Internationally respected scholar Richard Bauckham offers a brief, engaging study of divine revelation in Scripture. He probes the deep meaning of well-known moments in the biblical story in order to address the key question the Bible is designed to answer: Who is God?
Accessible for laypeople and important to scholars, this volume begins by exploring three key events in the Bible in which God is revealed: Jacob’s dream at Bethel (the revelation of the divine presence), Moses at the burning bush (the revelation of the divine Name), and Moses on Mount Sinai (the revelation of the divine character). From there, Bauckham shows how the New Testament builds on these Old Testament passages by exploring three revelatory events in Mark’s Gospel, events that reveal the Trinity: Jesus’s baptism, transfiguration, and crucifixion.
“To discover that God is ‘with’ us is probably the most important discovery anyone can make, for, once made, it colors all of life’s experiences.” (Page 11)
“What he has discovered is not so much that God is in that particular place as that God is where Jacob is. God is with Jacob and will be with him wherever he goes: ‘Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go’ (28:15). God’s revelation to Jacob is not for a man who is going to settle down at Bethel with a temple close at hand in which to worship God. Rather it is for a man on a journey. From now on every place where Jacob sleeps will be a Bethel. The leitmotif of Jacob’s life will be God’s presence with him (see Gen. 31:3; 35:3; 46:4).” (Page 9)
“Moreover, it appears that ‘The Lord be with you!’ was a standard greeting in use in Israel.5” (Page 11)
“We can answer the question ‘Who is God?’ only by attending to who God has revealed himself to be.” (Page 1)
“But only to Isaac did God reveal that God was ‘with’ him (Gen. 26:24, cf. 26:28).2 This promise of personal presence then comes to much fuller expression in Jacob’s dream at Bethel. On this occasion God repeats the promises made to Abraham and Isaac, personalizing them as promises to Jacob and his descendants (28:13–14), but the focus of both what Jacob sees and what he hears God say is the revelation of God’s presence with him. It is a revelation that, as we shall see, anticipates much that the rest of the Bible has to say about the presence of God with humans.” (Pages 6–7)
Richard Bauckham (1946– ) was professor of New Testament studies at St Mary's College, University of St Andrews. He retired in 2007 from this position in order to concentrate on research and writing. He currently is the senior scholar at Ridley Hall in Cambridge and visiting professor at St. Mellitus College.
Bauckham earned a PhD at the University of Cambridge and was a fellow of St John's College. He taught theology for one year at the University of Leeds and for 15 years at the University of Manchester before teaching at the University of St Andrews. He is a fellow of the British Academy and a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
Bauckham is known for his commentary on Jude and 2 Peter in the Word Biblical Commentary and his book Jude and the Relatives of Jesus in the Early Church.