One of the best Bible atlases just got better. Barry Beitzel, professor of Old Testament and Semitic Languages at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, is an expert in mapmaking, the history of mapmaking, geography, and archaeology. His mapwork appears in the ESV, NLT, NIV, and Ryrie study Bibles as well as the Thompson Chain Reference Bible and Life Application Bible.
Beitzel has significantly revised his classic The Moody Atlas of Bible Lands. The 1985 edition has 95 maps, and the new edition has 118, all new and digitized. The 100,000-word text is completely rewritten, well-documented, and longer than the 1985 edition by forty-eight pages. The atlas divides into two parts—the land’s physical geography and historical geography—and omits the brief third section from the 1985 edition on “The History of Biblical Mapmaking.” It uses high-quality paper and is 3.6 pounds and 11.3 × 8.6 × 1.3 inches.
Understanding the Bible’s geography is important, argues Beitzel, because “God prepared a certain kind of land, situated at a particular location, fashioned to elicit a specific and appropriate response” (p. x, emphasis in original). I am not aware of another atlas that more accessibly and dependably recounts the Bible’s storyline in light of its geography. It is both practical and academic without sacrificing either.
Andrew David Naselli
Andy Naselli is assistant professor of New Testament and Biblical Theology at Bethlehem College and Seminary in Minneapolis and administrator of Themelios.
Other Articles in this Issue
Bearing Sword in the State, Turning Cheek in the Church: A Reformed Two-Kingdoms Interpretation of Matthew 5:38–42
Among the many biblical passages that provoke controversial questions about Christian non-violence and cooperation with the sword-bearing state, perhaps none presses the issue as sharply as Matt 5:38–42...