A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results  -     By: Paul D. Wegner
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A Student's Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible: Its History, Methods and Results

InterVarsity Press / 2004 / Paperback

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Product Description

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 illustration, Paul D. Wegner gives an overview of the history and methods, aims and results of textual criticism. He explores original texts and fragments, examines errors and changes leading to discovery and a renewed confidence in the reliability of Scripture giving the reader an appreciation for the vast work that has been accomplished in preserving the text of Scripture. This work features black and white charts, photographs, and a glossary.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 208
Vendor: InterVarsity Press
Publication Date: 2004
Dimensions: 9 X 6 (inches)
ISBN: 0830827315
ISBN-13: 9780830827312
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

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.

Author Bio

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 (IVP, 2006), (Baker Academic, 2004) and (Kregel Academic, 2009).

Editorial Reviews

Wegner has provided teachers and students with a clearly written and wonderfully illustrated introduction to the practice of textual criticism of the entire Bible.
"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."
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!
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.
"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."
"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."

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  1. Michigan
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: Male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    An Essential Resource for Student's of Textual Criticism
    November 23, 2015
    John M Kight
    Michigan
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: Male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Paul D. Wegner is the Director of Academic Graduate Studies Program and Professor of Old Testament Studies at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. Wegner has a M.Div. and Th.M from Trinity Divinity School, and a Ph.D. from Kings College, University of London. Prior to his position at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, Wegner taught at Moody Bible Institute for roughly thirteen years in the Bible department and Phoenix Seminary for about eleven years as Professor of Old Testament. Wegner has written numerous articles in the field of biblical studies and textual criticism, authored several books, including, The Journey from Texts to Translations: The Origin and Development of the Bible (Baker Academic, 2004), Using Old Testament Hebrew in Preaching: A Guide for Students and Pastors (Kregel Academic, 2009), and contributed study notes for Habakkuk, Daniel, and an article on the reliability of the Old Testament for the highly acclaimed ESV Study Bible (Crossway, 2008). Wegner has consistently shown himself to be a competent scholar with a clear passion for bringing many of the conversations of the scholarly community in an accessible form to the classroom and pulpit.



    A Students Guide to Textual Criticism: Its History, Methods, and Results (IVP Academic, 2006) is a unique and accessible introductory guide through the trenches of the complexities that characterize the study of the textual criticism of the Bible. It is unique in that Wegner effectively covers both the Old Testament and New Testament in a single volume, and does so in tremendous detail. It is accessible in that Wagner is continually sensitive to the technicalities that often plague the conversations by building a language barrier between the expert and laity. This doesnt mean that Wegner avoids the technical terms that the reader needs to know, but rather he explains and illustrates them in a way that cultivates understanding. The book opens with a general introduction to the study of textual criticism, including the definition and importance of the study itself, the explanation of the various transmissional errors that occur in the Bible (i.e. homophony, haplography, dittography, etc.), as well as the transmission of the biblical texts themselves. The learned reader may be tempted to merely skim over this introductory section assuming little benefit, but this would only result in the bypass of one of the most helpful sections of the book. The novice readers will want to spend as much time here as possible, and mastery is recommended. Wegner provides a host of examples and illustrations as he sets the stage for the more detailed investigation ahead.

    The second and third sections of the book detail specified attention to both Old Testament and New Testament textual criticism. Both sections are thorough in examination and extremely user-friendly. In regards to the Old Testament, Wegner walks the reader through the history of Old Testament textual criticism and the methods with which such practice is best practiced. After walking the reader through Wegner provides two specific examples of how textual criticism works in practice, 1 Chronicles 6:40 and Hosea 7:14. Wegner closes the Old Testament section with a sizeable discussion on various sources closely associated with Old Testament Criticism. The same format is provided with regards to the New Testament textual criticism section. Here Wegner guides the reader through the history and practice of New Testament textual criticism and provides specific examples from Ephesians 1:1 and Romans 15:7. Subsequently, the discussion is directed upon the sources of New Testament textual criticismthe biblical papyri, uncial manuscripts, and minuscule manuscripts. With these two sections, both Old Testament and New Testament juxtaposed with one another the reader can quickly distinguish the difference between the two disciplines. Wegner also aids in this effort. The book closes with a look into other relevant text for the task of textual criticism, including early translations of the Old Testament and New Testament. The keen reader will certainly appreciate the inclusion of this section into the overall aim of the book, as some of these early versions of the biblical text become imperative the task at hand.

    A Students Guide to Textual Criticism: Its History, Methods, and Results is an essential resource for anyone interested in the underlying investigation of the Bible. Not only because the discipline of textual criticism, in general, is imperative to the preaching and teaching of the Bible, as Wegner makes clear, but he has labored to make the study accessible and comprehendible to the reader. Apart from the goldmine of information provided within the sections briefly described above, Wegner has also included relevant bibliographic material for further reading at the end of each section. Moreover, each section in the book is littered with helpful illustrations and photographs to better engage the reader with the groundwork taking place. Lastly, for quick reference Wegner has included a healthy 10-page glossary for relevant terms and an exhaustive name and subject index. If you are looking for an introduction to the complex world of textual criticism from a trusted and reliable source then A Students 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 couldnt recommend this resource enough. It will encourage and enhance your understand and confidence in the Bible.

    I received a review copy of this book in exchange for and honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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