God of Justice and Mercy: A Theological Commentary on Judges
SCM Press, SCM, 2021, 296pp., pbk
Isabelle Hamley’s work on what is for most Christians (especially Anglicans) one of the Bible’s more under-explored byways delivers an unusual product: textual notes with enough detail on obscure etymologies, ancient Hebrew syntax, and vocabulary crossreferencing to delight the textual nerd, combined with a readable exposition of the historical and cultural background, and a light-touch commentary on how the concepts and themes of the ancient book of Judges can still be relevant today. In amongst the gory details, biased reporting, ambiguous morality ,and questionable practices, Hamley uncovers a subtle critique of leadership, identity, justice, gender, and inter-community relationships. She also unearths reflections on the perennial problem of disappointing leaders and the question of how to pass on the faith to the next generation.