May I have a moment of your time to plug a book?
Since it has been a loooong time since I’ve had formal courses in Scripture (and some of that wasn’t so great), I’ve determined I need some refreshers. I’ve been gathering materials and doing a little each day.
Regarding the Old Testament, may I recommend to my fellow priests, especially, A Catholic Introduction to the Bible: The Old Testament by John Bergsma and Brant Pitre published by Ignatius Press?
This is turning out to be a very good resource, especially in the sometimes murky front of the Bible.
These guys get the need to maintain an excellent approach to texts according to modern tools of scholarship. At the same time, they are rock solid faithful to the Church’s teachings and traditions. They seem to have taken their marching orders from Benedict XVI and his Verbum Domini. They’ve sought an integrated approach.
You might remember that Benedict, in the introduction to one of his Jesus of Nazarth volumes, said that we need to recover a way of Scripture that is faithful to the texts’ content, much as the Fathers read it. Without, of course, abandoning modern scholarship.
Also, quite helpful in the book, are frequent references to the CCC.
That said, I would like there to have been much more on the Psalms. As I’ve been reading the Office lately, I’ve been marking things mentally and then seeking greater understanding through some online resources (there are some good Protestant Scripture tools online with interlinear texts, etc.). The authors, while stressing the importance of the Psalms, don’t devote much time to them. One might respond that that, in itself, would take a large book and this book is intended as an introduction. They make the introduction, and move along. However, good bibliography is provided for further reading.
I warmly recommend this.