(Book review) Sweeter than Honey, Richer than Gold: A Guided Study of Biblical Poetry


Reviewed by: Tucker White, a Professional Writing major at Taylor University, Upland, IN

 


Introduction

Title: Sweeter than Honey, Richer than Gold: A Guided Study of Biblical Poetry

Author: Leland Ryken

Publisher: Weaver Book Company

Publication Date: May 1, 2015

Format: Printed Book

Length: 128 Pages

OVERVIEW

Even for one well versed in poetry, biblical poetry can seem daunting and unapproachable. Sweeter than Honey, Richer than Gold seeks to reduce the intimidation. Dr. Leland Ryken increase the reader’s understanding of poetry and poetic techniques that are specifically used in biblical poetry. The reader does not just learn by reading but also by doing direct analysis of the poetry.  The author provides several exercises in this book that direct the reader to explore elements of psalms and prophetic poetry through reading, interpreting, understanding context, and appreciating word choice.

Although biblical poetry cover a vast range (it takes up nearly a third of the text of the Bible), Sweeter Than Honey gives readers the footing to understand it. Nothing heretical or controversial stands out. The book is full of excerpts from the book of Psalms, as well as entire chapters from other passages of scripture. The language is usually clear, but sometimes it reverts to an academic vocabulary with which some readers may not be familiar. However, Dr. Ryken’s expertise on biblical poetry is insightful and will increase the reader’s understanding of this ancient art form.

ASSESSMENT

Rating (1 to 5)

4 Stars

Suggested Audience

The Christian who seeks a greater understanding of biblical poetry.

Christian Impact

This book demystifies the, at times, abstract and non-literal poetry throughout the Bible. Depending on the reader’s level of familiarity with poetry, it can either sharpen an already present understanding and appreciation or open an unexplored section of the Bible for reading, understanding, and enjoyment.

 

 


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