Richard E. Averbeck, PhD

Emeritus Professor of Old Testament and Semitic Languages 

Faculty Since 1994


BA, Calvary Bible College
MDiv, MA, Grace Theological Seminary
PhD, Annenberg Research Institute, Dropsie College


[email protected]

Dr. Averbeck taught for four years at Dallas Theological Seminary, teaching in both the Old Testament and pastoral ministries departments. He also taught for ten years at Grace Theological Seminary, serving as chair of the Old Testament department for four years and chair of the seminary curriculum planning committee for five. His areas of expertise include Old Testament, especially the Pentateuch, ancient Near Eastern history and languages, Old Testament criticism, Hebrew, and biblical counseling. 

Selected Publications

“The Focus of Baptism in the New Testament,” Grace Theological Journal 2:2 (1981) 265-301.

The Sumerian Historiographic Tradition and Its Implications for Genesis 1-11,” in Faith, Tradition, and History: Old Testament Historiography in its Near Eastern Context, ed. A. R. Millard, J. K. Hoffmeier, and D. W. Baker (Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns, 1994) 79-102

“Law,” in Cracking Old Testament Codes, ed. D. Brent Sandy and Ronald L. Giese, Jr. (Essays in Honor of Richard D. Patterson; Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 1995) 113-138.

“Leviticus, Theology of (480-483); Offerings and Sacrifices (574-581); Oil (581-582); Priest and Priesthood (632-638); and Sanctuary (713-714),” in The Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, ed. Walter A. Elwell (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1996).

In New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis, 5 vols., ed. Willem A. VanGemeren (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1997), abbrev. NIDOTTE, my own articles total ca.275 printed pages:

1. General articles: “Clean and Unclean; Leviticus, Theology of; Offerings and Sacrifices” (4.477-486, 4.907-923, 4.996-1022, respectively).

2. Lexical articles: memorial portion (’zkārāh), 1.335-339; offering by fire, gift, present (’iššāh), 1.540-549; guilt offering (’āšām), 1.557-566; to purge, cleanse (brr), 1.772-774; perfume, balsam (bōsem), 1.774-775; to slaughter (btq), 1.784; to be defiled, defilement (g’l), 1.794-795; most holy place (debîr), 1.910; to menstruate, faint, weak (dwh), 1.925-928; blemish, stain (dōpî), 1.980; myrrh-oil (derôr), 1.985-986; to slaughter for sacrifice (zbh), 1.1066-1073; to be pure, clean (zkh), 1.1098-1100; sin, sin offering (haṭṭ’āt), 2.93-103; to be godless, defiled (hnp), 2.206-209; to slaughter (tbh), 2.334-336; to be clean (ṭhr), 2.338-353; to be unclean (ṭm’), 2.365-376; to make atonement (kpr), 2.689-710; frankincense (lebōnāh), 2.756-757; Tent of Meeting (’ōhel mô‘ ēd), 2.873-877; altar (mizbēah), 2.888-908; gift, present, grain offering (minhāh), 2.978-990; tithe, tenth (ma‘ ašer), 2.1035-1055; sanctuary (miqdāš), 2.1078-1087; to polish (mrq), 2.1107-1108; tabernacle (miškān), 2.1130-1134; to move back and forth, wave offering (nûp; tenûpāh), 3.63-67; burnt offering (‘ ōl āh ), 3.405-415; curtain in front of the Most Holy Place (pārōket), 3.687-689; to press out oil, (fresh) olive oil (ṣhr), 3.771-772; to let go up in smoke, incense (qṭr), 3.913-916; cassia (qeṣî‘ āh), 3.961-962; to approach, offer, offering, gift (qōrbān), 3.979-982; to pay for, make good (rṣh II), 3.1186-1188; to blend, mix ointments, perfume, ointment (rqh), 3.1195-1197;to slaughter (šhṭ), 4.77-80; peace offering (šelem), 4.135-142; tribute, contribution (terûmāh), 4.335-338.

“Ritual Formula, Textual Frame, and Thematic Echo in the

Cylinders of Gudea,” in Crossing Boundaries and Linking

Horizons: Studies in Honor of Michael C. Astour on His 80th

Birthday, ed. Gordon D. Young, Mark W. Chavalas, and Richard

E. Averbeck (Bethesda, Maryland: CDL Press, 1997), 39-95.

“Leviticus” in New English Translation Study Bible (Spokane,

Washington: Biblical Studies Press, 1999).

“The Cylinders of Gudea,” in The Context of Scripture, vol. II,

ed. William W. Hallo and K. Lawson Younger, Jr. (Leiden: Brill,

2000), 417-433.

“Sumer, the Bible, and Comparative Method: Historiography and

Temple Building,” in Mesopotamia and the Bible: Comparative

Explorations, ed. Mark W. Chavalas and K. Lawson Younger, Jr.

(Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press and Grand Rapids: Baker

Academic, 2002), 88-125.

“Worshiping God in Spirit,” and “Worshiping God in Truth,” in

Authentic Worship: Scripture’s Voice, Applying Its Truth, ed.

Herbert W. Bateman (Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2002), 79-133.

“Sacrifices and Offerings” and “Tabernacle,” in Dictionary of the

Old Testament: Pentateuch, ed. T. Desmond Alexander and

David W. Baker (InterVarsity Press, 2003), 706-733 and 807-


“Daily Life and Culture in ‘Enki and the World Order’ and Other

Sumerian Literary Compositions,” in Life and Culture in the

Ancient Near East, ed. Richard E. Averbeck, Mark W. Chavalas,

and David B. Weisberg (Bethesda, Maryland: CDL Press, 2003),



Awards, Affiliations, and Achievements

  • Member, Evangelical Theological Society
  • Member, The Institute for Biblical Research
  • Member, The American Oriental Society
  • Member, The American Schools of Oriental Research
  • Member, The Society of Biblical Literature


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