Carta Publishing: 3 New Titles, at Introductory Discount

Carta 25 Off Banner

 

Carta–one of my favorite publishers–has just announced the release of some new titles. As with anything I’ve seen from Carta, they each look fascinating and thorough, even if the books themselves are brief.

Thanks to Carta, readers of Words on the Word (and anyone, really) can get 25% off a Web order at Carta’s online store. Simply click on any cover image below to go to that title, and enter the code 25-off to receive the discount. The offer is good through December 15 (UPDATE: December 31) or so.

Jerusalem City of the Great King

1. Jerusalem: City of the Great King, by R. Steven Notley (whose excellent works I have reviewed here and here)

This volume, the second of four in The Carta New Testament Atlas series, presents the latest advances in the history and archaeology of Jerusalem. The last fifty years in particular have seen significantly increased efforts to discover the city’s past. New finds every year render what is previously written almost out of date before the ink is dry. With an acknowledgement of this reality, together with a recognition that much of the Old City of Jerusalem remains inaccessible to archaeological investigation, the present work lays its shoulder to the challenge.

2. Understanding the Boat from the Time of Jesus: Galilean Seafaring, by Shelley Wachsmann

Understanding the BoatYes, an entire book (even if only 40 pages) devoted to understanding the state of the boat in Jesus’ time. When I flipped it open yesterday, I found myself drawn to and reading the two-page glossary of terms first! It’s a good sign that even the glossary is interesting. I’m excited to dig in to this one. Here’s the publisher’s description:

The ancient boat from the Sea of Galilee exhibited at the Yigal Allon Museum at Kibbutz Ginosar speaks of pivotal times on the lake two millennia ago, when an itinerant rabbi walked its shores and sailed its waters with his followers, and changed the world forever.

This volume aims to give the non-expert reader an in-depth understanding of the boat, the story of her discovery and excavation and, most importantly, her significance for illuminating Jesus’ ministry by helping us better understand its contemporaneous milieu of seafaring and fishing on the Sea of Galilee.

3. Understanding the Life of Jesus: An Introductory Atlas, by Michael Avi-Yonah, updated by R.Steven Notley

Understanding the Life of JesusUnderstanding the land of Jesus is a necessary component to comprehending the message he proclaimed. From the beginning of the four Gospels until their end, the Evangelists assume that we possess an intimate knowledge of the historical and geographical stage onto which Jesus stepped.

For most Christian readers this is unfortunately not true. Many have not had the opportunity to visit the Holy Land. Even for those who have, it can prove to be a confusing experience. Much about life in this land has changed over the course of two millennia.…

It is hoped that the maps [in this book] and the brief texts that accompany them can serve as a guide for the Christian reader to navigate the geographical stages in the Gospel accounts. …May the reader be aided in their pursuit to follow the steps of the Master and to grasp more clearly the message he preached.

As I have a chance to explore these titles more, I’ll report back. Again, the code is 25-off at Carta’s online store. (UPDATE 2: This code is good for the titles above and anything else in the store, not the least of which is this beauty of a book.) Also, if you have 13 seconds, are on Twitter, and like to share your opinions about printed maps, check out this poll, which particularly has the last title above in mind.

 


 

View my reviews of Carta works here. Check out their site here, and go here to see their works via Hendrickson, their U.S. distributor. For the next few weeks, however, the titles above are only available through Carta’s site.

Biblia Hebraica Quinta (BHQ): Genesis!!

Though it’s been long in coming, the Biblia Hebraica Quinta (BHQ) is meant to supercede the current scholarly edition of the Hebrew Bible, the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS).

What is the BHQ? Start here and you’ll get a good grasp of it. I updated my readers in 2014 with what was then some new information. To my great surprise, in a .pdf from Hendrickson Publishers today, I saw a cover image for the Genesis volume!

Look on the far right:

 

BHQ Genesis

 

So new is it that Amazon and Hendrickson both don’t have it listed by ISBN or any other means. Hopefully it really will show up soon!

UPDATE: I have received word that the expected release date is Spring 2016.

From the Publishers Who Brought Us The Sacred Bridge: In the Master’s Steps

In the Master's StepsFar and away, The Sacred Bridge is the best Bible atlas–and one of the most impressive books–I’ve ever used. Now Carta is beginning to publish bite-sized adaptations from that massive and beautiful work. In the Master’s Steps: The Gospels in the Land is Volume 1 of The Carta New Testament Atlas, to be released in four total volumes. In the Master’s Steps is “partially excerpted” from The Sacred Bridge (TSB). (EDIT/UPDATE: Volume 2 will not be an excerpt from TSB–it’s a new work.)

The hope of the book, author R. Steven Notley writes, “is that a better understanding of the physical setting and events that framed the life of Jesus can assist us to hear more clearly the message he proclaimed.” Or, as St. Jerome puts it (quoted in this book):

Five gospels record the life of Jesus. Four you will find in books and the one you will find in the land they call Holy. Read the fifth gospel and the world of the four will open to you.

Those of us who have not yet had occasion to travel to Israel will have to settle for books such as Notley’s. However, as one makes her or his way through Notley’s careful writing, the vivid images, and the flawlessly rendered maps–one realizes there is no settling with this book. It’s the next best thing until such a day as one can make it to the Holy Land.

This book does not differ very much from its corresponding TSB sections, though this one is intended for a wider, more popular audience. Owners of TSB do not need to buy this volume, which does, however, carry with it the advantage of being portable, affordable, and concisely addressing the life of Jesus. If you don’t have TSB and are interested in geography and the New Testament, definitely pick up this work.

A few highlights in review:

Like all Carta books I’ve put my hands on, this one is of high quality. It’s paperback, but the thick, semi-glossy paper helps the full-color images really pop, and is perfect for making marginal notes in pencil.

As with The Sacred Bridge there is an index of place names, but not an index of Scripture references. Notley includes plenty of references, especially at the multiple points where he seeks to explain what could be, in fact, a harmony of apparently divergent gospel accounts when it comes to certain geographical details. Or if no harmonization is possible, Notley at least offers side-by-side comparisons.

The content of In the Master’s Steps is culled from chapter 22 of The Sacred Bridge, which, as it turns out, is the chapter I chose to profile most in-depth in my TSB review. Rather than repeat myself here, I simply refer you to my section 4 (“Case Study: The Sacred Bridge on The Holy Gospels”) here. Most, if not all, of what I say about the content there would apply to this book under review.

Here are the chapters of In the Master’s Steps:

  1. The Birth of Jesus and the Flight into Egypt
  2. The Ministry of John and the Baptism of Jesus
  3. The Travels of Jesus
  4. The Sea of Galilee: Development of an Early Christian Toponym
  5. The First-century Environs of the Sea of Galilee
  6. The Last Days of Jesus
  7. Jesus and the Myth of an Essene Quarter in Jerusalem
  8. The Arrest and Death of Jesus
  9. From the Empty Tomb to the Road to Emmaus

Okay, I will quote this one helpful paragraph that leads off chapter 5 of In The Master’s Steps:

Events recorded in the ministry of Jesus outside of Jerusalem are primarily located in the region around the Sea of Galilee, specifically in the north and northwest area of the lake. The Gospels are an important historical witness for Jewish settlement in this region. Scholarship seldom notes that for many of these settlements, their first mention in the literary witnesses is in the New Testament. After a confrontation in the synagogue in Nazareth, his boyhood home, Jesus relocated to Capernaum on the Sea of Galilee (Mt 4:13; Mk 1:21; Lk 4:31). This village would become the center of his ministry in the region. We now turn our attention to settlements around the Sea of Galilee that find mention in the New Testament.

Here is a sample of the graphics and maps to be enjoyed (click on each image to enlarge):

 

Last Days of Jesus
Carta Caption: The arrest, interrogation and execution of Jesus

 

Around the Lake of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee) (Carta's caption)
Around the Sea of Galilee (Carta’s caption)

 

To book’s hope, to revisit it again, “is that a better understanding of the physical setting and events that framed the life of Jesus can assist us to hear more clearly the message he proclaimed.” Reading through In the Master’s Steps will certainly offer such an understanding for the teacher, student, reader, or person of faith who picks up the book. The connections between geography and theological applications are not often made explicit here, but the reader will have more than enough historical background and imagery to begin to make those associations for herself or himself.

 


 

Many thanks to the good folks at Carta for sending the book. They didn’t ask for a review, so I write this of my own volition! I think they are one of the finest publishers in the business today. Check out their site here, and go here to see their works via Hendrickson, their U.S. distributor.

The Best Bible Atlas Ever, Cheaper Than It’s Ever Been

Front Cover

 

The best Bible atlas ever, Carta’s Sacred Bridge, is now cheaper than it’s ever been, thanks to a new distribution partnership between Carta Jerusalem and Hendrickson Publishers.

You can find it, for under $90, here at Hendrickson’s site. The accompanying younger sibling volume, Carta’s New Century Handbook and Atlas of the Bible, is $37.

HT: Brian Davidson.

New Hebrew Reader’s Bible: 50% Off at ETS, SBL/AAR

BHS Reader's Edition

 

Hendrickson has published a new Hebrew Reader’s Bible. (See more here.) They’ve also posted a sample pdf online, which features the book of Obadiah (good choice!).

You order now through CBD or Amazon… OR… if you want it at 50% off, you can go to Hendrickson’s booth at the upcoming ETS (booth 222) and SBL/AAR (booth 718) conferences, and find it in its two different bindings, priced at $29.97 (from $59.95 retail) and $39.97 (from $79.95).

New Hebrew Reader’s Bible This Fall

BHS Reader's EditionThis fall Hendrickson will publish a new Hebrew Reader’s Bible.

Hendrickson says it is:

A helpful language reference tool for students, pastors, and scholars. The BHS Reader’s Edition is for those who have a basic understanding of Biblical Hebrew and desire to read and study the Hebrew Bible. With this book alone (and a year’s study of Hebrew), students are able to read the Hebrew Bible in its entirety.

Zondervan already has such a Bible, which is the first Hebrew Bible from which I ever read (cue strings). But BHS Reader’s Edition has vocabulary helps for even more words, as well as verb parsings.

Here are the main features, in the words of the publisher:

  • Complete text of the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia, checked against the Leningrad Codex
  • All words that occur fewer than 70 times are parsed and contextually defined in the apparatus
  • Glossary listing of all other words
  • Improved layout of poetic text
  • All weak verb forms are parsed
  • High quality paper does not bleed through

UPDATE: One of the authors (not Moses, though) notes that it includes full Hebrew paradigms, too. Looks like it will really be a one-stop shop for Hebrew Bible reading!

You can pre-order now through CBD or Amazon (affiliate link that helps support Words on the Word).

Once I get a look, I’ll report back!

Biblia Hebraica Quinta (BHQ) Update: “State of the Edition”

The Biblia Hebraica Quinta (BHQ) will supercede the current scholarly edition of the Hebrew Bible, the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (BHS).

I reviewed the BHS module in Accordance Bible Software here, and posted at length about the BHQ here, if you want a primer. Short version: Emanuel Tov says it is “much richer in data, more mature, judicious and cautious than its predecessors. It heralds a very important step forward in the BH series,” though he notes that its notations are “more complex” and “less user-friendly for the non-expert.”

Here is BHQ on Amazon; here it is at Hendrickson Publishers’ site.

Hendrickson sent out an update today with the BHQ publishing schedule as it currently stands. Most volumes are “in preparation,” but the schedule (available here) notes that Ezekiel (ed. by Johan Lust) is coming in 2016 and Numbers (ed. by Martin Rösel) is coming in 2017.