Do we need the Old Testament? That’s a familiar question, often asked. But as an Old Testament scholar, John Goldingay turns that question on its head: Do we need the New Testament?
What’s new about the New Testament? After all, the Old Testament was the only Bible Jesus and the disciples knew. Jesus affirmed it as the Word of God. Do we need anything more? And what happens when we begin to look at the Old Testament, which is the First Testament, not as a deficient old work in need of a christological makeover, but as a rich and splendid revelation of God’s faithfulness to Israel and the world?
In this cheerfully provocative yet probingly serious book, John Goldingay sets the question and views it from a variety of angles. Under his expert hand, each facet unfolds the surprising richness of the Old Testament and challenges us to recalibrate our perspective on it.
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A fresh, accessible and at times provocative explanation of the enduring relevance of the Old (‘First’) Testament for Christians. It will challenge readers to embrace the first seventy percent of the canon as truly Christian Scripture.
—Mark J. Boda, professor of Old Testament, McMaster Divinity College, professor, faculty of Theology, McMaster University, Ontario, Canada
John Goldingay is incapable of being uninteresting. I smiled approvingly at many passages in this book and grimaced at a few others, all the while deeply grateful for such a passionate dismantling of pernicious but widely held myths about the Old Testament’s theological inferiority. If Goldingay does not quite come to grips with what makes the New Testament new, he nevertheless brilliantly illustrates how the Old Testament is already good news on its own.
—Stephen B. Chapman, associate professor of Old Testament, Duke University
The early church’s problem with the Old Testament was completely different to ours. Their problem was not how to make sense of the Old Testament given the coming of Jesus, but the reverse: Given that the Old Testament is God’s revelation, how do we make sense of Jesus? With this unusual question, Do We Need the New Testament?, Goldingay turns our modern thinking on its head and exposes the weaknesses in the way contemporary Christians understand the Old Testament—and the New. With thought-provoking ideas on every page, this book will help readers look at the Old and New Testaments in new and exciting ways.
—Nathan MacDonald, lecturer in Hebrew Bible and fellow of St. John’s College, University of Cambridge
Reflecting on new perspectives on the life of Jesus, issues of Psalm 137, the role of church and state and their ethics, and the hermeneutics of theological interpretation, the reader will enjoy the questioning and provocative mind of John Goldingay as he takes up his laptop to challenge much of today’s conventional Christian wisdom.
—Richard S. Hess, Earl S. Kalland Professor of Old Testament and Semitic Languages, Denver Seminary
John E. Goldingay (PhD, University of Nottingham; DD, Archbishop of Canterbury at Lambeth) is David Allan Hubbard Professor of Old Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary. He was previously principal and a professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at St John’s Theological College in Nottingham, England. His books include An Introduction to the Old Testament, The Theology of the Book of Isaiah, Key Questions about Interpretation, and commentaries on Psalms, Isaiah, and Daniel. He has also authored the three-volume Old Testament Theology and the seventeen-volume Old Testament for Everyone series.
Goldingay also serves as priest-in-charge at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, Pasadena. He holds membership in the Society of Biblical Literature and the Society for Old Testament Study, and served on the Task Force on Biblical Interpretation in the Anglican Communion and the editorial board for the Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies.