BIBLE HISTORY DAILY

Biblical Archaeology Society 2021 Publication Awards Winners

These prestigious awards have been made possible by grants from: Samuel D. Turner and Elizabeth Goss

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BEST BOOK RELATING TO THE HEBREW BIBLE

The Origin and Character of God: Ancient Israelite Religion through the Lens of Divinity
Theodore J. Lewis
(Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press, 2020)

This is a monumental volume of over 1,100 pages, including over 200 pages of endnotes and 100 pages of bibliography. It contains a comprehensive discussion of most of the issues surrounding the history of the God of Israel in the context of the ancient Near East. It clearly represents Lewis’s magnum opus. It explores the origin of Israel’s God Yahweh and his relationship to Canaanite El, the iconography of divinity, and the multifaceted character of Yahweh, as well as the nature of his cult. A splendid volume, with many interesting illustrations, this volume is unusually both encyclopedic and readable. The author presents issues clearly and sorts through them judiciously, thus providing an invaluable synthesis of texts and iconography. Readers of BAR will enjoy!

Judges
John Day, University of Oxford
Elaine James, Princeton Theological Seminary
John Walton, Wheaton College

 

BEST BOOK RELATING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT

The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries, 3 volumes
Edited by Chris Keith, Helen K. Bond, Christine Jacobi, and Jens Schröter
(London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2020)

The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries is a truly impressive project. Organized roughly chronologically, the three-volume set explores an extensive range of representations of Jesus in a variety of ancient media. Importantly, all traditions—whether they are canonical or non-canonical, textual or material, complete or fragmentary—are given the same careful attention to show how they developed over time. Editors Chris Keith, Helen Bond, Christine Jacobi, and Jens Schröter should be commended for assembling such a strong roster of contributors and producing such a fine work. It will doubtless have a very long shelf life.

Judges
Craig Evans, Houston Baptist University
Rafael Rodriguez, Johnson University
Sarah Rollens, Rhodes College

 

BEST POPULAR BOOK ON ARCHAEOLOGY

Scribes and Scrolls at Qumran
Sidnie White Crawford
(Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2019)

Sidnie White Crawford’s book Scribes and Scrolls at Qumran provides a welcome, up-to-date synthesis of the field of Qumran studies. Furthermore, Crawford provides her own conclusion based on the latest archaeological data and recent textual scholarship. Scribes and Scrolls at Qumran is carefully researched and well written, authoritative yet accessible to the non-specialist as well as the student or scholar. This book will become part of the canon of research in Qumran studies.

Judges
Jennie Ebeling, University of Evansville
Dan Schowalter, Carthage College
Cynthia Shafer-Elliott, William Jessup University

 

BEST SCHOLARLY BOOK ON ARCHAEOLOGY
These books tied—both are high quality, yet vary in their approaches. The first is a monograph, and the second is an excavation report.

 

The Archaeology of the Bronze Age Levant: From Urban Origins to the Demise of City-States, 3700–1000 BCE
Raphael Greenberg
(Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 2019)

This outstanding volume by Tel Aviv University archaeologist Raphael Greenberg is a unique synthesis of the large body of archaeological data from the Bronze Age (c. 3700–1000 B.C.E.), the formative period in the development of Levantine societies. Every page of this engaging, richly illustrated, and carefully documented book offers new insights into the Canaanites and the other cultures that developed on the eastern Mediterranean coast in the shadow of neighboring Egypt and Syria. Greenberg’s masterful volume is sure to become the standard work on the Bronze Age Levant to which all future studies will be compared.

Judges
Jennie Ebeling, University of Evansville
Dan Schowalter, Carthage College
Cynthia Shafer-Elliott, William Jessup University

 

Machaerus III: Final Report on the Herodian Citadel 1968–2018
Győző Vörös
(Milano: Studium Biblicum Franciscanum, 2019)

Machaerus III: Final Report on the Herodian Citadel 1968–2018 celebrates the golden jubilee of excavations at the important Jordanian site of Machaerus. Edited by Győző Vörös, this volume includes a historical review of excavations at the site, the publication of the latest work on the royal palace of Herod (2016–2017), introduction to unpublished material from previous excavations (1978–1981), reassessment of earlier findings, examination of the relationship of the site to its port (Callirrhoe) and to the Jerusalem Temple, along with much more. It is lavishly illustrated with everything from historical photos to the latest in technical imaging.

Judges
Jennie Ebeling, University of Evansville
Dan Schowalter, Carthage College
Cynthia Shafer-Elliott, William Jessup University

 

The biennial BAS Publication Awards have been presented since 1985.

Our best to these winners!

 

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