Mark Boda’s New Book on Repentance in Scripture (Gupta)

R2MOver the summer, Mark Boda published a new book entitled Return to Me: A Biblical Theology of Repentance (IVP, 2015). Boda is a well-respected OT scholar at McMaster Divinity College.

About nine months ago or so, Boda kindly sent me a copy of the manuscript because I was working on research related to this subject. I was very impressed with his work. Firstly, I value that he allows for different parts of Scripture to have their own nuances regarding repentance. Secondly, I appreciate that he did not just treat the Old Testament, but includes a short, but important section on the New Testament. The significance of this work, for my part, is that Boda avoids the fallacy of treating the OT as covenantally-focused (expectation and obedience), and the NT as one-side (“grace only”). Rather, Boda demonstrates how patterns of divine-human interaction and expectation continue from OT to NT – repentance (from a relational-perspective) is present and important in the NT in ways congruous with the OT.

I think that the subject was too large for Boda to do more than soundings and big-picture work, and his NT section is very cursory, but this is a major step in the right direction of thinking about covenant, obedience, and repentance in a holistic and whole-Bible way. I hope someone will continue to study how covenantal repentance is at work in the New Testament (in its pluriform ways).

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Mapping Your Academic Career – with Dr. Gary M. Burge (Gupta)

MACYesterday I assembled a comfy IKEA chair in my office, so I wanted to have a sit-down and do some reading. I read through Gary Burge’s new book Mapping Your Academic Career: Charting the Course of a Professor’s Life (IVP, 2015).

This book helps professors at all stages (but I would say especially those in early years) think about who they are, how they exist in their academic world, and it helps them plan for the future in terms of success and service. Burge’s book has many insightful anecdotes and is informed by psychology, even though Burge does not claim to be an expert in psychology.

In many ways, this book is very reassuring – especially knowing that lots of new faculty struggle with the same problems, insecurities, and lowpoints. Burge is very gracious, warm, and supportive.

At about $11 on Amazon, buying this book should be a no-brainer for un-tenured faculty, but again he has great advice for those in later stages of their career as well.