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Dictionary of Biblical Imagery
General Editors: Leland Ryken, James C. Wilhoit, Tremper Longman III

0830814515 Retail Price: $45.00
CenturyOne Price: $31.50
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Format: Hardcover, 1058pp.
ISBN: 0830814515
Publisher: Intervarsity Press
Pub. Date: November 1998

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From The Publisher:

Every reader of the Bible has encountered the powerful, comforting and sometimes puzzling imagery of Scripture. These concrete pictures with their hidden force have struck sharp and lasting impressions on our minds. Their imprint has etched itself on the language and grammar of Christian faith and Western culture.

Why then do traditional Bible dictionaries and reference works offer so little help to explorers of the Bible's galaxy of verbal pictures? They excel in describing the climate, borders and location of Galilee or Sinai. But they are often lind to the artistic expressions and deaf to the musical meanings that echo from within the world of the biblical text.

The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery is the first contemporary reference work dedicated to exploring the images, symbols, motifs, metaphors and literary patterns found in the Bible. More than that, it examines the Bible's universal archetypes or master images - including the plot motifs and character types that recur throughout life, literature and the Bible.

The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery explores the dazzling variety in which the Word of God comes dressed in the clothes of everyday life. It traces the trail of images from Eden to the New Jerusalem. It captures the plotted patterns of biblical narrative. It surveys the imaged texture of each book of the Bible.

Here is a Bible dictionary with a difference - an inviting, enlightening and indispensable companion to the reading, study, contemplation ad enjoyment of the Bible.

  • hundreds of articles on images, similies, metaphors and motifs of Scripture
  • encyclopedic scope--covers many topics not found in ordinary Bible dictionaries
  • accessible
  • fascinating for browsing
  • dozens of expert contributors
  • includes entries on all the important images essential to biblical and contemporary cultural literacy
  • helps readers understand the significance of the Bible's imagery
  • great resource for Bible study, teaching and preaching
  • 1999 Christianity Today Book of the Year


"InterVarsity Press is to be commended for boldly going where no Bible dictionary has gone before. Where else can you get articles on 'Apocalyptic' on the one hand and 'Dog' on the other, 'Battle Stories' on the one hand and 'Teeth' on the other, 'Rhetorical Patterns' on the one hand and 'Left, Left-Handed' on the other? Here we have a full-course meal for the heart and mind, which reminds us that while image is not everything, imagery often is; while plot is not the whole story, story is often the whole point. I don't often recommend dictionaries as good bedtime reading, but in this case I will make an exception. In short, sell the dog and buy this dictionary!"
—Ben Witherington III, professor of New Testament, Asbury Theological Seminary

"The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery is a creative and usable reference tool that will enable a wide range of Bible students to read the Word of God with fresh insight and new understanding. This informative and imaginative dictionary--unique in its purpose and approach--will prove to be immensely helpful for scholars, pastors, teachers and laypeople alike."
—David S. Dockery, president, Union University (Jackson, Tennessee)

"The human mind is a picture gallery, and we live by the images found in it. This massive and careful work can aid us all in glimpsing the multitudinous pictures that are given us in the Scriptures to transform our lives."
—Elizabeth Achtemeier, writer, lecturer, preacher

"People think with pictures in their heads. The Bible is God's picture book even though it is all in words. The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery helps us to see the verbal pictures that we may have missed and then helps us to make sense of them. The Dictionary is a helpful tool for Bible study--and it's even fun to read."
—Haddon Robinson, Harold John Ockenga Professor of Preaching, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton, Massachusetts)

Table of Contents

How to Use This Dictionary
Dictionary Articles
Scripture Index
Subject Index

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