To the Usual Suspects
One Word Questions
by John Goldingay
Paternoster Press, 1998
v + 202 pages, English
List Price: $12.99
The price at Eisenbrauns is awesome (today only for $1.60 plus $4.95 shipping). If you take advantage of this offer from Eisenbrauns or not, I hope that you will at least add this to your wish list. It is currently out of print, so you will most likely have to purchase it from a second-hand source.
What's it about?
This little book offers a view into the heart of John Goldingay, the Christian, the husband, friend, scholar, theologian, and biblical commentator. The order here is intentional, because the primary threads around which the tapestry of Goldingay's theological musings has been woven are his faith and his relationships, especially his relationship with his late wife, Ann. I prefer the American title because it communicates the purpose of the book more clearly. This book is about life, pain, faith, joy, tears, separations, and new blessings. I recently mentioned to some friends that reading through this book moved me like none other (save the Scriptures).
What the UK titles adds, is that each of the chapters is a one word topic, or question. In the preface, Goldingay states that this book was written in the few weeks prior to his move from the UK to Pasadena, California and was edited and prepared for publication during the few weeks after his arrival in the US. So, what you get is a quick, diary-like collection of sketches on living the Christian life, or walking on in the light of Christian faith. Goldingay does not tell you how to live the Christian life, but he removes the curtains shrouding his own life and experience and invites you to walk with him through some of the most trying, yet blessed days of his life.
What I found most interesting?
There are three things that fascinated me as I read through this book: the first was the story of his wife's struggle with MS, the second was his frequent comments on favorite music, musicians and movies, the third, was the way he walks through the OT applying its toughest lessons to life. Learning about MS from Goldingay's perspective has helped me to understand some of the difficulties those who suffer from this disease are having to deal with. I also enjoyed Goldingay's thoughtful engagement with the music and movies he enjoys. He values stories that are true to life; stories that do not make light of the joys and sorrows of life, but that do an excellent job at helping the audience to appreciate and enter into the emotions of life.
What else has Goldingay written?
If you have heard of John Goldingay at all it is probably with reference to either his three-volume Old Testament Theology or his three-volume commentary on Psalms. Here's a list of some of his works:
- Key Questions about Biblical Interpretation: Old Testament Answers (Baker Academic, forthcoming 2011)
- Key Questions about Christian Faith: Old Testament Answers (Baker Academic, 2010)
- New International Biblical Commentary
- The Old Testament for Everyone
- Genesis for Everyone: Chapters 1-16 (WJK Press, 2010)
- Exodus and Leviticus for Everyone (WJK Press, 2010)
- Numbers and Deuteronomy for Everyone (WJK Press, 2010)
- Joshua, Judges, and Ruth for Everyone (WJK Press, 2011)
- 1 & 2 Samuel for Everyone (WJK Press, 2011)
- with David Payne, Isaiah 40-55: A Critical and Exegetical Commentary International Critical Commentary Vol. 1 & Vol. 2 (T&T Clark, 2007)
- Psalms Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalms (Baker Academic, 2006-8) Best Price
- The Message of Isaiah 40-55: A Literary-Theological Commentary (T&T Clark, 2005)
- Models for Interpretation of Scripture (Clements, 2004)
- Old Testament Theology (IVP Academic, 2003, 2006, 2009)
- God's Prophet, God's Servant: A Study in Jeremiah and Isaiah 40-55 (Clements, 2002)
- Daniel Word Biblical Commentary (Word, 1989)
- Theological Diversity and the Authority of the Old Testament (Eerdmans, 1987)