This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Old Testament theology by Gerhard von Rad

Old Testament theology

by Gerhard von Rad

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
356147,692 (3.67)1



Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 1 mention

Old Testament Theology represents a vast and thorough work that attempts to make sense of the Old Testament and its perspectives as a whole, and also considers the New Testament and how it perceived the works that came before it.

von Rad comes from the more liberal school of thought, and provides his analyses based on a form-critical and a traditio-historical perspective. In his estimation, Israel really represented a coalition of tribes that had always been in Canaan who were bound together in their belief in Yahwism (the "amphictyonic clan league") who developed a "saving history" which involved memories and concepts of the patriarchs and an Exodus narrative. These traditions were eventually wrapped up in monarchical perspectives that came after the accession of the kings. von Rad accepts the documentary hypothesis, three Isaianic authors hypothesis, and the strong hand of the Deuteronomist (or its school) on the works of history, with the Chronicler coming later.

While these operating assumptions make it hard to agree with a lot of what von Rad presents, he provides much food for thought in terms of his understanding of the texts and their relationships. He ends up being an outspoken critic of the methodology of his age and the presupposition that an analysis of the OT really is the analysis of what can be historically ascertained as viable and what must be discarded. von Rad demonstrates well that this is not a study of Old Testament theology-- one must actually approach the texts and try to give Israel the benefit of the doubt.

While I do not agree with all of his conclusions regarding the main element of his argument, I can appreciate some of the lessons one can gain from the approach: the belief that what we have revealed in the Bible is a series of traditions involving YHWH's saving actions in Israel's history. We have traditions regarding Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; the Exodus; Joshua and the Conquest; Judges; David and the future King; the return from the exile; and so on. von Rad points out how the Old Testament is entirely written with a view to the future: YHWH has acted, and His deliverance awaits. After all, God makes promises to Abraham that are only partially fulfilled in Moses and Joshua. When establishing David as king, God points further to a line of kings, and of course the ultimate King. von Rad then takes this line of thought to its "Christian" conclusion, and provides a nice continuity between the Testaments: the belief that YHWH has enacted a major and groundbreaking saving event through Jesus Christ, representing the fulfillment of prophecy and OT expectations, provides the crescendo for what the OT was always seeking after. We find the ultimate fulfillment of the promises to Abraham; the promise of Moses regarding a prophet; the ultimate conquest; the King of Kings; the true return from exile.

While it is challenging to work with some of the presuppositions in the work, one can mine von Rad's magnum opus and find much that is worthwhile. ( )
  deusvitae | Jun 14, 2008 |
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
First words
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (3.67)
2 1
3 3
4 3
5 2

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 138,917,783 books! | Top bar: Always visible