A simple tool for a first reading of the Bible that answers the first questions that are posed by the reader who has little familiarity with the Bible and helps with the critical reading of the Bible, i.e., to maintain the right distance to avoid the problems that arise when the text is taken literally. Chapters 1. Why Don t People Read the Bible? 2. What Is the Old Testament? 3. The Pentateuch or the Constitution of Israel 4. The Historical Books (the Former Prophets ) and the Voice of the Opposition 5. The Prophets: Writers, Journalists, Columnists and Pundits of the Period 6. The Wisdom Books, the Gurus of Israel 7. The Last Shelves of the National Library of Israel 8. Conclusion
Jean-Louis Ska is professor of Old Testament at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome.