Whose Bible is It Anyway?
Do religious writings make sense to any reader who does not accept the reality of the deities to which they refer? Do Christians understand the Old Testament better than the Jews understand their Bible? The Bible, argues this book, may...
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Do religious writings make sense to any reader who does not accept the reality of the deities to which they refer? Do Christians understand the Old Testament better than the Jews understand their Bible? The Bible, argues this book, may belong to the Church or synagogue as an instrument of religious practice, but as an object of academic study it belongs to the world as a whole., and as such can function in theory and practice as a secular discourse. A number of exegetical studies suggests that a genuinely academic discourse about biblical writings - one that distances itself from received canons of interpretation - can expose a subtext of deceit within the Creation narratives, re-conceptualize the relationship between Abraham and his deity, reveal lament psalms as texts of oppression, and identify the death of Daniel's God. In a new chapter, Davies evaluates how the film Monty Python's Life of Brian contributes to 'Life of Jesus' research. Here is a challenge to conventional biblical scholarship and a bid to define and establish a genuine academic discipline of biblical studies.
Philip Davies is Professor of Biblical Studies at the University of Sheffield.
Emeritus Professor Philip Davies was educated at Oxford and (Ph.D., University of St Andrews), and he taught in Ghana before he was appointed at Sheffield.
His major interests are in intertestamental and rabbinic literature and in the Persian and Hellenistic periods. He is an expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls, and has written four books on that subject: 1QM: The War Scroll from Qumran; Qumran; The Damascus Covenant and Behind the Essenes. He is co-author with John Rogerson of the textbook, The Old Testament World, and author of a book on Old Testament history, In Search of 'Ancient Israel'.
He and Professor Clines founded the Journal for the Study of the Old Testament, and he sits on the board of the Supplement Series of monographs.
He is also Executive Officer of the European Association of Biblical Studies and an Editor of Equinox Publishing.
- Chapter 1: About This Book; Chapter 2: Two Nations, One Womb; Chapter 3: What Is A Bible? Chapter 4: Who To Believe? Chapter 5: Male Bonding: A Tale Of Two Buddies; Chapter 6: 'take It To The Lord In Prayer': The Peasants Lament; Chapter 7: Daniel Sees The Death Of God; Chapter 8: Life Of Brian Research