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The bottom line: A must read for anyone serious about laying a foundation for biblical study.
Genesis Interpretation is the second book I have read in the Interpretation series (John), and I am equally impressed with the wealth and depth of knowledge provided in this volume. The book’s greatest strength is its ability to equip the reader with a comprehensive understanding of the deeper meaning and messages embedded in the Bible’s first book that could not be extracted in solitary study. For anyone who desires a more profound exegetical understanding or desires the ability to digest the Biblical foundations established in the text, this book is for you. One will quickly realize that although the words were written thousands of years ago, the stories not only detail a historical record of the faith’s founding fathers but also provide a blueprint for navigating everyday life and its conflicts, highly relevant in our modern age (i.e. the promise vs. present-preference, familial conflict, the visionaries: seen vs unseen, secularism vs. piety, forgiveness, right of primogeniture and inversion). The Biblical stories are much more than stories, and Brueggemann assists in understanding several basic tenets that serve as a general guidebook for the subsequent 65 books of the Bible, notably the pervasive, persistent divine hand in all things despite our own thoughts and emotions (i.e. guilt) that inherently draw us to different conclusions. I would think if you were to read only one book in the series, this would be it as the first book sets the tone for everything else.
Dr. C.H.E. Sadaphal