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How the Bible Is Written: Faith and Literary Form

Evening Program with Book Signing

Thursday, October 22, 2020 - 6:45 p.m.
Code: 1M2079
$30 - Member
$45 - Non-Member
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Please Note: This program has a rescheduled date (originally April 23, 2020).

Almost everyone—believers, nonbelievers, and everyone in between—reads the Bible for its content, and for good reason. Its message continues to resonate, even from a distance of 3,000 years. The ethics, morality, and theology of the Bible inform our contemporary world in manifold ways, while the history revealed in the Bible also echoes to the present day.

But how were the biblical books composed and what can be said about the literary style of the Bible’s exquisite prose and poetry? Biblical scholar Gary Rendsburg, a specialist in ancient Israel and Egypt and medieval Hebrew manuscripts, explores how the ancient Israelite literati conveyed their message to the people who consumed the literature that eventually found its way into the canonical Biblical text.

He discusses how ancient wordsmiths used every device imaginable—wordplay, alliteration, repetition and variation, dialect representation, and more—to engage their audiences. He also discusses how texts were performed or presented orally, enabling people to listen to the text.

Rendsburg leads a literary journey back in time, imagining ourselves as listeners to the poets, prophets, and storytellers of ancient Israel.

His book How the Bible Is Written (Hendrickson) is available for sale and signing.

S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)