This is a history of religion rather than a theological book. In the introduction, Erhard Gerstenberger argues that the Old Testament contains many different theologies and he pays attention to the context in which the Old Testament is studied. He follows this up with an outlined study of the history of Ancient Israel, and goes on to examine faith, cultic practices and ethics as illustrations of belief in God (or gods, or goddesses) in each of the different stages. The approach is essentially sociological with close attention paid to both archaeology and the biblical texts, and each chapter raises the issue of what these investigations mean for belief in the modern world.
Erhard Gerstenberger is Emeritus Professor of Old Testament, University of Marburg.