Walter Brueggemann’s Money and Possessions is the most recent addition to WJK’s Interpretation series, and a most welcomed addition it is! An exhaustive analysis and articulation of what the Bible has to say about money and possessions is much too daunting a task, thus Brueggemann has by necessity been rather selective in the passages he addresses, though he does span the entirety of the canon. His “Introduction” serves well as a summary and conclusion (he does not include the latter), and would be an excellent primer for study and discussion. The rest of the chapters follow the Bible through its canonical order.
Brueggemann follows the theme of God’s economy over and against the world’s economy. There are certainly passages dealing specifically with “money and possessions,” but there is a great deal of Scripture that addresses life in regards to how we live in relation to these things even if not explicitly mentioned. The latter is where the real meat of this study lies, and it may prove difficult to digest by those who appeal to individualism and pulling oneself up by the bootstraps. Brueggemann’s insight into the pervasiveness of covetousness throughout Scripture will likely be the beneficial driving force of perspectival shift for many who study and apply this text.
Along with finding it in the libraries of Bible students and teachers alike, I foresee Money and Possessions being added to syllabi for business, finance, economics, and socio-political courses in Christian universities. Highly recommended.