Home > Kregel > For the Love of God’s Word by Andreas Kostenberger and Richard D. Patterson

For the Love of God’s Word by Andreas Kostenberger and Richard D. Patterson

An introduction to a clear method of biblical interpretation

For the Love of God’s Word is an abridged, less technical version of Köstenberger and Patterson’s acclaimed Invitation to Biblical Interpretation. Students, teachers, and pastors alike will find this introduction to biblical hermeneutics to be an accessible resource with both breadth and substance.

Built on the premise that every passage requires careful scrutiny of its historical setting, literary dimension, and theological message, this volume teaches a simple threefold method that is applicable to every passage of Scripture regardless of genre. In addition, the book sets forth specific strategies for interpreting the various genres of Scripture, from poetry to epistle to prophecy. A final chapter is devoted to helpful Bible study resources that will equip the reader to apply Scripture to life.

This book will serve as a standard text for interpreting Scripture that is both academically responsible and accessible for pastors, teachers, and college students. This volume will enable students of Scripture to grow in love for God’s Word as they grow in the disciplines of study and discernment.  (From the Publisher’s Website)


The Bible is the most printed, most sold, and most read book in the world. It is also one of the least understood and most misquoted books in existence. Why? It does not read like any other book. It is a divinely inspired collection of 66 writings that vary in style and genre. To understand it, one needs to be taught by the same Spirit of God who inspired it and “acquire vital skills in understanding the greatest book ever written.”

Hermeneutics is the study of principles of interpretation. Without a good hermeneutic, we are prone to many interpretive errors. As the authors of this book tell us in the introduction, “Biblical interpreters are charged with a sacred task: handling Scripture with accuracy. They are entrusted with a sacred object, God’s Word of truth, and their faithfulness or lack thereof will result in God’s approval or in personal shame.”  Men’s souls hang in the balance.

Köstenberger and Patterson present a hermeneutical triad of theology, history and literature. “The interpretive task consists of considering each of the three major dimensions of the hermeneutical triad–history, literature, and theology–in proper balance, with the first two elements–history and literature–being foundational and with theology being at the apex. While discerning the spiritual message of scripture–theology–is the ultimate goal of biblical interpretation, an appreciation of the historical-cultural background of a particular text and a proper understanding of its literary features are essential.”

Chapter 1 begins with Preparation. We are given qualifications as to who can do it, why we should do it, and how we can do it using the triad. We are also treated to a short history of interpretation throughout the ages. Chapter 2 gives us the historical-cultural background of the Bible. Chapters 3-4 deal with the canon of scripture under the literary focus with chapters 5-11 discussing the genres found in holy writ. Language is discussed in chapters 12-13 finishing up the literary aspect. Chapter 14 is about the ultimate goal of interpretation which is theology. Finally, chapter 15 helps us with application of theology.

This book is well suited for the task it seeks to accomplish. Each chapter begins with a page of objectives followed by an outline. Upon completion of the chapter we are given guidelines in list form as well as key words, assignments and a chapter bibliography.  The authors have done a thorough job of introducing, explaining and fleshing out their hermeneutic.

Anyone who wants a deeper knowledge of scripture would do well to read this book. This abridgment of the authors’ previous work makes it more accessible to the non-academic. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It is definitely the best book I have read on the subject. As a father who wants his children to understand the Bible, I will be using this textbook to train my children to study God’s Word.

Book Details:

  • Authors: Andreas J. Kostenberger & Richard D. Patterson
  • Publisher: Kregel
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Page Count: 448
  • ISBN#: 9780825443367
  • List Price: $34.99

About the Authors:

Andreas J. Kostenberger is director of doctoral studies and professor of New Testament and Greek at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina. He translated Adolf Schlatter’s two-volume theology of the New Testament into English and is editor of the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society.

Richard D. Patterson (PhD, University of California, Los Angeles) is distinguished professor ermeritus at Liberty University. He has written well over 100 articles for major publishers and periodicals, including commentaries on Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah (Moody) and Joel and Kings (with Hermann Austel) for the second edition of the Expositor’s Bible Commentary Series.

(From the Publisher’s Website)

Where to Buy:

Disclaimer: I received this book from Kregel in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

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