READING THE BIBLE WITH RABBI JESUS by Lois Tverberg is another addition to her fine series on using insights from Jewish and 1st Century AD Middle Eastern life for modern readers to better understand the Bible. This particular book focuses on the Old Testament — which, of course, was the Bible for all Jews in the time of Jesus — and how Jesus would have read and interpreted what was written in those texts that were already over 1000 years old by the time He arrived on the scene.
As in other books she has written, Tverberg first helps the reader to understand that the Greco-Roman culture that gave rise to European and then North American culture and soceity is really very different from the worldview of the ancient Israelites, as well as Jesus and His disciples. She shows how this is important in examples like the word “walk.” In Greek and English, it simply means to travel by foot, but in Hebrew the way one “walks” reflects your moral character. Then, Part Three, the author uses the foundation built up by the previous sections to bring greater clarity and insight to various familiar passages and parts of the Old Testament.
Since very few believers will ever travel to Israel or learn biblical Hebrew, Tverberg provides an invaluable service to Christian readers who want to better appreciate the Old Testament, so that it truly is the source of information about God’s holiness, grace and love that it is meant to be. Highly recommended!