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A House for My Name: A Survey of the Old Testament Paperback – June 20, 2000
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One of the most important lessons any Christian reader of the Old Testament must learn in order to truly understand its message is its connection to the New Testament. Jesus himself said that the whole Old Testament looked forward to his coming suffering and glorification (Luke 24:25-27, 44-48), but it is surprising how many ignore this crucial principle of interpretation. Peter Leithart has written A House for My Name with that lesson in mind. He not only gives us a first-class introduction to the Old Testament in the context of its own time, but he also shows how all the Scriptures point to the ultimate object of our faith—Jesus Christ. I strongly recommend this book. --Tremper Longman III, author of Making Sense of the Old Testament
About the Author
Peter Leithart (Ph.D. Cambridge) is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church in America and a Fellow of Theology and Literature at New St. Andrews College, Moscow, Idaho. He is the author of The Kingdom and the Power, Brightest Heaven of Invention: A Christian Guide to Six Shakespeare Plays, and Heroes of the City of Man: A Christian Guide to Select Ancient Literature. He and his wife Noel have nine children.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book is practically unmatched when it comes to showing the typology of scripture. Personally, I learned to many lessons to even count from this book. It is very Christ exalting and shows how the whole Old Testament points to Christ and the Glory of Yahweh. This book will teach you at an introductory level how to read the story of scripture and will leave you praising God for the scripture.
It's very easy to read and he avoids all complicated and unnecessary wording. The only difficult sections result from the weightiness of the text and not from an attempt by the author to sound intelligent.
The only real complaint I have is that a few key Christian doctrines could have been spelled out for new comers, along with a bit more on the plan of redemption.
This is a wonderful book.
Leithart's hope is that the reader comes to a conclusion that the Bible says the same thing, repeatedly, that of creation and re-creation; because only then can the reader of the Bible see the connection between Adam and Solomon, or between Joseph and Daniel.
The great value of Leithart's 250 page plus work is enabling the reader to understand the literary underpinnings of the history of Hebrew people and why that promotes the overarching theology of the message. This book is valuable for teenage students and above of the Old Testament, especially those who have imbibed the idea that the Christian faith is primarily one of the inner life, and not particularly connected to history or to the larger community, nor to the responsibilities that are required of the people of God. In fact, perhaps the greatest use of this book would come from applying it in group studies or in family studies, especially with children capable of understanding larger stories and a basic depth of human relations, with how they relate to their God.
As an example, he says that many people are killed and murdered in the Bible, sometimes with very little detail and sometimes with great detail. So if the writer goes into details about how someone was killed, then there is probably a reason for us to know that, and the reason is to connect the event to some other event, either in the past or the future. So when we read that someone was killed by a head wound, and especially if that head wound came from a woman and his skull is caved in, then it's pointing us back to Genesis chapter 3 when God tells Satan that the seed from a woman will crush his head, and it's pointing us ahead to the Messiah, the ultimate in head-crushing. OK, I'm paraphrasing, but hopefully, you get the idea.
I highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in great literature because the Bible is great literature, whether or not you believe it's the "Word of God." If you do believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, then this book will be a great blessing to you.
Thankfully, Leithart avoids this. There is not a word about composition or dating of the documents themselves. Instead, he focuses on the themes of the Old Testament, beginning in Genesis, and shows how these themes are reiterated throughout the Old Testament in preparation for the work of Christ and revelation of the New Testament.
The book is intended to be used for family devotions or study classes. To facilitate this each chapter is divided into a few (generally 3-5) sections with associated scripture readings, review questions, and questions intended to stimulate further thought. There are 8 chapters in all, focusing primarily on the narrative portions of the Old Testament. The prophets are discussed where appropriate, but primarily in relation to the coincident narrative sections.
My only complaint is that the psalms and wisdom literature are mostly omitted. This is understandable given that Leithart's focus is the Old Testament as a single story of redemptive history. Perhaps someday Dr. Leithart will be persuaded to produce a companion volume.
If you have difficult understanding how all those stories (and even those pesky genealogies) that you vaguely remember from Sunday School fit together into a coherent whole, this book is a must read.
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