Does the Bible allow us to deceive? Is it ever right to lie? These are perennial questions that have been discussed and debated by theologians for centuries with little consensus. Entering this conversation, Just Deceivers provides a fresh analysis of this important topic through a comprehensive examination of the motif of deception in the books of Samuel. While many studies have explored deception in other Old Testament texts--especially the patriarchal narratives of Genesis--and a few articles have initiated examination of this motif in Samuel, Just Deceivers builds upon this groundwork and offers an exhaustive treatment of this theme in this important portion of the Hebrew Bible. Newkirk takes the reader through the books of Samuel, investigating every occurrence of deception in the narrative, exploring how the author depicts these various acts of deception, and then synthesizing the results to offer an exegetically based theology of deception. In so doing, this study both challenges commonly held views concerning the Bible's stance on falsehood and illustrates the importance of attending to the sophisticated literary character of biblical narrative. In Just Deceivers, Newkirk tackles a tough topic--how are Bible readers to come to terms with the surprisingly numerous accounts of deception in the books of 1 and 2 Samuel. Combining careful research, a broad acquaintance with pertinent primary and secondary literature, a lucid and inviting writing style, and sound judgment throughout, Newkirk's book should find a place on the reading lists not only of students of the books of Samuel but of all who have ever puzzled over 'lying episodes' in the Bible. --V. Philips Long, Professor of Old Testament, Regent College, Vancouver, BC, Canada Many assume it's always wrong to deceive others. Imagine their surprise when they discover that the Bible sometimes views deception positively. In this important study of deception in 1-2 Samuel, Matthew Newkirk rightly concludes that there is such a thing as just deception. I agree and heartily recommend this book for all who want to know when deception is not only acceptable, but right and just. --Robert B. Chisholm, Professor of Old Testament Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary, Dallas, TX Newkirk helpfully explores the role and consequences of deceit in twenty-eight episodes in the books of Samuel, with the aim of determining the narrator's disposition toward the issue. He observes that when the goal of the deceit was to cause unjust harm or death to someone else, or when deceivers were only looking out for their own interests, the biblical author assessed the actions negatively. However, when the intent of the deception was to prevent unjust harm or death, and when the deception was intended to benefit someone else, it was assessed positively. . . . Pastors and biblical commentators, students of Scripture and Christian ethicists will need to pay careful attention to this work in the future. --Daniel I. Block, Gunther H. Knoedler Professor of Old Testament, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL Matthew Newkirk (PhD, Wheaton College) is Professor of Old Testament at Christ Bible Seminary in Nagoya, Japan.