Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Book Review: The Whole Bible Story

The book The Whole Bible Story by Dr. William H. Marty wasn’t quite what I expected, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t what it says it is. From the title, I expected a story and pictured myself curling up in a corner of my couch with a nice cup of coffee to savor the most precious story in the world told in simple story form.

That’s not what this is.

In the introduction, though, Dr. Marty tells why he wrote the book. A friend of his asked him for a Bible, but found herself overwhelmed by it. She didn’t know where to start. Dr. Marty wrote The Whole Bible Story to help people like her.

This is a history book.

In it, Dr. Marty tells the historical narrative of the Bible. For understanding, he has broken this narrative down into 19 chronological segments, concluding with an epilogue based on Revelation. To avoid confusing the reader, literary forms of the Bible other than historical narrative, such as wisdom literature, law, prophecy, and epistles (letters), are not included in this book.

Within each chapter, Dr. Marty tells the history once with some interpretation, commentary, and explanation as he sees needed to help the reader understand what’s going on. Then he tells it once more for review—this time, just the facts. I appreciated this summary the most.

Readers like Dr. Marty’s friend who want to gain a simple understanding of the scope and sequence of Bible events will find this book to be a valuable tool. I thank Bethany House Publishers for sending a complimentary copy for my review.

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