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Getting the Message: A Plan for Interpreting and Applying the Bible Paperback – July 1, 1996

4.7 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Daniel M. Doriani is vice president of strategic academic projects and professor of theology at Covenant Theological Seminary. Previously he was senior pastor of Central Presbyterian Church in Clayton, Missouri.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 266 pages
  • Publisher: P & R Publishing (July 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0875522386
  • ISBN-13: 978-0875522388
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #82,710 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Robert Huffstedtler VINE VOICE on November 13, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been on something of a quest to find the right book to use in an adult Sunday School class on biblical interpretation and application. While this book still isn't quite perfect, it stands head and shoulders above the other dozen or so books I have read on the topic in the past year. If I could assign it a more exact numerical rating, it would probably be about 4.7 out of 5.
The book is divided into 13 chapters, each ending with 2-4 exercises to allow the reader to practice the material covered in the chapter. The book is organised around an acronym, CAPTOR, which stands for Context, Analysis, Problems, Themes, Obligations, and Reflection. I'm not a big fan of mnemonic acronyms because I often remember the acronym and not what it is intended to stand for, and because adherence to an acronym sometimes necessitates choosing terms that don't exactly fit (for instance, Doriani admits that application would have been a better label than Obligations for that particular section of the book). However, many people find them far more helpful than I do, so I won't deduct any points for that.
Context is explained as both the literary and historical context. The book examines how one goes about understanding and applying each and directs readers to tools that might be helpful (e.g. bible dictionaries).
The section on analysis is divided into two chapters, one on analyzing narrative and the other on analyzing discourse (Doriani's catch all term for poetry, prophetic oracles, wisdom literature, the epistles of the new testament and so on). Initially I suspected that his attempt to abstract all non-narrative into a general category would fail, but he handles it surprisingly well. The few pages on understanding Hebrew poetry need to be greatly expanded.
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Format: Paperback
Doriani has assembled this book with great concern for those who have not had formal Seminary or Bible college training, but who have a strong desire to be involved in the teaching ministry at the local church. I believe--as a formally trained Biblical interpreter--that this book needs to to be in the hands of all those in this category, as well as in the hands of those formally trained! Doriani has carefully communicated all the important "steps" of Biblical interpretation in a manner that is understandable and clear for lay men and women. Don't know Hebrew or Greek but desire to teach the Bible correctly? Buy this book now.
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This book is a great read and easy to understand. The book is organized wonderfully with summaries and sections so that the information is easily accessible at a later time. In addition, the CAPTOR method is easy to remember. This book is a must for any minister serious about teaching the word of God. Moreover, this is a great book for those that want to learn how to study the Bible for themselves. If you are sick and tried of shallow Bible studies and sermons this book will give you the tools you need to deepen your knowledge of the Bible and therefore your relationship with Jesus. RLT
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This book teaches you how to interpret the Bible by providing you with helpful information about the how to observe what you are reading, the different literary styles of the Bible and many ways to digest the meaning of scripture and apply it to your life. Anyone teaching the Bible should have this book
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While a biblical scholar, Dr. Doriani writes to all in a way that you will find useful and easy to understand. I truly believe he writes with the sensitivity of someone who really wants you to understand; he will not speak over your head. His ability to help you visualize, embrace and apply concepts is remarkable. This is true of all he writes, and I would add from experience, that he is also a very good professor... You can easily get a free sample of his style by listening to one of his sermons. Just Google him, they're easy to find.
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Doriani does an outstanding job describing "the Message," as laid out as it is supposed to be described. I am speaking, of course, Biblically. The application of the Bible is clear, concise, and definitely relevantly applicable after this read.
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I bought this for a Hermeneutics class in seminary. It has a lot of practical advice mixed with some theoretical assumptions. The assumptions are all the standard orthodox assumptions about Scripture you would expect from an orthodox Protestant.. The methodology is solid and exhaustive. It covers all the bases.

I will use it to teach any future interpretation/hermeneutics classes I teach at my church. The methodology is simple enough to where you could scale it to as much or little detail as you would like, so you can teach the CAPTOR method in a day or for a whole semester.
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By CAM on June 18, 2008
Format: Paperback
I was required to do the C.A.P.T.O.R. plan with one of my college classes that used this books as a resource. It was wonderful to actually get the book and read it for myself. A little complicated in places but a good read either way.
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