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A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results Paperback – March 9, 2006


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A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results + A Guide to Biblical Hebrew Syntax + From Exegesis to Exposition: A Practical Guide to Using Biblical Hebrew
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 334 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Academic (March 9, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830827315
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830827312
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #225,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Wegner has provided teachers and students with a clearly written and wonderfully illustrated introduction to the practice of textual criticism of the entire Bible. (JETS, November 2007)

This inexpensive book can be read with profit by student and specialist alike. Its particular strengths are that it treats both OT and NT and that the text is accompanied by more than one hundred illustrations of various kinds that help to bring the history of the discipline alive for the reader. I read through the book with the same excitement that I have when reading a good detective novel! (Claude E. Cox, The Catholic Biblical Quarterly 69, 2007)

An exceptional resource presenting the topic will well-grounded research, unambiguous style, an exceptional glossary and a thorough index. [Wegner] covers the vastly different fields of OT and NT textual criticism and does an admirable job presenting difficult issues in an understandable fashion. . . . Overall, the work is a welcome addition and will prove to be a valuable asset for unfolding the mysteries of textual criticism. (Darin M. Wood, Southwestern Journal of Theology, Vol. 47 (2))

"No introductory textbook to textual criticism of the Bible measures up to A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible. It uniquely combines Old Testament and New Testament textual criticism into one handy, delightfully illustrated volume. Paul Wegner writes for students, successfully guiding them through the text's long and complex journey by his clear style, objectivity and arresting photographs. General readers of the Bible will appreciate this introduction to the textual notes in their Bibles." (Bruce K. Waltke, Professor of Old Testament, Reformed Theological Seminary, and Emeritus Professor of Old Testament, Regent College)

"Here, at last, is a well-written, succinctly stated, wisely selected history and wonderfully illustrated textual criticism guide that covers both testaments in one volume. Where others have often made this science sound arcane and obtuse, Paul Wegner has skillfully described textual criticism in plain but ample and interesting ways. I highly recommend it to all serious Bible students, but especially to seminary faculty who must juggle book budgets and who up to now have had to order a separate text in this area for each testament." (Walter C. Kaiser Jr., President and Colman M. Mockler Distinguished Professor of Old Testament, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary)

About the Author

Paul D. Wegner (Ph.D., Kings College, University of London) is a professor of Old Testament with a specialty in the study of Isaiah. He taught at Phoenix Seminary for eleven years and, before that, at Moody Bible Institute for nearly thirteen years. He is the author of A Student´s Guide to Textual Criticism: Its History, Methods, and Results (IVP, 2006), The Journey from Texts to Translations:The Origin and Development of the Bible (Baker Academic, 2004) and Using Old Testament Hebrew Preaching: A Guide for Students and Pastors (Kregel Academic, 2009).

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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I highly recommend it as a current Seminary student.
ApologiaPhoenix
Thus, I would maintain that one should read one or the other, but probably not both as the information is largely duplication.
Bret James Stewart
I found Paul Wegner's book extraordinarily helpful in understanding the Textual Criticism process.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Dwood610 on September 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
A wonderful starting point for the novice in the complex and constantly-shifting field of textual criticism. Wegner brings a workman bluecollar approach to the subject helping to give handles to the concepts involved. He provides examples from both testaments with explanations for the reasoning involved. Two strong features for classroom use are the excurses Wegner provides on how to read the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (Hebrew OT) and the UBS 4th Ed (Greek NT). The best feature, however, is the glossary of textual critical terms. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is a perceived favoritism toward the OT that slanted some of it in my reading.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Didier Fontaine on March 22, 2008
Format: Paperback
We are accustomed to read NT introduction to textual criticism. But this book is far more complete and easy to read, than the others. With numerous biblical examples, clear explanations, and large bibliographical data, the Student's Guide inoculate the passion of the textual criticism field.

For a firt approach, I warmly commend this book, more than Green, Metzger or Tov. Surely, as a professor of Old Testament, P.D. Wegner put a little more emphasis on Old Testament textual criticism. But in view of the plethore of titles consacred to NT, this not a lacune, on the contrary.

So I found the book easy, quite complete, well illustrated, and definitely worthing more than a reading !!!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By ApologiaPhoenix on August 26, 2009
Format: Paperback
I've read books on textual criticism before and seeing this refers to itself as a student's guide, I figured I'd get just the basics. Not at all! Wegner goes into several issues in textual criticism with not just how its done, but the history of textual criticism, great people in that history, and important manuscripts. It is hard to believe that so much can be packed into around 300 pages worth of information, but the reader wanting to learn about textual criticism will not be disappointed with this book.

I highly recommend it as a current Seminary student. I read this book of my own free-will and not as a class requirement, but if I saw that Seminaries and Bible Colleges were having this book be read for classes on the textual criticism of Scripture, I would have to applaud their wisdom.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By John R. Holmes, Jr. on June 8, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The following quotations from the book explain the premise underlying textual criticism of the Bible:

The Introduction (p. 23): “The job of the textual critic is extremely important, for we are trying to determine the exact reading of a text in order to know what God has said and expects from us.”

The Conclusion (p. 298): ”Is the biblical text accurate and reliable, or has it been so corrupted in the copying process we cannot really know with certainty what God has said? Textual criticism may not fully answer every question, but a good working knowledge of text-critical principles can help us begin. Textual criticism provides the evidence necessary to compare the many and comparatively recent rediscovered fragments and manuscripts to determine the most reliable reading of a text.”

Except for explaining the religious premise, this does not come across as a religious book. Be warned, however, that it’s also not a survey. The science of textual criticism is detailed and complex, and the book is pitched more toward serious students than casual readers, even thought the author does try to help. For example, when you run into MT and LXX a few pages into the text, you need to know there’s a list of abbreviations on P. 13 that translates them to Masoretic Text and Septuagint. If that’s not sufficient, the Glossary on P. 302 elaborates on the Masoretic Text. But as for the Septuagint, if you don’t already know what it is you’ll probably have to check Wikipedia.

If one accepts the premise of textual criticism, this is an excellent book.
Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on April 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
I found Paul Wegner's book extraordinarily helpful in understanding the Textual Criticism process. As an amateur in Apologetics I have read many generic descriptions of Textual Criticism in various books. Yet, I was always curious about the art and science of this process. I was especially delighted that Paul Wegner gave such a thorough overview of Old Testament textual criticism as I already had a reasonable grasp of how the New Testament process worked.
Of a special note, it is not necessary to know Hebrew or Greek to read and understand this book.
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A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results
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