This introduction offers the nonspecialist an overview of the Hebrew Bible/OT, along with some deuterocanonical literature, that highlights select theological and historical matters, deliberately setting these within a dialectic of universalism and particularism. In this respect, Novick has produced something other than the standard introduction, addressing very broad topics within these parameters both concisely and accessibly. The tone of his prose is inviting, even ruminating at times, bespeaking its genesis in the classroom. Footnotes are few, and each chapter begins with suggested primary readings and then ends with questions for further reflection and a brief bibliography.

Novick introduces his book with two concerns that characterize and direct the rest of his discussion. First, Novick is fascinated with the interplay between particularism and universalism. He wishes to push against the simplistic notion that the OT is particularist and concerned only with the fate of Israel, while the NT is universalist in...

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