A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results

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9780830827312: A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results

The Bible has been on a long historical journey since its original composition. Its texts have been copied and recopied. And despite the most careful and painstaking efforts of scribes and publishers down through the centuries, errors of one sort or another have crept in and have been reproduced. Sorting out the errors and determining the original wording is the task of textual criticism. In fact, the task of textual criticism is so daunting and detailed that it is divided between Old Testament textual critics and New Testament textual critics. That is why nearly every book on the subject focuses on the textual criticism of either the Old or New Testament. But if you are one of those interested in a general understanding of textual criticism, this book introduces you to textual criticism of the whole Bible--the Hebrew Old Testament and the Greek New Testament. In plain language and with ample illustration, Paul D. Wegner gives you an overview of the history and methods, aims and results of textual criticism. In the process you will gain an appreciation for the vast work that has been accomplished in preserving the text of Scripture and find a renewed confidence in its reliability.

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About the Author:

Paul D. Wegner (Ph.D., Kings College, University of London) is a professor of Old Testament with a specialty in the study of Isaiah. He taught at Phoenix Seminary for eleven years and, before that, at Moody Bible Institute for nearly thirteen years. He is the author of A Student´s Guide to Textual Criticism: Its History, Methods, and Results (IVP, 2006), The Journey from Texts to Translations:The Origin and Development of the Bible (Baker Academic, 2004) and Using Old Testament Hebrew Preaching: A Guide for Students and Pastors (Kregel Academic, 2009).

Review:

Wegner has provided teachers and students with a clearly written and wonderfully illustrated introduction to the practice of textual criticism of the entire Bible. (JETS, November 2007)

This inexpensive book can be read with profit by student and specialist alike. Its particular strengths are that it treats both OT and NT and that the text is accompanied by more than one hundred illustrations of various kinds that help to bring the history of the discipline alive for the reader. I read through the book with the same excitement that I have when reading a good detective novel! (Claude E. Cox, The Catholic Biblical Quarterly 69, 2007)

An exceptional resource presenting the topic will well-grounded research, unambiguous style, an exceptional glossary and a thorough index. [Wegner] covers the vastly different fields of OT and NT textual criticism and does an admirable job presenting difficult issues in an understandable fashion. . . . Overall, the work is a welcome addition and will prove to be a valuable asset for unfolding the mysteries of textual criticism. (Darin M. Wood, Southwestern Journal of Theology, Vol. 47 (2))

"No introductory textbook to textual criticism of the Bible measures up to A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible. It uniquely combines Old Testament and New Testament textual criticism into one handy, delightfully illustrated volume. Paul Wegner writes for students, successfully guiding them through the text's long and complex journey by his clear style, objectivity and arresting photographs. General readers of the Bible will appreciate this introduction to the textual notes in their Bibles." (Bruce K. Waltke, Professor of Old Testament, Reformed Theological Seminary, and Emeritus Professor of Old Testament, Regent College)

"Here, at last, is a well-written, succinctly stated, wisely selected history and wonderfully illustrated textual criticism guide that covers both testaments in one volume. Where others have often made this science sound arcane and obtuse, Paul Wegner has skillfully described textual criticism in plain but ample and interesting ways. I highly recommend it to all serious Bible students, but especially to seminary faculty who must juggle book budgets and who up to now have had to order a separate text in this area for each testament." (Walter C. Kaiser Jr., President and Colman M. Mockler Distinguished Professor of Old Testament, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary)

"If you are looking for an introduction to the complex world of textual criticism from a trusted and reliable source then A Student’s Guide to Textual Criticism is a book you should not overlook. Wegner has skillfully gathered a wealth of imperative information and presented it with judicious care and attention for the student of Scripture. If you are a pastor, teacher, student, or interested laymen, I couldn’t recommend this resource enough. It will encourage and enhance your understand and confidence in the Bible." (John Kight, Sojo Theo, November 23, 2015)

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