The Epic of Eden is a 12-week series through the Old Testament. The 12 weeks can essentially be broken down into two (almost) halves. Sessions 1-7 help us understand important concepts that are crucial to a better understanding of the Old Testament, and sessions 8-12 help us to understand important figures of the Old Testament, which also leads to better understanding of the first 39 books of our Bible.
First of all, to clear up any confusion, this publication is completely separate from The Epic of Eden: A Christian Entry into the Old Testament by Sandra L. Richter (IVP, 2008). Aside from the author and topic, these are unrelated publications.
Week 1 – The Great Cultural Barrier (basically, the culture of the OT)
Week 2 – Redemption
Week 3 – Real Time and Space (basically, the history and geography of the OT)
Week 4 – Covenant
Week 5 – Treaty
Week 6 – God’s Original Intent
Week 7 – God’s Final Intent
2nd “Half” — People
Week 8 – Noah
Week 9 – Abraham
Week 10 – Moses
Week 11 – David
Week 12 – The New Covenant (Jesus)
Lets face it: the Old Testament is confusing. I’m well aware of that. Of course, I’m one of those weirdos who actually wants to become fluent in Biblical Hebrew and do PhD studies in Old Testament. But, the vast majority of believers will never learn basic Hebrew or take a seminary-level OT course. That is where this study steps in to help!
Broken down the way that it is, Richter presents the information in an accessible way for those who don’t have formal biblical education. She helps “students” of this resource to organize the Old Testament in their minds. Then, they can approach the OT more confidently with greater understanding. Not only are there weekly videos (ranging from about 25-45 minutes), but there are also daily readings and study questions within the study guide, with helpful graphics and explanations.
If I had to recommend one Bible study resource, this would absolutely be it. (However, being a youth minister, I would primarily recommend this for young adults and up.) I love this study, and I love the way Richter lays out the Old Testament. The single critique I have (and the primary critique I had of The Epic of Eden [IVP, 2008]) is the lack of discussion regarding the prophets—a quite confusing topic when approaching the Old Testament. However, this critique is answered in advance by the expected release of The Epic of Eden: Isaiah sometime in the near future!
Publication Information and Links Related to The Epic of Eden:
- Wheaton College: Professor Sandra Richter
- The Epic of Eden Video Study Guide. By Sandra L. Richter. Franklin, TN: Seedbed Publishing, 2014. 210 pages. ISBN 978-1-62824-131-0. $22.95.
- The Epic of Eden 12-Week Video Resource. By Sandra L. Richter. Franklin, TN: Seedbed Publishing, 2014. $99.95 (DVD or Digital)
*This resource was provided free from Seedbed Publishing with my promise to post an unbiased review.