Hi, can you please help?


Hi, can anyone help?

I’ve been considering buying a book called - “Reading the Old Testament: An Introduction; Second Edition”- by Lawrence Edward Boadt. I have read that this book is very thorough and is meant for deep studying. This is very good, because I need a book like that goes into details, however, some reviewers say that Boadt ( and he is a priest!) assumes that God has had little or nothing to do with the writing of the Scripture, and that he does not believe in the inerrancy of the Bible I do not know if what the reviewers say is true. Could you please help and advise if buying this book is a good idea ?

Thank You and God Bless You All


This is one of the texts for my diocease scripture school. Boadt uses the historical critical method of bible study. A very academic approach to scripture study. Benedict said historical critical method is just one of many usefull tools for scripture study. To get a balance you should also get jeff cavins biblical timeline book which is a more faith based


Hi,I don’t know anything about the book but from what you have said alarm bells are ringing.
You don’t say whether the priest is a Catholic priest or not, but if he is Catholic then he is in serious error claiming that scripture is not inspired by God. Scripture is God’s Word but it is expressed in human language and so may have a weakness in it. A parallel with the Incarnation- just as in Christ God’s word was made flesh, taking on our human weakness, so that same Word of God has found a human expression in the words of Scripture (St John Chrysostom). If in doubt about the book then leave alone or it may confuse you. Alternatively read it and cross check any material you don’t understand with your Parish Priest). You just need to be careful that you don’t get fooled into believing heretical teachings.
Good Luck!


Really - you should not have ‘alarm bells’ ring based on comments written about what someone said about an author :rolleyes: … especially if you and the person who wrote of the second hand information have no knowledge of the book nor the author …

Father Boadt not only studied in this county but also at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. I have read his book Reading the Old Testament and it is a very good scholarly work. Father Boadt was expert in the Semitic languages of our Jewish roots.

Also - I have never heard that Father Boadt was anything other then a faithful and orthodox priest.

Keep in mind that there does exist a study of the scriptures that includes understanding the culture and history of people from which they come and the co-existing cultures that surround them. A study that includes a study of language and linguistic development and that studies the archeological evidence … AND none of which denies our Catholic faith nor the inerrancy of the Scriptures nor that they are a revelation from our Creator …


The Boadt text, as is said above, is a very academic and historically based text–I would recommend it, as it is a good introduction. We use it in our OT classes in the seminary. As for “alarm bells,” again, Fr. Boadt, who has since gone on to his reward, was known to be faithful and orthodox and one of the leading scholars in his field. Sure there are other approaches to studying scripture and other authors whose manner of doing so might be more your cup of tea–but just because one works primarily with the historical aspect of scripture study doesn’t mean he’s unorthodox.



Hi Yada,
Yes you are quite right and so I will eat humble pie for commenting on something I know nothing about. I apologise for misleading you, it was never my intention to discredit the book or the author but only to say:

  1. If alarm bells ring, for what ever reason, then it is best to find out about the Author and whether he/she is reliable before you read it.
  2. Always bear in mind that some books may hold personal views rather than the teaching of the Church. You can cross check with your parish priest.
    3.Sripture may have error in it due to human weakness, this is not a contradiction to scripture being inspired by God.
    Hope this makes more sense! Suffice to say I will comment no more on this topic.
    God Bless.


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