Reviews of

Biblical Hebrew Vocabulary by Conceptual Categories: A Student’s Guide to Nouns in the Old Testament

In Biblical Hebrew Language, HB/OT, Hebrew Language, J. David PLEINS, Jonathan HOMRIGHAUSEN, Kerry Lee, Zondervan on November 17, 2017 at 6:10 pm

2017.12.24 | J. David Pleins with Jonathan Homrighausen, Biblical Hebrew Vocabulary by Conceptual Categories: A Student’s Guide to Nouns in the Old Testament. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2017. ISBN: 9780310530749

Review by Kerry Lee

Biblical Hebrew Vocabulary by Conceptual Categories: A Student’s Guide to Nouns in the Old Testament, by J. David Pleins and Jonathan Homrighausen, is a lexical aid for students and teachers of Biblical Hebrew that arranges over 2,000 Hebrew nouns into over 175 conceptual categories, or semantic fields. This book is highly versatile with many uses not only for beginning students but also for intermediate and advanced students as well as for teachers.

The way Biblical Hebrew has traditionally been taught follows a largely deductive, grammar-first-vocabulary-second approach (the majority of beginner grammars all follow more or less the same basic structure, with some minor variations). While this approach might work for university students, it often proves problematic for non-traditional students (working adults and retirees, among whom there are many who desire to learn Biblical Hebrew). In fact, personal experience calls into question whether it really is the best method for any but the most dedicated and academically minded of university students.


The Jewish Literary Imagination in Antiquity

In Book of Psalms, Eva MROCZEK, Hebrew Bible, Jeremiah Coogan, Oxford University Press, Scribal culture, Second Temple, Uncategorized on November 9, 2017 at 8:04 am

Mrocz mare

2017.11.23 | Eva Mroczek, The Jewish Literary Imagination in Antiquity. New York, NY/Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2016. ISBN: 9780190279837

Reviewed by Jeremiah Coogan, University of Notre Dame.

Before the categories of “book” and “Bible” dominated the literary imagination, Mroczek asks, “What did this literary world seem like to Second Temple writers?” (4). How did the creators and users of literary artifacts organize and conceptualize writing? We note that this literary world of Second Temple Judaism is explicitly textual; Mroczek avoids the temptation to see orality as the only alternative to our familiar models of textuality: she explores literary modes that are “deeply, self-consciously textual, but shaped differently from our own” (5).

Jesus the Eternal Son

In Christology, Eerdmans, Gospels, Michael F. BIRD, Michael Kok, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels on November 3, 2017 at 4:00 pm


2017.11.22 | Michael F. Bird, Jesus the Eternal Son: Answering Adoptionist Christologies. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2017. ISBN: 978-0-8028-7506-8

Reviewed by Michael Kok, The King’s University in Alberta, Canada.

The Christian doctrine of the hypostatic union aimed to articulate how Jesus’s human and divine natures were united in one person. Over-emphasizing Jesus’s humanity at the expense of his divinity, or vice versa, was ruled out of bounds. One of the christological conceptions that was censured for falling short of the orthodox consensus on the incarnation has been labelled by modern scholars as “adoptionism,” which Michael F. Bird defines as “reducing Jesus to a human figure who had acquired divine status by merit” (7).