Theopolis ArticlesFilter

  • Yoram Hazony and the Deception of Isaac

    Perhaps one of the most stimulating sections of Yoram Hazony’s The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture addresses the question of how we are to discern the meaning of biblical narratives, especially how biblical narratives might present arguments of a more general nature. Hazony quotes John Barton’s remarks about the difficulty of recognizing the moral stance of the […]

  • Enduring Divine Absence: The Challenge of Modern Atheism – A Review

    In this slender volume, Joseph Minich (Ph.D. student at the University of Dallas) attempts to answer some of the deepest questions of human existence. With his honesty, his probing questioning, his wide reading, and his ability to plunge beneath superficial answers, he provides a helpful source of reflection for fellow pilgrims. He admits he has […]

  • Adele Berlin, Poetics and Interpretation of Biblical Narrative

    Adele Berlin, Poetics and Interpretation of Biblical Narrative Sheffield, England: Almond Press, 1983. Reviewed by Peter J. Leithart This volume is the ninth in the “Bible and Literature Series” under the general editorship of David M. Gunn. According to its author, who teaches Hebrew at the University of Maryland, the book is an effort to describe […]

  • Umberto Cassuto and the Documentary Hypothesis

    Several years ago, the Wall Street Journal gave prominent recognition to a book called Who Wrote the Bible? The book was a popularization of the famous “Documentary Hypothesis,” which claims that the Pentateuch was not the work of Moses, but was a (rather incompetent) pastiche of contradictory sources written much later in Israel’s history. This theory labelled the four […]

  • To Take Place: Toward Theory in Ritual

    Jonathan Z. Smith, To Take Place: Toward Theory in Ritual (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987). Reviewed by Peter J. Leithart. The philosophes of the 18th century often attacked Christendom using the tools of anthropology and comparative religion. Rousseau contrasted the idyllic equality of primitive, natural peoples with the bondage of life in society. Diderot explicitly contrasted Christian sexual […]

  • The Rise of Magic in Early Medieval Europe

    Valerie I. J. Flint, The Rise of Magic in Early Medieval Europe (Princeton University Press, 1991). Reviewed by Peter J. Leithart. Valerie I. J. Flint, Professor of History at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, is refreshingly candid about her reasons for undertaking a study of The Rise of Magic in Early Medieval Europe. Unfortunately, her reasons are […]

  • Malachi Martin, The Keys of This Blood: The Struggle for World Dominion Between Pope John Paul II, Mikhail Gorbachev & the Capitalist West

    Malachi Martin, The Keys of This Blood: The Struggle for World Dominion Between Pope John Paul II, Mikhail Gorbachev & the Capitalist West (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1990). Reviewed by Peter J. Leithart. The subtitle of this massive volume gives a good idea of its major theme. Martin, the hard-hitting former Jesuit, examines the three major […]

  • Understanding Russia

    Ewa Majewska Thompson: Understanding Russia: The Holy Fool in Russian Culture Ewa M. Thompson is Professor and Chairman of the Department of German and Slavic Studies at Rice University. In this seminal study, she investigates the concept of the “holy fool” as it exists in Russian culture and civilization. While this might seem a specialized and […]

  • Cornelius van der Waal, “The Covenantal Gospel”

    The Covenantal Gospel was the last book written by the remarkable South African theologian and exegete Cornelius van der Waal. Two other works of van der Waal’s have been translated: Hal Lindsey and Biblical Prophecy, and Search the Scriptures. Because this book was written in 1979, it does not include any interaction with the “five-point covenant model” advocated […]

  • Foucault’s Pendulum

    Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose was certainly one of the best literary works of the past decade, though the film version hardly measured up to it. Now Eco has given us a new novel, Foucault’s Pendulum. Like Rose, Foucault’s Pendulum reflects on the limitations of human knowledge, and on man’s desire to play […]