Critical Junctures

From: clayton stirling bartholomew (
Date: Sun May 07 2000 - 15:20:25 EDT

Here are some light and irreverent comments on a newish book:

Porter, S. E. and D. A. Carson, eds, Linguistics and the New Testament:
Critical Junctures, Sheffield July 1999.

This book arrived via ILL yesterday and I knocked off several of the
articles after dinner and another one this morning. My first impression of
this book is a vague sensation of de ja vu. Some how I seem to have read
these articles before, perhaps in a previous life. I do not read the
journals so I have no idea why I have this sensation.

G. H. Guthrie's article "Boats n the Bay" is a must read for anyone who
wants to maintain their sanity while "doing" biblical studies.

D.A. Carson's article "Introduction to Introductions" is what I would call
90% predictable. As I read each paragraph I always knew where he was going
and what he was going to say next, but the fact that I could get through it
after a stiff 2 hour hike and a big dinner perhaps recommends it.

J.T. Reed's "Modern Linguistics and Historical Criticism" will certainly be
of interest to those who still do "Historical Criticism," members of an
endangered species.

S.E. Porter's article " Linguistics and Rhetorical Criticism" didn't fare
very well. It was a sort of general overview and I cannot keep my mind
focused while reading general overviews. It was, however, reasonably well
written and lucid.

The second half of the book contains two intriguing articles on lexicography
by A.J. Kostenberger and P. Danove. These are both stimulating reading.
Danove makes a proposal for a lexicon which specifies in tabular format the
argument structure of Greek verbs according to semantic and syntactic
functional categories. This proposal will not appeal to everyone but it is
certainly worth thinking about.

This is just a sampling, I have not and perhaps will not read all the

This is a book worth reading but unless you have unlimited funds you might
want to get it through a library. It is the kind of book you will read once
or perhaps twice. I would not personally make space for it in my library.

Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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