For millions of people throughout the world, the Hebrew Bible functions as the foundation of their faith. For millions more, the same book functions as the subject of their studies. For both groups, the characters discussed in the Bible lend key insight to the lessons found there. However, sifting through the hundreds of names mentioned in this key religious text to find information about one figure can be tedious and time-consuming, and most reference guides either provide only brief, unhelpful entries on every character, including minor figures, or are so extensive that they can be more intimidating than the original text.
Essential Figures in the Bible compiles thorough but manageable entries on the figures most vital to an understanding of the Bible and its teachings. In this valuable reference, Dr. Ronald L. Eisenberg catalogs and explains the importance of more than 250 figures who are most vital to an understanding of the Hebrew Bible and its teachings. For these figures selected from the more than 3,000 names found in the Hebrew Bible, Eisenberg provides summaries of the narratives relevant to each figure discussed along with illustrative quotations from the Bible and supplementary material from rabbinic literature when appropriate.
Both religious studies and rabbinical students and casual readers of the Hebrew Bible will benefit from the comprehensive entries on the most-frequently discussed biblical figures and will gain valuable insights from this reader-friendly text. Complete in a single volume, this guide strikes a satisfying balance between the sparse, uninformative books and comprehensive but overly complex references that are currently the only places for inquisitive Bible readers to turn. For any reader who wishes to gain a better understanding of the Bible, Eisenberg's text is just as "essential" as the figures listed within.