Dec 14, 2010

Book Review: Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Galatians (Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament)
Galatians (Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament) by Thomas R. Schreiner is a fine example of a good commentary. With a mass of past and contemporaneous commentaries available to us for study, this new venture from Zondervan is very promising.

With most commentary, you will find a scholarly observation of the text, but be succumbed to an overwhelming abundance of authorial opinion. With the systematic breakdown of each chapter and verse, this commentary will only expose you to succinct portions of the author's opinion, and leave the rest to your observation of the text. Leaving you to compare the opinion of the writer to the content of the text, based on what the text actually presents, is a good plan for any exegete.

What's more appealing here is that the author does not merely expound upon a Greek explanation for this and for that. The commentary pains itself to clarify conflicting views, Greek translation, and scholarly perspective. The language of the commentary is conveyed in such a way that one need not be fluent in the original language to benefit from the exposure it provides, although it does help to know some basics. Plainly stated, this commentary is as much for the 'layman' as it is for the 'academic.'

Five great things about this commentary in particular -
  1. It is lightweight, readable, and presents well
  2. It exposes the reader to the essential information necessary for good exegesis, like background, opposing views, and language translation.
  3. It is affordable.
  4. The series is not bound to a singular author and each New Testament book is unique.
  5. It demonstrates the importance of understanding the nuance of language on modern exegesis
I wholly recommended purchasing this commentary if you have a few dollars in your book budget. If you have a ton of commentaries on Galatians, I am not sure this is going to stand out much more than some of the classics, but its editing, approach, and presentation will surely provide a refreshing approach to all things commentary!

*I received this book from Zondervan as a review copy

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