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The Return of the Chaos Monsters—and Other Backstories of the Bible
PAPERBACK; Published: 1/31/2012
ISBN: 978-0-8028-3746-2
Price: $ 16.00
167 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 6 x 9

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DESCRIPTION
Gregory Mobley plunges beneath the Bible's surface to reveal its "backstories"the tales that constitute the backbone of the people Israel and of the body of Christ. Viewing the Bible as "essentially, relentlessly story," Mobley provides an easy-to-understand sevenpart thematic overview of the Bible that guides readers through the drama of the Hebrew Bible, highlighting the interconnectedness of biblical stories. Each story is a variation on a single themethe dynamic interplay between order and chaos.

Intriguing Ancient Near Eastern myths, personal anecdotes, and popular cultural references from movies, musical theater, and writers ranging from Dr. Seuss to William Blake pepper the book throughout. Arresting chapter and section titles such as "It's Love That Makes the World Go 'Round" and "Lord Bezek's Big Toes" capture the imagination, and Mobley's own lyrical, energetic writing style exercised on vibrant biblical materialpropels the reader forward. Readers will find his enthusiasm contagious!

Read more about the book in a blog post from Mobley on EerdWord.
REVIEWS
Religious Studies Review
"The achievement of Mobley's slim, learned, and easily digestible volume is that it transmits significant theological ideas and a highly compelling literary-theological interpretation of the Bible, to those who would otherwise be unfamiliar with these interpretations."
Phyllis Trible
-- Union Theological Seminary
"In lively prose Greg Mobley combines the work of teacher and preacher, scholar and poet to explore the dominant story line undergirding the Bible. His passion for the subject guides the reader into mystery and mayhem, law and love, nature and nourishment. A book worthy of the informed faith it espouses."
Walter Brueggemann
-- Columbia Theological Seminary
"Mobley has written a thick narrative account of Israel's thick narrative. He does so with freedom and imagination while remaining faithful to the plotline of the old narrative. His book defies genre classification; it is part introduction, part theology, but mostly a playful tease that invites the reader into the indeterminate wisdom of the biblical text. Mobley's shrewd reflection on 'God's anger' is itself well worth the price of the book. But there is much more here that invites fresh thinking about texts we thought we already knew. This welcome and suggestive probe of biblical imagination ranges all the way from the stories of the ancient Near East to quite personal narrative memories."
Lawrence M. Wills
-- Episcopal Divinity School
"The Bible was composed by storytellers, and, nearly alone among commentators, Mobley brings the Bible's narrative world, often an oral narrative world, to life."
Theological Book Review
"Mobley's work is both entertaining in its presentation and insightful in its contribution."
Review of Biblical Literature
"Theological students and sophisticated lay audiences will find here a remarkably good, interesting, and informative read. The prose is lively, chocked full of well-turned phrases and catchy statements. Concepts are vividly depicted with extrabiblical illustrations from both ancient and modern literature. Biblical issues are often presented in new and attractive light. Mobley's background as preacher and teacher are everywhere evident, as is also his commitment to promoting Jewish-Christian dialogue."
Bible Study Magazine
"Mobley does an excellent job of weaving the stories of the Bible around the narrative thread of order and chaos using humor, allusions to modern literature and scholarly research. Anyone with an interest in the Old Testament — including scholars, pastors or laypeople — will benefit from this book. . . . Accessible to someone who has never studied the Old Testament."
Biblical Studies Bulletin
"This is a wonderfully engaging book, written with passion and much acute insight."
Our Sunday Visitor
"This reviewer has never read such engaging prose in a scholarly work!"

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