Return To Me: A Biblical Theology of Repentance
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IVP Academic / 2015 / Paperback

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Return To Me: A Biblical Theology of Repentance

IVP Academic / 2015 / Paperback

In Stock
Stock No: WW826377

Product Description

"Return to me, says the LORD of hosts, and I will return to you," (Zech 1:3 ESV).

Repentance concerns the repair of a relationship with God disrupted by human sin. All the major phases of church history have seen diversity and controversy over the doctrine. The first of Luther's famous ninety-five theses nailed to the church door in Wittenburg in 1517 stated that 'the entire life of believers should be one of repentance'. In recent times, two divisive debates within evangelicalism over 'lordship salvation" and "hypergrace" have had repentance at their core.

The theme of repentance is evident in almost every Old and New Testament corpus. However, it has received little sustained attention over the past half-century of scholarship, which has been largely restricted to word studies or focused on a particular text or genre. Studies of the overall theology of the Bible have typically given the theme only passing mention.

In response, Mark Boda offers a comprehensive overview of the theological witness of Scripture to the theme of repentance in this New Studies in Biblical Theology volume. The key to understanding is not simply to be found in word studies, but also in the broader meaning of texts as these communicate through a variety of words, images and stories. The importance of repentance in redemptive history is emphasized. It is fundamentally a return to intimate fellowship with the triune God, our Creator and redeemer. This relational return arises from the human heart and impacts attitudes, words and actions.

About the Series:
Addressing key issues in biblical theology, the works comprising New Studies in Biblical Theology are creative attempts to help Christians better understand their Bibles. The NSBT series is edited by D. A. Carson, aiming to simultaneously instruct and to edify, to interact with current scholarship and to point the way ahead.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 208
Vendor: IVP Academic
Publication Date: 2015
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0830826378
ISBN-13: 9780830826377
Series: New Studies in Biblical Theology

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Author Bio

Mark J. Boda (PhD, University of Cambridge) is professor of Old Testament at McMaster Divinity College and professor in the Faculty of Theology at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario. He is the author of numerous books, including and , a commentary on 1 & 2 Chronicles, and studies of Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi. He is coeditor of the (3 volumes).


I have not found another book that sets out to treat repentance in quite the way that Mark Boda has: he patiently, thoroughly and effectively works his way through Scripture to learn what repentance means and what it looks like in each canonical corpus, covering not only commonly used words but also the fundamental concepts.
-D. A. Carson

Mark Boda has shown himself to be a master of exegetical analysis and theological reflection. He traces repentance in both its relational and behavioral dimensions, both of which call for faith and trust. As he unfolds the richness of biblical teaching about repentance and its significance, we are called again to 'return to the Lord.' Pastors will be motivated by this book to engage their congregations in a study of repentance and a recommitment to it.
-John H. Walton,
professor of Old Testament, Wheaton College and Graduate School

In Return to Me Mark Boda does an outstanding job of explicating the oft-neglected theme of repentance, moving across the canon as he demonstrates the important role of this theme within biblical theology. A welcome new addition to the New Studies in Biblical Theology series. I recommend it heartily.
-J. Daniel Hays,
dean of the Pruet School of Christian Studies and professor of biblical studies, Ouachita Baptist University

In Return to Me Mark Boda has made his immense scholarship on repentance and penitential prayer accessible to all who want to study this critical biblical-theological concept in Scripture. As he moves from Genesis to Revelation, his stimulating study is exhaustive and demonstrates the richness and extensive scope of the theme. All serious students of the Bible, but particularly pastors and seminarians, will benefit from his impressive work. I have learned much from Mark, and you will as well.
-Tremper Longman III,
Robert H. Gundry Professor of Biblical Studies, Westmont College

Mark Boda begins this book with a great quote from Luther affrirming that 'the entire life of believers should be one of repentance.' So repentance is not just for gross wrongdoers or people who have turned right away from God. It is for all of us. Most of the book then treats the biblical material book by book, even passage by passage, which will make it especially useful for Bible study and for preaching. It's not a book to read in one go. Read it section by section and let it draw you to God. But Dr. Boda doesn't stop at the book-by-book treatment, and he is especially illuminating when he stands back and relects on the material as a whole.
-John Goldingay

Editorial Reviews

"This volume [is] an immensely helpful addition to the library of any student, scholar, pastor, or teacher in biblical and theological studies."
"Boda's book will serve pastors and scholars well in showing that repentance is neither mechanical nor forced upon people in the Bible's presentation; rather, it springs from a deeply personal encounter between sinful people and a holy God."

Product Reviews

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  1. Jimmy Reagan
    Leesville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Thorough and Helpful!
    June 12, 2015
    Jimmy Reagan
    Leesville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Here is a volume the New Studies In Biblical Theology (NSBT) series that tackles the theological hot-potato issue of repentance. Author Mark Boda strives to give us a biblical theology of repentance with this volume in the series edited by the well-known D.A. Carson.

    The most valuable feature of this book is the in-depth tracing of repentance in every part of Scripture. He divides the Old Testament in the Jewish way as he feels that is more sensible for following repentance through the Bible. He has strong convictions about the Word of God, which I appreciate. He feels the typical approach of viewing the subject through the definitions of the words involved is insufficient. Following that theory, he traces more of the big picture of repentance. Repentance is more in some parts of the Bible than others, but he succeeds in finding what degree repentance is there. He is thorough.

    It was surprising that the book is 80% Old Testament, but perhaps that is only because the New Testament talks much less of it. I found it easy to agree with many things he said. It seemed a little much to say repentance was a big theme of John when the word is only mentioned once. Still, you felt in the hands of a capable scholar as you read.

    He references the theological battles involving repentance, but really does not address them. He seemed to want to lay the data out there so others could take it into the battle and think for themselves. I can not imagine anyone writing on this subject again without consulting this volume. For this volume set out to do, it succeeded all the way.

    I received this book free from the publisher. 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.
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