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The Books of the Old Testament

Reflections on Sacred Scripture

by Jeffrey A. Mirus

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Book Description

In the Spring of 2017, the author began to reread the Old Testament in order to note down the particular insights about each book which occurred to him as he entered the fullness of what Scripture calls man’s three score and ten. As the project continued, he began to write up his reflections and post them on CatholicCulture.org. The response being favorable, this grew into the project of commenting briefly on each book of the Bible. Two years later, the Old Testament has been completed, and there has been enough positive feedback to make the collected essays available as an ebook—offered in the hope that others too will find additional insights into God’s ways with the sons and daughters He so dearly loves.

Table of Contents

  • Introductory Note
  • Scripture is all about connections: Genesis
  • Called and gifted for glory: An unlikely lesson from Exodus?
  • Want to understand sexual morality? Read—and grasp—Leviticus.
  • Catholic Social Teaching: Rooted in Leviticus?
  • Priestly Atonement, by the Numbers
  • Making sense of the Old Testament God
  • Deuteronomy: On the importance of doing God’s will (contra mundum)
  • Taking Scripture to heart: Joshua’s great lesson
  • Judges: Every man did what was right in his own eyes.
  • Ruth shows family to be at the center of God’s plan
  • Samuel: A spiritual and political tale of two kings. Part one: Saul
  • Samuel: A spiritual and political tale of two kings. Part two: David
  • The folly of Kings, 1: Authority, infidelity and Providence
  • The folly of Kings, 2: Divine justice, Divine mercy, and true hope
  • Glimmerings from the First Book of Chronicles
  • Looking for Justice? Try the Second Book of Chronicles.
  • Ezra and the exiles: Teaching them—and us—to put God first
  • Nehemiah’s rightly ordered government
  • Tobit and Tobias? Their lives are just like ours!
  • Two strong women of the Old Testament: First, Judith
  • Two strong women of the Old Testament: Second, Esther
  • Job’s Controversial Innocence
  • The Psalms: Deep questions, with only hints for answers
  • Suffering in the Psalms
  • Redemption and Salvation in the Psalms
  • Proverbs, read spiritually
  • Vanity of vanities, all is vanity: Ecclesiastes
  • The Song of Songs: Yearning for fulfillment
  • The Wisdom of Solomon: Written for the 21st century?
  • Golden threads of Wisdom in the Book of Sirach
  • Isaiah: The Poet of Salvation
  • Jeremiah had nothing on us.
  • A modern lamentation, or jeremiad, on Church governance
  • Baruch: Jeremiah’s scribe, against hopelessness and idolatry
  • Ezekiel the Watchman: Terror, and Hope
  • Daniel: Champion, visionary, man of prayer
  • The “minor” prophets: Highly relevant today
  • The minor prophets: Varied voices, including our own
  • Four late minor prophets, plus Jonah as a bonus
  • 1 Maccabees: A shift in understanding salvation history
  • 2 Maccabees: Judaism in readiness