Guides to the Old Testament

With the needs of students in particular in mind, the Society for Old Testament Study has published a series of Study Guides to the books of the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible. A first series of Old Testament Guides, published in the 1980s and 1990s under the general editorship of Norman Whybray, was well received as a very useful resource which teachers could recommend to their students with confidence. But the first series has inevitably become dated with the passage of time, so it was decided that a new series should be commissioned.

The aim of the new series is to continue the tradition established by the first series, namely to provide a concise, comprehensive, manageable and affordable guide to each biblical book. The intention is that each volume will contain an authoritative overview of the current thinking on the traditional matters of Old Testament/Hebrew Bible introduction, addressing matters of content, major critical issues, and theological perspectives, in the light of recent scholarship, and suggesting suitable further reading. Where appropriate to the particular biblical book or books, attention may also be given to less traditional approaches or particular theoretical perspectives.

All the authors are members of the Society, known for their scholarship and with wide experience of teaching in Universities and Colleges. The series general editor, Adrian Curtis, taught Old Testament/Hebrew Bible at the University of Manchester for many years, is a former Secretary of the Society, and was President of the Society for 2016. The series is published by Bloomsbury T&T Clark, and marketed as ‘T&T Clark Study Guides to the Old Testament’.

It is the hope of the Society that these Guides will stimulate in their readers an appreciation of the body of literature whose study is at the heart of all the Society’s activities.

The volumes of the second series published to date are:

  • Leviticus: The Priestly Vision of Holiness, by Philip Peter Jenson (2021)
  • Numbers: The Road to Freedom, by Eryl W. Davies (2015)
  • Joshua: Crossing Divides, by J. Gordon McConville (2013)
  • 1 & 2 Samuel: A Kingdom Comes, by David G. Firth (2013)
  • 1 & 2 Kings: History and Story in Ancient Israel, by Lester L. Grabbe (2017)
  • 1 & 2 Chronicles: A Message to Yehud, by Leslie C. Allen (2021)
  • Ezra-Nehemiah: Israel’s Quest for Identity, by Lena-Sofia Tiemeyer (2017)
  • Job: Where Shall Wisdom Be Found?, by Katharine J. Dell (2013)
  • Proverbs: Wisdom Calls, by Zoltán Schwáb (2023)
  • Song of Songs: The Bible’s Only Love Poem, by J. Cheryl Exum (2022)
  • Isaiah: A Paradigmatic Prophet and His Interpreters, by C.L. Crouch and Christopher B. Hays (2022)
  • Jeremiah: Prophecy in a Time of Crisis, by Mary E. Mills (2015)
  • Lamentations, by Jill Middlemas (2020)
  • Daniel: Sovereignty, Human and Divine, by Ernest C. Lucas (2023)
  • Joel, Obadiah, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, by Tchavdar Hadjiev (2020)
  • Amos: Justice and Violence, by Walter J. Houston (2015)
  • Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi: Return and Restoration, by Michael Stead (2022)

All volumes are available for purchase through the Bloomsbury website.

Earlier series of OT Guides

The first full series of Study Guides to the books of the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible produced by the Society for Old Testament Study was edited by Norman Whybray and published by JSOT Press (later Sheffield Academic Press). The following volumes appeared in the series:

  • Genesis 1–11, by John Rogerson (1991)
  • Genesis 12–50, by R.W.L. Moberly (1992)
  • Exodus, by William Johnstone (1990)
  • Leviticus, by Lester L. Grabbe (1993)
  • Numbers, by Gordon J. Wenham (1997)
  • Deuteronomy, by Ronald E. Clements (1989)
  • Joshua, by Adrian H.W. Curtis (1994)
  • Judges, by Andrew D.H. Mayes (1985)
  • Ruth and Esther, by Katrina J.A. Larkin (1996)
  • 1 & 2 Samuel, by Robert P. Gordon (1984)
  • 1 & 2 Kings, by Iain W. Provan (1997)
  • 1 & 2 Chronicles, by Gwilym H. Jones (1993)
  • Ezra and Nehemiah, by H.G.M. Williamson (1987)
  • Job, by John H. Eaton (1985)
  • Psalms, by John Day (1992)
  • Proverbs, by James D. Martin (1995)
  • Ecclesiastes, by R. Norman Whybray (1989)
  • The Song of Songs, by Athalya Brenner (1989)
  • Isaiah 1–39, by John Barton (1995)
  • The Second Isaiah, by R. Norman Whybray (1983)
  • Isaiah 56–66, by Grace I. Emmerson (1992)
  • Jeremiah, by Robert P. Carroll (1989)
  • Ezekiel, by Henry McKeating (1993)
  • Daniel, by Philip R. Davies (1985)
  • Hosea, by Graham I. Davies (1993)
  • Amos, by A. Graeme Auld (1986)
  • Jonah and Lamentations, by Robert B. Salters (1994)
  • Micah, Nahum, Obadiah, by Rex Mason (1991)
  • Zephaniah, Habakkuk, Joel, by Rex Mason (1994)
  • Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, by Richard J. Coggins (1987)

In earlier times, the Society produced a number of ‘Books of the Old Testament in Colloquial Speech’ published by the National Adult School Union. Six volumes appeared in that series:

  • Genesis, by Theodore H. Robinson (1924)
  • Samuel, by John Skinner (1925)
  • Isaiah, by J.B. Allan (1930)
  • Jeremiah, by Adam C. Welch (1924)
  • Amos, by Theodore H. Robinson (1922)
  • Micah and Habakkuk, by John Naish and R.B.Y. Scott (1934)

The Society also sponsored four volumes of Hebrew text with grammatical notes and vocabulary within the wider series of ‘Texts for Students’ published by SPCK:

  • Ruth, by Archibald R.S. Kennedy (1928)
  • Psalms, Book III (Psalms 73–89), by William O.E. Oesterley (1933)
  • Psalms, Book IV (Psalms 90–106), by William O.E. Oesterley (1936)
  • Amos, by Theodore H. Robinson (1923)