|In one volume you can find
a summary of the message of the Bible, historical, geographical and cultural
background, commentary that entertains and enlightens, and definitions
that clear up some of that religious jargon.
The authors, Jeffrey Geoghegan, Ph.D. and Michael Homan, Ph.D., of The Bible for Dummies describe this book as “your one-stop reference for understanding the Bible and its continuing impact on the political, religious, and artistic landscapes of our world.”
Their humorous approach creates an entertaining treatment of what some commentators have made seem dry and uninteresting. But they are respectful without even a hint of mockery. For instance in this excerpt:
“Abraham's initial stay in his Promised Land is actually quite short because a severe famine forces the people of Canaan to go to Egypt to find food. As Abraham and Sarah approach Egypt, Abraham realizes that, given Sarah's extreme beauty, the Egyptians might try to kill him to take her. You may be thinking, ‘She's 65 years old: And this was before Oil of Olay! How beautiful could she be?!’ Actually, plenty of 65-year-olds in this world are beautiful. Moreover, Sarah is going to live to be over twice her present age, so we should probably imagine her to still look rather ‘young for her age.’ ”
Besides retelling the Biblical narrative in a simple, clear manner, The Bible for Dummies includes geographical and historical information that are helpful in understanding the setting for the stories.
Any commentary will include the point of view, conclusions, and opinions of the author (authors) which make it necessary for the reader to use discernment.
The Bible for Dummies is a worthwhile
reference work (even for the non-dummy among us) that can be used as an
introduction to Biblical studies along with other reference materials.
It can't be a substitute for reading and studying the Bible itself, but
it can give the novice and the veteran Bible student a better understanding
of the Bible's message.