John H. Sailhamer - Pentateuch as Narrative: A Biblical-Theological Commentary

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This book is scholarly and well-written by a bona-fide Old Testament Hebrew scholar (unlike Karen Armstrong, whose HISTORY OF GOD, if I recall, was taken to task in a review in Bible Review magazine (hardly a conservative magazine) - which makes me hesitant to read her Genesis book, but based on your comments, I'll check it out). Sailhamer is, I think, conservative/evangelical, but his reading/interpretation of Genesis, supported by his substantial learning, may finally crack the extremely literalistic interpretation some Christians feel they have to give any treatment of Genesis.

There is a briefer, paperback version called Genesis Unbound, which sets forth the author's interpretation of Genesis - i.e., that it's a prefigurement of the promised land.

I found an interesting WEB site by a Christian re: his book called The Origins Solution, dealing with Genesis, human origins, and science - basically calling Creation Science incompatible with both science and the Bible. Based on what he says, Sailhamer might be good on the Hebrew but ill-informed about science vs. Genesis. So I don't know what my complete evaluation of Sailhamer might be.

(BTW, it is in the December 1994 issue of BIBLE REVIEW that Karen Armstrong's A HISTORY OF GOD is reviewed - and DEVASTATINGLY trashed by Richard Elliott Friedman, scholar/author of WHO WROTE THE BIBLE? Based on what Friedman writes, I don't know if I'd trust ANYTHING Armstrong writes about the Biblical view of God - read his review and see if it causes you to reevaluate her. If you want to quote me in order to expose his Genesis/Tabernacle thesis, go ahead - I'd like Christians to see that there are MANY ways to read Genesis, and that the simplistic Creationist view is most likely not defensible.)


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