Back before Stonehenge or the wheel, back before the pyramids, math, or even the crudest writing existed, ancient peoples gathered and told stories. They told stories of how the world began, what the first people were like, and which of them were heroes or failures. They tried to make sense of the world around them and tried to sort out who the gods were and what those gods wanted from them.
More than ten thousand years later, one set of those stories has come down to us in the form of the Old Testament. It is the story of the Jewish people and their distinctive God, giving us a glimpse through story, song, history, and law of the rocky, raucous, faithful, fumbling beginnings of one of the oldest religions on earth.
Perhaps you think you know it. Think again.
This second course in Exploring the Bible: The Dickinson Series will help you better understand the Old Testament in the context of the world in which it was written. Use it as designed in small-group study or work with it on your own. Either way, you will come to a new appreciation for this amazing collection of ancient texts and the faith that they represent.
A detailed Leader's Guide for this study is sold separately. You can learn more about the series and how you can earn a Certificate in Biblical Literacy at exploringthebible.org.
Other volumes in the series include:
Volume 1: What Is the Bible?
Volume 3: Introducing the New Testament
PRAISE FOR EXPLORING THE BIBLE: THE DICKINSON SERIES
"Here is the most readable, complete, fair and accurate aid to the study of the Bible now available. I recommend it highly."
Dr. Harvey Cox
Hollis Research Professor of Divinity
Harvard Divinity School
"Fortunate will be the readers who take up the study of these materials. These books constitute a compelling introduction to serious study, with intentional pedagogy and fresh articulation. They are accessible without dumbing down, reaching those who want to know about the Bible without compromising either their faith or their wise judgment. Holding such a resource in one’s hands is the beginning of a fresh exploration that holds great promise."
Dr. Walter Brueggemann
Professor Emeritus of Old Testament
Columbia Theological Seminary
"I am much impressed by the comprehensive, accessible, and engaging quality of this series. If you have been intimidated by the Bible, if you have been reluctant to launch a study of the Bible, then Exploring the Bible offers a grand introduction to Scripture. Here the wisdom of the Bible is not only explored and explicated but also applied. Exploring the Bible is easily adaptable to churches and Bible study groups of all sizes and inclinations. Here’s a wonderful addition to our tools for helping Christians grow in their faith."
Bishop Will Willimon
Professor of the Practice of Christian Ministry
Duke Divinity School
"Exploring the Bible: The Dickinson Series is a magnificent Bible study resource. The questions we all have about the Bible are addressed in clear, accessible, and often witty language, and questions we didn’t even know to ask are introduced in lively and provocative ways. Those who have studied the Bible for years will find their understanding deepened, and those for whom the Bible is a new and unfamiliar land will find a reliable roadmap. The Leader’s Guides are filled with stimulating teaching suggestions."
Dr. Thomas G. Long
Bandy Professor of Preaching
Candler School of Theology