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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

A Severe Mercy: Sin and Its Remedy in the Old Testament
Boda, Mark J.

Winona Lake, Ind.: Eisenbrauns, 2009 pp. x + 622. $59.50

Series Information
Siphrut: Literature and Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures, 1


Description: The biblical-theological approach Boda takes in this work is canonical-thematic, tracing the presentation of the theology of sin and its remedy in the canonical form and shape of the Old Testament. The hermeneutical foundations for this enterprise have been laid by others in past decades, especially by Brevard Childs in his groundbreaking work. But A Severe Mercy also reflects recent approaches to integrating biblical understanding with other methodologies in addition to Childs's. Thus, it enters the imaginative space of the ancient canon of the Old Testament in order to highlight the "word views" and "literary shapes" of the "texts taken individually and as a whole collection." For the literary shape of the individual texts, it places the "word views" of the dominant expressions and images, as well as various passages, in the larger context of the biblical books in which they are found. For the literary shape of the texts as a collection, it identifies key subthemes and traces their development through the Old Testament canon. The breadth of Boda's study is both challenging and courageous, resulting in the first comprehensive examination of the topic in the 21st century.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Literature, Methods, Theological Approaches, Biblical Theology, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Theology

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Review by Erhard S. Gerstenberger
Published 4/3/2010
Citation: Erhard S. Gerstenberger, review of Mark J. Boda, A Severe Mercy: Sin and Its Remedy in the Old Testament, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2010).


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