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Life In Biblical Israel (Lai) Hardcover – Jan 1 2002

5.0 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 440 pages
  • Publisher: Westminster John Knox Pre; 1 edition (Jan. 1 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0664221483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0664221485
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 2.8 x 25.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #278,272 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"Overall, the book is superb, overflowing with insights into the Biblical world." -- Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 2002

About the Author

King is Professor of Biblical Studies, Department of Theology, Boston College. He has spent more than 3 decades teaching the Hebrew Bible and doing fieldwork in biblical archaeology. He is a Priest of the Archdiocese of Boston.

Stager is Dorot Professor of the Archaeology of Israel at Harvard University and Director of the Harvard Museum. For the last 15 years he has directed the Leon Levy Expedition to the Philistine port of Ashkelon. Befor that, he directed excavations at Idalion in Cyprus and at ancient Carthage in Tunisia.

Douglas A. Knight is Drucilla Moore Buffington Professor of Hebrew Bible and professor of Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University. Knight is the author of Law, Power, and Justice in Ancient Israel and Rediscovering the Traditions of Israel.

Amy-Jill Levine is University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University and affiliate faculty at the Centre for the Study of Jewish-Christian Relations in Cambridge, UK. Levine is the author of The Misunderstood Jew and served as co-editor of The Jewish Annotated New Testament.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Though written for the layperson, this book is still an excellent resource for the scholar in Bible, ancient Near Eastern studies, or any study of culture. Life in Biblical Israel describes the setting of the Hebrew Bible, but not in terms of wars, leaders, and elite society. Professors King and Stager recognize, like Fernand Braudel and Annales historians, that a large part of society is often neglected by its own histories. Thus, they seek to describe how that silent majority lived their everyday lives. The authors of Life in Biblical Israel attempt to describe all of the aspects of the lifeways of the Israelites - how they produced their food, built their houses, procured water, defended their cities, organized their society, kept themselves healthy, expressed themselves through clothing, art, and music, and how they interacted with the divine.
For those skeptical of the Bible's credibility, the book may seem to be a simple attempt to draw archaeological correlations, that is artifactual evidence, for Biblical terminology. Certainly, the book does this, but not out of any theological or apologetic attempt to prove the Bible as accurate. Accepting that the archaeological record and the Bible provide two types of descriptions of the same society, King and Stager gather all of the information they can from both sources. The many photographs and drawings in the book show many examples from the archaeological source. A quick glance at the Scriptural Index at the back of the book shows how thoroughly the authors combed the Biblical text. At the same time, the authors use each source to supplement the defficiencies of the other. For example, artifacts can often be identified as to their uses, but they have no names in their native languages, and how they are used is often not known.
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By A Customer on March 29 2002
Format: Hardcover
As a student of archaeology with a particular interest in the biblical world, I have found few consistently excellent reference tools. "Life in Biblical Israel" is one of those tools. The indexes are clear, comprehensive, and exceedingly useful. I am impressed by the large number of high quality, integrated color illustrations and photographs that have been packed into this volume. Few other works on the market approach this number of color illustrations, and these volumes seem to sell for at least twice the cost of "Life in Biblical Israel." The authors' exploration of everyday life has illustrated details frequently, and unfortunately, overlooked by many scholars. I particularly enjoyed the interplay of current archaeological discoveries with the biblical text. This is a work that I shall value above all others on my ever-growing book shelf.
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Format: Hardcover
This book provides a comprehensive coverage of every aspect of daily life in the biblical period. Using their impressive and comprehensive knowledge of archaeology, text, history, and theory, the authors present the evidence that brings the peoples of these times to life in a clear and easy-to-read fashion. The information from the biblical text is analyzed in light of other written records from the ancient Near Eastern world, as well as through a detailed examination of the material culture from archaeological sites throughout the region. The text is complemented by a vast array of well-presented drawings and color photos, which help to illustrate the points made throughout the book. This book is an excellent resource for laypeople who wish to learn more about the subject and expand their understanding of biblical history, for students at all levels, as well as for professionals. This book is highly recommended; it is an extremely informative and enjoyable read.
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Format: Hardcover
There are many gems in this book that will explain otherwise difficult biblical texts. The authors are interested in using the latest archaeological data to shed light on the Scriptures (see, for example, King's earlier commentary on Jeremiah). It will take time for all of the information in this book to make it into popular biblical commentaries (it is cutting edge information, as the authors themselves are active archaeologists). This book is a concentrated collection of journal quality insights written at a popular level.
Before I bought this book, I heard one of the co-authors (Dr. Stager of Harvard) lecture on his contribution to the book. He is a master investigator of the ancient near eastern ideas of temple and garden. Stager brilliantly communicates how Israel's Temple and Garden Story relate to (and are informed by) their original contexts. Adjective fail me, I can only say that his work is staggering.
I would be remiss if I did not make this plug: the pictures alone are worth the price of the book. The book is printed completely on photo quality paper with full color images throughout.
This book is a must have for any student of archaeology, the Bible or Israel.
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