Book Review: Biblical Exegesis: A Beginner's Handbook

Hayes and Holladay's "Biblical Exegesis" is very introductory book on, well, exegesis. The first chapter is the best, giving a clear explanation of what exegesis is and why it's so necessary; it's perhaps the best explanation I've read. The majority of the chapters are an overview of various forms of criticism, textual, historical, grammatical, literary, form, tradition, and redaction. The final chapter gives a sense of how the forms might be used together. Though the book overviews these forms, at 132 pages it obviously doesn't give the reader enough info to actually use them for exegesis; it truly is a beginner's handbook. Hayes and Holladay certainly have a less conservative view of the Bible than I do, yet their lack of depth is the primary reason why I can't really recommend this book. If you're interested in any of these forms, it would be better to find a book that can teach you how to do them.

Note: The Amazon link above is to the 3rd edition; I have the first edition.

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