François Bovon


Book Details

Series: Hermeneia
Categories: Luke

Luke 1: Chapters 1-9:50

This is the first of a three-volume commentary on the Gospel of Luke, covering the birth narratives through the Galilean ministry of Jesus. The introduction covers the text-critical questions of the Gospel, as well as its canonization, language, structure, origin, and theological profile. Bovon argues that Luke is not a direct student of Paul, but represents a specific form of the Pauline school in the third generation of the churches. The author also treats how the Gospel was used in later generations: writers from the early church, the Middle Ages, and the Reformation. He includes excursuses on "The Virgin Birth and the History of Religions," "The Devil," "The Word of God," and "Forgiveness of Sins."

Luke 2: Chapters 9:51-19:27

This is the second volume of François Bovon's three-volume commentary on the Gospel of Luke, covering the narration of Jesus travel on the road to Jerusalem the occasion in Luke of most of Jesus teachings to the disciples regarding faithfulness, perseverance, and the practice of justice and mercy. Bovon's theological interest in Luke is at the forefront here: as he declares in the preface, "I wish to examine his Gospel with the sober reserve of a scholar and with the confidence of a believer. For I hope in this manner to arrive at genuine understanding." Also distinctive is Bovon's attention to the history of interpretation of this Gospel through time.

Luke 3: Chapters 19:28-24:53

François Bovon's magisterial commentary on the Gospel of Luke is justly renowned for its combination of judicious historical and literary treatment of the Evangelist's context and for its theological sensitivity, informed by the wealth of the Christian interpretative tradition. Luke is clearly writing history in the manner of his Hellenistic and Jewish contemporaries, but Bovon insists he remains as well "a theologian of the Word of God." This volume completes the three-volume work (based upon Bovon's four volumes in the German EKK series) and represents the author's careful revision and updating of the German original.


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4.79 out of 5 based on 10 user ratings
Princeton Seminary December 1, 2017 5 5
Phillip J. Long July 29, 2017 4.9 5
Bovon is one of the major lights in the study of Luke, anyone who does research on the gospel of Luke would do well to read the essays collected in Luke the Theologian: Fifty-Five Years of Research (1950-2005). Bovon’s full commentary is not yet complete. Luke 2 will cover the travel narrative (9:51-19:27) and is due out this year, the third volume is planned with no date announced. The Hermenia series is a bit different than most, beginning with an unusual book size.
Joel Green July 29, 2017 5 5
All three volumes of the admirable work of François Bovon have now been translated into English (Hermeneia; Fortress, 2002-13). In his introduction, Bovon lays claim to his theological commitments and ecclesial location as partners in the interpretive enterprise.
A.E. Carnehl February 1, 2015 5 5
I cannot praise Bovon's Luke commentary enough. It is magnificent. Bovon is so erudite and insightful, and this thorough commentary shines with his style, brilliance, and most importantly, his Christian faith. Bovon writes from a moderately critical perspective. He deals with Wirkungsgeschichte in volumes 2 and 3 more than in volume 1, but he still does a very good job. His handling of the text's reception history is to the point and covers the whole range of ancient to modern commentators. This commentary is a delight to read and to utilize.
Arjan van den Os January 1, 2014 5 5
Certainly the best commentary on Luke. Its original is in German, but it's thorough, sound, readable, a bit critical, but his exegesis is simply magnificent. Deserves to be number one in the list.
John Glynn September 20, 2008 5 5
Asbury Theological Seminary Wilmore, KY 40390-1199 The publication of any study on the Gospel of Luke by Franois Bovon would be a much-anticipated event, given the longevity of his work and significance of his contribution to Lukan research. Generations of students have been ably guided through the first decades of Lukes em ergence as a theologian by Bovons Luke the Theologian: Thirty-Three Years of Research (1950-1983) (Pickwick, 1987). That this latest publication is a full-scale, critical commentary on the Third Gospel is all the more welcome. Those of us familiar with Bovons multivolume contribution to the Evangelish-Katholischer Kommentar zum Neuen Testament, Das Evangelium nach Lukas (Zrich: Benziger; Neukirchen-Vluyn: Neukirchener Verlag, 1989), will co me to this first volume on Luke in the Hermeneia series with appetites whetted. The German commentary, which is now complete through Luke 19:27, has already demonstrated Bovons gifts as a c areful reader of Luke, along with the depth and breadth of his grasp of issues pertinent to the exegesis of this Gospel. It may be enough simply to celebrate the rendering of Bovons original into English, but I must confess to my disappointment that what we have before us is just that, a translation of a 1989 publication. As Bovon admits in his preface, I was not able or willing to look backward (Luke 9:62!) to update this volumea defensi ble decision, to be sure, given how quickly one can be overcome by the torrents of secondary literature, but a regrettable one nonetheless. [Full Review]
$59.00, ISBN 0800660447. Robert C Tannehill Methodist Theological School in Ohio Delaware, OH 43015 This is the first volume of a multi-volume commentary originally published as Das Evangelium nach Lukas (EKKNT III/1. Zürich: Benziger Verlag & Neukirchen-Vluyn: Neukirchener Verlag, 1989) and now available in English in the Hermeneia commentary series. François Bovon is widely recognized as a leading Lukan scholar. He was formerly Professor at the University of Geneva and is now Frothingham Professor of the History of Religion at Harvard Divinity School. Two further volumes have been published in German, carrying the commentary through Luke 19:27. In the Preface to the English edition the author comments, “I was not able or willing to ‘look backward’ (Luke 9:62!) to update this volume. . . . It would have distracted my energy from my goal: to finish the commentary in the next few years.” All scholars who have undertaken large writing projects can sympathize with this decision. However, this comment points to a major limitation of the first volume of the Hermeneia commentary on Luke. Although some items have been added to the bibliographies, this volume is basically a publication of 1989, not of 2002. It does not interact with recent scholarship on Luke nor make use of some of the new methodologies of New Testament scholarship. There is a short Introduction, in which I particularly note the lack of an adequate discussion of the genre of Luke. (The continuation of the narrative in Acts, which may or may not fit the same genre as Luke, complicates the genre issue.) Each section of Luke is discussed under three headings: Analysis, Commentary, and Conclusion. In the Analysis Bovon typically discusses the formal structure of the passage and divergences from Mark and/or Matthew (often in detail). The Conclusion (usually brief) attempts to bring into focus the significance of the passage for Christian life and thought or the theological issues that arise from the passage. There are also occasional discussions of the history of interpretation of certain passages (a feature of the Evangelisch—Katholischer Kommentar series, where the heading Wirkungsgeschichte is used). [Full Review]

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