The third edition of Biblical Interpretation focuses on the three “worlds” of biblical interpretation—the world behind the text, the world of the text, and the world in front of the text. A fourth section helps readers combine the three worlds into an integrated hermeneutical strategy. Clear explanations of the various interpretive approaches are supported by helpful biblical examples. Key terms and study questions at the end of each chapter make this book ideal for classroom use. Succinct synopses highlight a host of distinct approaches to understanding the Bible. New synopses and an updated bibliography help readers keep pace with the most recent developments in biblical interpretation.
Whether you’re a student, scholar, pastor, or professor, Biblical Interpretation provokes you to read the Bible honestly—to let it surprise, challenge, and correct you as you apply the many steps of interpretation. By using the tools included in Biblical Interpretation, you’ll approach Bible study with more depth and understanding. Integrate the practical methods found in this volume with your preferred Bible, the Passage Guide, and the other Bible study tools in Logos Bible Software—then dive into Bible study with a vast knowledge base right before your eyes.
Tate offers an informed and balanced study of variety in biblical interpretation. His command of primary and secondary sources and his clarity of presentation make this book a vade mecum for students and teachers.
—Phyllis Trible, university professor of biblical studies, Wake Forest University
In this significantly expanded edition of his textbook, W. Randolph Tate brings the advantages of an integrated understanding of biblical hermeneutics to a new generation of interpreters. He does more here than simply clarify his explanations of methods and add updated bibliographical references. In this edition Tate more fully applies his ‘three worlds’ typology to an orientation of biblical hermeneutics vis-à-vis the plethora of critical methods now in regular use among increasingly diverse contemporary literary and biblical interpretive communities. In the process his typology proves itself a flexible and reliable framework for the study of biblical hermeneutics.
—William Yarchin, professor of biblical studies, School of Theology, Azusa Pacific University
Tate’s 1991 book carefully sketched out the differences between and the interrelationships among the world behind the text, the world within the text, and the world in front of the text. The second and revised edition (1997) provided additional information about the relationship between the text and the reader: ‘What Happens When We Read?’ His third edition addresses some of the new insights into hermeneutics that have appeared within the last decade. While short lists of relevant resources are included throughout the book after each section, a 22-page bibliography can be found at the end of the book. These bibliographies, along with the author, subject, and biblical text indices at the end, add to the usefulness of this first-rate book as a textbook for studying biblical interpretation.
—The Bible Today
While Tate insists that his is not a textbook on critical methodologies, one of the outstanding features of this volume is its insistence on providing an accessible (and of necessity, brief) introduction to the seemingly inexhaustible list of methodological approaches currently at the disposal of the contemporary biblical interpreter. Not surprisingly, given Tate’s work on Mark, the volume excels toward the end when illustrating the merging of Tate’s ‘three worlds’ in his interpretation of the second gospel. . . . An array of indexes, a steady stream of discussion questions, and well-stocked lists of further reading make this a very usable introduction to contemporary biblical interpretation.
Tate’s third edition of his Biblical Interpretation reveals a mature approach to the subject of hermeneutics. . . . Review questions are included with each chapter to help the reader think through the issues. . . . The book is especially helpful for those who have already studied hermeneutics and exegesis. . . . Readers will also benefit from Tate’s discussion of critical methods. . . . This volume is a helpful addition to resources on interpretation. Its focus on three worlds [author, text, and reader] provides a perspective that will help readers balance their approach in the exegetical process.
W. Randolph Tate is a professor of humanities at Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri, where he has taught for more than 25 years. He is the author of several books, including Handbook for Biblical Interpretation: An Essential Guide to Methods, Terms, and Concepts, 2nd ed. and Interpreting the Bible: A Handbook of Terms and Methods.