Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Review: OT Story

How much of the Bible do you truly give attention to
as you seek to understand God? If you're like many
Christians, we can dismiss nearly three-fourth's of it
in one fell swoop - the Old Testament. Oh, you enjoy
a handful of the Psalms, most of Proverbs and a dash of
exciting narrative here and there, but honestly, how
much time do you spend in the Old Testament?
Probably not enough.

If that's the case, you'd do especially well to have a
faithful guide to help lead you through this oldest
section of God's written revelation to people. You'll
probably want that guide to be reliable, highly-readable,
well-illustrated and relatively inexpensive. And if you
come upon Alec Motyer's slim hardback entitled
The Story of the Old Testament: Men With a Message
(Baker, 2001, 191pp; edited by John R.W. Stott), you'll
have found precisely that sort of guide. Profusely
illustrated with color photos, maps and charts, this
well-bound book will something you'll turn to again
and again and will take the wear.

I'll admit I'm a bit biased since I do have my own set of
favorite authors and when it comes to Old Testament
literature, Alec Motyer is near the head of that list
of favorites, but he's there not without reason. Motyer
has a knack for saying a lot in a few words and dealing
with the very issues that come most readily to your
mind as you read the word. To boot, the editor is John
R.W. Stott, a household name among preachers for the
past several decades - and also one of my favorites.

If you're located near a Half-Price Bookstore, drop in
and see if they have a copy - I've found a number of
copies of this book there of late at only $7.99 -
a steal of a deal. CBD (christianbook.com) has it
available for virtually the same price. It would
make a good gift, too, for anyone you know who wants
to get more serious about reading all the Bible and
not just bits and pieces here and there, but doesn't
know where or how to start by themself. Someone,
perhaps like you!