Collected Writings of Les Rainey, Volume 2
Paperback, 614pp. Published by Gospel Folio Press, 304 Killaly St. West, Port Colborne, ON, Canada L3K 6A6. Available in UK from John Ritchie Ltd. Price £19.99, ISBN 978-1-897117-30-9.
Within this single volume three books are brought together on Old Testament studies.
The first, ‘The Bible in Brief: The Old Testament ’, divides the testament into four major parts, namely the Pentateuch, the historical writings, the wisdom writings and the prophetical books, each section having an introductory chapter. Within that framework each book of the Old Testament is briefly considered, the writer identifying a key word and verse, and providing a summary of its basic message with an accompanying outline.
The second ‘A Syllabus of the Scriptures: The Old Testament’ begins with a consideration of the structure of the scriptures and how the story of the Bible unfolds. Each book of the Old Testament is then, again, separately considered, this time in more depth with emphasis upon the place it has in the revelation of God’s ways with His people. Sometimes the writer gives a detailed outline of the book while at other times attention is drawn to leading themes. Each study concludes with a question section to promote further meditation and study.
The third is ‘Biographies of the Old Testament’ containing twenty-three character studies. The book suffers slightly from a lack of editing with the result that there is some repetition of material, a few errors in the chronological charts and some contradictions of interpretation. One obvious example is in connection with comments on the Song of Solomon in ‘The Bible in Brief’, the writer asserts that there are three main characters, Solomon, the Shulamite and a shepherd lover and carefully distinguishes between them, but in ‘A syllabus of the scriptures,’ Solomon and the shepherd lover are viewed as one and the same.
Despite these shortcomings this is a most helpful book that is undoubtedly the product of a lifetime’s love for, and study of, the word of God, and is highly recommended.
[Our thanks to Richard Catchpole, South Norwood, London, for this review]