God’s Relational Presence: The Cohesive Center of Biblical Theology – J. Scott Duvall and J. Daniel Hays

There are tons of books and resources on biblical theology, books that trace various themes through the Scriptures from beginning to end. The search for a central biblical theme is massive. Yet Duvall and Hays, in my humble opinion, is the best that I have read so far. They have set out to find a central cohesive theme that connects the spider web of Scripture, and they have found it in the relational presence of God, His desire and plan to dwell with His people.

What brings this book to the forefront for me is that it is very thorough in scope. Duvall and Hays walk through the Pentateuch, the Historical Books, Wisdom Books, Prophets, Gospels-Acts, NT Epistles, and the book of Revelation, showing how God, all throughout, is gathering His people to Himself, from the garden in Genesis to the new creation in Revelation.

Our basic thesis is that the Triune God desires to have a personal, encountering relationship with his people and enters into his creation in order to facilitate that relationship.

Duvall and Hays, 1

Relationship forms the bookends of Scripture. This book exalts God as the loving and very personal Creator and Sustainer of all things. Though this book is fairly academic, there is a lot about it that is devotional as we are drawn into the character of God, learning about His heart for His creation. If you are looking for details about specific books, it is easy to find in each section. They concisely lay out their goal for each chapter and what aspects come out in each portion of Scripture in regards to God’s relational presence.

This is definitely one of those forever books. I really believe it will be a classic that will be used for a long time. It’s such a great resource for all, whether you are prepping for a sermon or teaching opportunity, writing a research paper, or simply reading to better understand God and His Word.

*This book was graciously provided by Baker Academic in exchange for an honest review.

Read & Repeat

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