Monday, May 26, 2008

Hermeneutics: Principles and Process of Biblical Interpretation
Henry A. Virkler
Baker Academic (1995), Paperback, 264 pages

Author: Henry A. Virkler was Associate Professor of Psychology at the Psychological Studies Institute in Atlanta, GA. He earned a Master of Arts at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and a Ph.D. at Georgia State University. He specializes in the integration of theology and psychology.

Intention: To provide a text, written by a theologian, that translates "hermeneutical principles into practiced exegetical steps" (11).

Structure: The book chapters are grouped into four major sections, covering general matters, practical steps, special literary methods, and end matters.
  • General matters
    • 1-Introduction to Biblical Hermeneutic
    • 2-The History of Biblical Interpretation
  • Practical Steps
    • 3-Historical-Cultural and Contextual-Analysis
    • 4-Lexical-Syntactical Analysis
    • 5-Theological Analysis
  • Special Literary Methods
    • 6-Similes, Metaphors, Proverbs, Parables, and Allegories
    • 7-Types, Prophecy, and Apocalyptic Literature
  • End Matters
    • 8-Applying the Biblical Message: a proposal for the transcultural problem
    • Epilogue: The Task of the Minister
    • Summary

Each chapter begins with learning objectives and ends with a summary. Most contain "Brain Teasers" to help students work through the information and "Suggestions for Further Reading."

Three appendixes provide topical annotated bibliographies.
  • Hermeneutics from Various Theological Viewpoints
  • Readings on Revelation, Inspiration, and Inerrancy from a Variety of Theological Perspectives
  • Bibliography on Sensus Plenior
The work ends with a General Bibliography, a Subject Index, and a Scripture Index.

by Vern S, Poythress


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