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The Bible has had an immeasurable impact on Western culture as the basis of two of the world's great religions, Judaism and Christianity. It remains a powerful means of spiritual guidance and a work of challenging profundity, charged with the deepest emotions and containing some of the most compelling stories ever told. For countless generations it has been a source of inspiration to artists, a comfort in suffering, and a focal point for reflection on the mysteries of life.
Now, The Illustrated Guide to the Bible distills the essence of this great work in over one hundred generously illustrated commentaries on the major stories, places, characters, and events in the Bible, from the Garden of Eden and the suffering of Job to the Last Supper and the Book of Revelation. Beautifully illustrated with over 300 full-color reproductions, photographs, and maps, the authoritative and engaging essays emphasize biblical narratives and their meanings and context. The substantial introduction brings together the latest scholarship on how the Bible was written, compiled, and handed down from generation to generation, and discusses its formidable, far-reaching influence throughout history. The main body of the Guide, divided into two sections, offers a treatment of the Hebrew Scriptures and the extraordinary history of the Israelites and a discussion of the New Testament and the life of Jesus. Each essay places its subject in historical and geographical context, comparing themes presented in the Bible with corresponding myths from a wide variety of cultures. Boxed sidebars throughout provide interesting background information on important themes and symbols (such as the dove and the lily) and full-color maps help to illustrate places and events (such as the city of Babylon and Paul's final voyage to Rome). The final section presents an invaluable and fully cross-referenced book-by-book summary of the Bible, a glossary of biblical terms, and a comprehensive bibliography and index.
Superbly illustrated with photographs of art, artifacts, and landscapes, and with magnificent paintings, charts, maps, and family trees, the highly accessible Illustrated Guide to the Bible is an excellent companion to this great work. It is an essential volume for every home and library, the first place to turn for information on this seminal book of Western culture.