with very mixed feelings. There are some points which are very commendable: he demonstrates a high view of Scripture and preaching, he has a Christ-centered theology, and, this is the book's greatest strength, he understands that good Biblical exposition cannot be divorced from good Biblical theology. The fact that he has taken such pains to attempt to define what a "Biblical theology" is and to demonstrate its necessary relationship to evangelical preaching can only be admired. Also, the fact that Goldsworthy demonstrates such a concern for practical application rather than theory alone also counts in the book's favor.

All that having been said, there were also some serious flaws in this book that must not go unnoticed - I will address each issue that caught my attention in order from least to most glaring.

The first problem occurs on pages 22-23, where Goldsworthy defends the unity of the Bible. He boldly states, "Put simply, I believe that the Bible gives me a single, accurate, and coherent picture of reality principally because Jesus tells me that it does." While I agree with his conclusion here, this is not much of an argument. Instead, he simply makes a mere dogmatic assertion which only serves to tell the reader why he believes that the Bible is a unity, but falls short of telling why others should believe that it is. His latter statements are somewhat better. On page 51, he says that, "the unity of the Bible is a matter of theological conviction and faith because of the testimony of Jesus and the nature of the Gospel. The unity of the Bible is not based on the fact that it is an anthology of religious writings, but on the fact that it is the one word of God about salvation through Christ." Thus he affirms rightly that the belief in the unity of Scripture is confessional. However, it would have added more credibility to his statement if he had taken some time to defend Scripture's unity more inductively rather than dogmatically.

Secondly, Goldsworthy makes some serious mistakes concerning the history of philosophy. His attributing the Modernist method of historical criticism to the Enlightenment is simply wrong (cf. p. 67). The fact is that the Enlightenment began primarily with European Christian humanist scholars in the 14th and 15th centuries who sought to recover the Classical arts and literature. It was from out of the humanist movement that the Protestant Reformation was born. Thus it was vastly a Christian movement. The historical criticism Goldsworthy is referring to did not actually gain sway in scholarly circles until the late 19th century, nearly 100 years after the end of the Enlightenment. He also says on page 13 that, "Postmodernism and popular relativism are expressions of ideological atheism that must be resisted." This statement would cause any astute philosopher of religion to cringe. The fact is, Postmodernism, itself a nebulous term, cannot rightly be equated with atheism, a philosophical position actually associated with Modernism. Rather, Postmodernism, if we are to use this confounding term, is more correctly associated with theistic existentialism or even religious pluralism, as far as philosophical underpinnings and a priori assumptions go.

The third problem concerns Goldsworthy's approach to laying out a coherent salvation-history. On page 104, he offers a diagram where he asserts that the period from Abraham to David as portrayed in the OT can be, "shown as definitive for the structure of redemption and the coming kingdom of God," while the period following David until the end of the OT is a "Negative salvation history" expressing "progressive decline." However, this seems a bit over-simplistic. What about the period of the Judges? Does that really qualify as "Positive salvation history?" Recognizing this weakness of his approach, Goldsworthy says that, "There is always the danger that these neat little diagrams will distort the very complex reality that they are intended to represent...We must constantly test their validity against the actual text of Scripture, and if necessary, adjust our understanding of the shape of revelation. [But] Some conceptualization is necessary if we are to preach the Old Testament as Christian Scripture." (pp. 108-109, brackets mine) Really? It seems to me that Goldsworthy ought to be more concerned about maintaining an integral, contextual approach to Scripture rather than trying to mutilate it by forcing it into a theological mold. His reason for singling out Abraham and David is because he believes that Matthew uses these two OT characters as a definitive salvation-history structure, "salvation history... has its high points in Abraham, David, and Christ." (p. 100) But, do the Gospels really provide us with a structure for heilsgeshichte? Not entirely. While Abraham and David are no doubt important figures in the OT and in salvation-history, it does not seem that Matthew is giving any sort of literary/theological structure in his genealogy. Rather, his point was simply to show Jesus as the fulfillment of OT prophecy.

The greatest fault of this book, sadly, has to do with Goldsworthy's noble attempt at providing a Christo-centric hermeneutic. His statement on page 122 is compelling. "The key question of interpretation is, `How does this text testify to Christ?' The evangelical preacher needs to resist the modern hijacking of hermeneutics by purely literary and linguistic interests that ignore the ultimate purpose of God's word, which is to proclaim Christ to a lost world." Simply put, his assertion is entirely amenable. Biblical exegesis is not complete until the selected passage is considered in the light of Good Friday and Easter. Jesus is God's perfect and final revelation of Himself to humanity (Hebrews 1). He is the sacrifice for our sins and the only way to the Father (John 3). Thus Christ is central to our understanding of who God is and how He relates to His people; and for any Bible study or sermon to be truly Christian, it cannot bypass or ignore this Good News. Thus said, my objection is not to Goldsworthy's assertions, but to his method.

Throughout the book, Goldsworthy uses as his hermeneutic the Emmaus Road incident in Luke 24 in order to demonstrate that Jesus is testified to by all Scripture (pp. 60-61; cf. p. 249). Thus he confidently makes statements like, "Moses writes of Jesus...The prophets write of Jesus...the psalms are about Jesus..." and others. However, this language is somewhat careless and misleading. The fact is that none of the OT writers were knowingly writing about Jesus of Nazareth. They each lived in different times and contexts than Jesus, thus He could not have been the subject of their writings (again, not knowingly). Rather, they were concerned about their own times and people. Thus Goldsworthy's method seems to blur the necessary distinctions between the OT and NT, and as a result it comes off as a reductionist approach that undermines the "progressive" nature of Biblical revelation.

What Goldsworthy fails to recognize is that there is a difference between the text of the Bible and its message which presents itself through progressive revelation. Fee and Stuart's distinctions of the three levels of Biblical narrative are helpful for this discussion :

1) Top level - God's universal plan worked out in Creation: "Key aspects of the plot at this top level are the initial creation itself; the fall of humanity; the power and ubiquity of sin; the need for redemption; and Christ's incarnation and sacrifice. This top level is often referred to as the `story of redemption' or `redemptive history.'"

2) Middle level - What happens with Israel OT / Church NT (the communal aspect).

3) Bottom level - "Here are found all the hundreds of individual narratives that make up the other two levels..."

Thus the Bottom and Middle narratives comprise the Top level, or salvation-history. Therefore interpretation is always done with individual contexts in mind. This approach seems to be far more helpful than Goldsworthy's, which is simply too quick to find Jesus hiding behind every bush and under every rock in the OT. In order to understand the OT correctly, we must first see it through the eyes of the original authors, without reading the NT into the OT. Only after this can Christology ever come into play. Thus it is important to remember that, while Jesus is the telos of Scripture, He is not found literally in every Scripture. Luke's recounting of the Emmaus Road incident was not intended to provide Christians with a hermeneutic for interpreting OT passages, but to show Christ as the fulfillment of all of God's promises.

While I found many weaknesses in this particular book, I am glad to have read through it because it presented an opportunity for me to critically examine the adequacy of my own hermeneutical approach to the Biblical text. Goldsworthy's insistence upon Christo-centric preaching was encouraging... and convicting. As an evangelical, I know that I must always seek to bring Jesus into the sermon somehow, regardless of whether or not I feel like I am being redundant. The Gospel is the "power of God for those who are being saved." (1 Cor 1:18) Jesus is the purpose behind the word of God. He is the focus, the center. Also, Goldsworthy's comments concerning Biblical theology were definitely the highlight of the book and have actually changed the way I view preaching entirely, giving me a more comprehensive method from which to draw. In the end, however, I felt like this book was trying to do too many things at once. That fact, coupled with the problems discussed above, prompts me to give it a grade of C+. There are certain sections that I am sure to revisit, however I doubt that I will ever read through it again in its entirety.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2006
There is probably no book which has had a bigger impact on my overall view of Scripture itself and the task of preaching the "whole counsel of God" than this one. Goldsworthy succeeds not only in introducing the concept of biblical theology and showing its relevance to the task of expositional preaching, but actually walks the reader through each genre of Scripture outlining principles and providing examples for rightly interpreting the text. The book is not simplistic and doesn't dodge difficult passages and hermeneutical challenges. But it does squarely ground everything in some basic convictions about the nature and purpose of biblical revelation and its relationship to Christ. My own understanding of Scripture was deeply enriched by this book. And in my vocation as an expositor of Scripture I was both encouraged and challenged. I simply cannot recommend this book more highly.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 10, 2009
In Preaching the Whole Bible as Christian Scripture, Graeme Goldworthy sets forth a very clear agenda, an agenda reflected in the title, and one that serves as the main thesis of the book from beginning to end:

"The aim of this book is to provide a handbook for preachers that will help them apply a consistently Christ-centered approach to their sermons."

Very simply put about what Goldsworthy means when he says `Christ-centered approach', Goldsworthy emphasizes that all of scripture and redemptive history testify and point to Jesus Christ, and therefore, "Jesus is the interpretive key to the Bible".

In essence, this book is intended to assist the preacher to begin his sermon preparation with the question: "How does this passage of Scripture, and consequently my sermon, testify to Christ?" And I must say, Goldsworthy definitely accomplishes this goal on a very practical level.

A few personal thoughts on the thesis:
Part one of the book deals with various presuppositions that we might bring to the table when sitting down to interpret scripture. Goldsworthy here argues for what is called a "Redemptive-Historical" or "thematic" approach to interpreting scripture. Biblical Theology, as it is termed (Google this term if you are unfamiliar with its definition), and the approach of Goldsworthy in this book, is to help the preacher understand how each part of scripture ultimately points to fulfillment in the person and work of Jesus Christ. That is, how certain themes run throughout the Old Testament into the New, and how these themes point to and culminate in the Person and Work of Christ. We understand the Old Testament through the lens of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and Biblical Theology traces `gospel' themes throughout all of scripture. Very important to recognizing these themes and properly interpreting scripture is the solid understanding of the point in redemptive history in which the text is given.

With that being said, this book is not a full defense of the Redemptive Historical method. This book is certainly a good explanation and guideline to the RH method, but it is certainly not a defense or full treatment of the subject. In fact, I found the author to be very dogmatic at times, making statements all throughout that he does not fully support. The book is riddled with argumentation that presupposes the tenants of Biblical Theology/the Redemptive Historical method that some readers might disagree with. However, I do not consider this a bad thing, for I agree with most of what Goldsworthy sets forth, how he goes about interpreting the text of scripture, and thus I found his wisdom and logic to be very edifying. But considering this, I would first recommend this book to those who already agree with the basic tenants of Biblical Theology/Redemptive Historical interpretation, or to those who fairly new to this biblical science of interpretation.

The second half of the book covers "The Practical Application of Biblical Theology to Preaching". Here Goldsworthy examines different `epochs' in scripture, such as the Old Testament Law or the Wisdom Literature, and he demonstrates how we might go about examining themes/pinpointing how they point to Christ and the gospel/put the BT/RH method into practice. I found this section to be a very helpful and practical guide as to how to preach and put into practice the method of examining scripture in light of Jesus Christ and His accomplished work.

This section is very easy to follow, with many helpful charts and diagrams to help explain and understand redemptive history. It is specifically written to the one who will be teaching and preaching on this subject, though I imagine that any layman would have no trouble following what Goldsworthy sets forth.

A few concerns I had:
I approached this book from a layman's perspective, as I have aimed this review. With this in mind, understanding that critiquing the theology and flow of argument was not my main objective, I must say that I did not find much wrong with this book. However, if I were to go a little deeper, I would like to further examine a few minor concerns:

-In the introduction Goldsworthy shares a little story highlighting how Christological preaching can easily become predictable, and that his goal in the book is to help keep us from being predictable/boring our audience with the exact same `Christ-centered' message week after week. This book certainly helps us in that goal, but I do not believe he goes far enough in this work to fully flesh it out.

-Goldsworthy expresses much concern on the `moralistic' preaching of our day and the emphasis on ethical imperatives divorced from the gospel, rightly so. He warns that exegetical, verse by verse preaching can sometimes separate the first part of an epistle (gospel) from the second part of an epistle (practical application). I highly applaud his concerns here, but without question he does not set forth a clear alternative to this problem to help preachers avoid this dichotomy. Are we to scrap verse by verse preaching and preach entire epistles instead (in one sermon)? Personally, I was left a little disheartened at times in that preparing to preach in Goldswothy's system is something that will require immense preparation, or life-long practice in order to preach a simple text of scripture in its context.

-As others have pointed out in reviews of this book, Goldsworthy sees Redemptive History as beginning with Abraham rather than in Genesis 3 with the promise of the Seed. His charts and diagrams reflect this error all throughout. Fleshing out the implications and ramifications of this view is beyond the scope of this review, but this is definitely a sticking point with me, and should be noted with caution.

-Furthermore, Goldsworthy's view on scripture division is Abraham to Solomon, Solomon to Exile, and Christ to Parousia. While I agree largely with his division, specifically in how he uses this to teach proper interpretation (properly considering the point in redemptive history which a text is given, and not jumping from that point directly to the modern reader while skipping how it ultimately points to Christ first), I believe Goldsworthy to be lacking in the area of traditional Reformed/Covenant theology and how the covenants provide the proper structure and support for biblical interpretation. I will have to read more of his works to form a full opinion, but I was uncomfortable at times with his divisions and neglect of traditional ways of understanding the divisions and covenants in scripture.

Conclusion:
Preaching the Whole Bible as Christian Scripture is a must have for any student of scripture. Even if you do not agree with everything Goldsworthy says, you will undoubtedly view scripture in a different light, and will have an immediate desire to re-read your bible and trace the Messianic/Gospel themes littered throughout. I would label this a great introduction to the Biblical Theology/Redemptive Historical hermeneutic, not only for this presentation, but for his practical outworking of this method found in the second half of the book.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on December 11, 2006
As a Pentecostal Pastor I have great appreciation for this work by a Reformed minister. Too often ministers in my circles either downplay the OT or they make it man centered instead of christ centered. The book strictly demands that all scripture be interpreted by the hermenutic of the gospel message, something I strongly agree with.

In the first half he develops his arguements. In the second he shows how this can be practically applied to different genres of Biblical writting.
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on December 31, 2008
In Preaching the Whole Bible as Christian Scripture, Graeme Goldworthy sets forth a very clear agenda, an agenda reflected in the title, and one that serves as the main thesis of the book from beginning to end:

"The aim of this book is to provide a handbook for preachers that will help them apply a consistently Christ-centered approach to their sermons."

Very simply put about what Goldsworthy means when he says `Christ-centered approach', Goldsworthy emphasizes that all of scripture and redemptive history testify and point to Jesus Christ, and therefore, "Jesus is the interpretive key to the Bible".

In essence, this book is intended to assist the preacher to begin his sermon preparation with the question: "How does this passage of Scripture, and consequently my sermon, testify to Christ?" And I must say, Goldsworthy definitely accomplishes this goal on a very practical level.

A few personal thoughts on the thesis:
Part one of the book deals with various presuppositions that we might bring to the table when sitting down to interpret scripture. Goldsworthy here argues for what is called a "Redemptive-Historical" or "thematic" approach to interpreting scripture. Biblical Theology, as it is termed (Google this term if you are unfamiliar with its definition), and the approach of Goldsworthy in this book, is to help the preacher understand how each part of scripture ultimately points to fulfillment in the person and work of Jesus Christ. That is, how certain themes run throughout the Old Testament into the New, and how these themes point to and culminate in the Person and Work of Christ. We understand the Old Testament through the lens of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and Biblical Theology traces `gospel' themes throughout all of scripture. Very important to recognizing these themes and properly interpreting scripture is the solid understanding of the point in redemptive history in which the text is given.

With that being said, this book is not a full defense of the Redemptive Historical method. This book is certainly a good explanation and guideline to the RH method, but it is certainly not a defense or full treatment of the subject. In fact, I found the author to be very dogmatic at times, making statements all throughout that he does not fully support. The book is riddled with argumentation that presupposes the tenants of Biblical Theology/the Redemptive Historical method that some readers might disagree with. However, I do not consider this a bad thing, for I agree with most of what Goldsworthy sets forth, how he goes about interpreting the text of scripture, and thus I found his wisdom and logic to be very edifying. But considering this, I would first recommend this book to those who already agree with the basic tenants of Biblical Theology/Redemptive Historical interpretation, or to those who fairly new to this biblical science of interpretation.

The second half of the book covers "The Practical Application of Biblical Theology to Preaching". Here Goldsworthy examines different `epochs' in scripture, such as the Old Testament Law or the Wisdom Literature, and he demonstrates how we might go about examining themes/pinpointing how they point to Christ and the gospel/put the BT/RH method into practice. I found this section to be a very helpful and practical guide as to how to preach and put into practice the method of examining scripture in light of Jesus Christ and His accomplished work.

This section is very easy to follow, with many helpful charts and diagrams to help explain and understand redemptive history. It is specifically written to the one who will be teaching and preaching on this subject, though I imagine that any layman would have no trouble following what Goldsworthy sets forth.

A few concerns I had:
I approached this book from a layman's perspective, as I have aimed this review. With this in mind, understanding that critiquing the theology and flow of argument was not my main objective, I must say that I did not find much wrong with this book. However, if I were to go a little deeper, I would like to further examine a few minor concerns:

-In the introduction Goldsworthy shares a little story highlighting how Christological preaching can easily become predictable, and that his goal in the book is to help keep us from being predictable/boring our audience with the exact same `Christ-centered' message week after week. This book certainly helps us in that goal, but I do not believe he goes far enough in this work to fully flesh it out.

-Goldsworthy expresses much concern on the `moralistic' preaching of our day and the emphasis on ethical imperatives divorced from the gospel, rightly so. He warns that exegetical, verse by verse preaching can sometimes separate the first part of an epistle (gospel) from the second part of an epistle (practical application). I highly applaud his concerns here, but without question he does not set forth a clear alternative to this problem to help preachers avoid this dichotomy. Are we to scrap verse by verse preaching and preach entire epistles instead (in one sermon)? Personally, I was left a little disheartened at times in that preparing to preach in Goldswothy's system is something that will require immense preparation, or life-long practice in order to preach a simple text of scripture in its context.

-As others have pointed out in reviews of this book, Goldsworthy sees Redemptive History as beginning with Abraham rather than in Genesis 3 with the promise of the Seed. His charts and diagrams reflect this error all throughout. Fleshing out the implications and ramifications of this view is beyond the scope of this review, but this is definitely a sticking point with me, and should be noted with caution.

-Furthermore, Goldsworthy's view on scripture division is Abraham to Solomon, Solomon to Exile, and Christ to Parousia. While I agree largely with his division, specifically in how he uses this to teach proper interpretation (properly considering the point in redemptive history which a text is given, and not jumping from that point directly to the modern reader while skipping how it ultimately points to Christ first), I believe Goldsworthy to be lacking in the area of traditional Reformed/Covenant theology and how the covenants provide the proper structure and support for biblical interpretation. I will have to read more of his works to form a full opinion, but I was uncomfortable at times with his divisions and neglect of traditional ways of understanding the divisions and covenants in scripture.

Conclusion:
Preaching the Whole Bible as Christian Scripture is a must have for any student of scripture. Even if you do not agree with everything Goldsworthy says, you will undoubtedly view scripture in a different light, and will have an immediate desire to re-read your bible and trace the Messianic/Gospel themes littered throughout. I would label this a great introduction to the Biblical Theology/Redemptive Historical hermeneutic, not only for this presentation, but for his practical outworking of this method found in the second half of the book.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
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