Ligonier Ministries (Keith Mathison)

Ligonier Ministries (Keith Mathison)

Ligonier Ministries is an international Christian education organization established in 1971 to equip Christians to articulate what they believe and why they believe it. Founded by theologian Dr. R.C. Sproul, proclaiming God's holiness is central to the ministry's purpose. The reviews were written by Keith Mathison, director of curriculum development for Ligonier Ministries. He received his B.A. in Christianity and political science from Houston Baptist University and then studied at Dallas Theological Seminary for two years before completing his M.A. in theological studies at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida. He has also earned a Ph.D. in Christian thought from Whitefield Theological Seminary.

Reviews

Smalley, Stephen S. The Revelation to John. InterVarsity Press, 2005.
I include Stephen Smalley's commentary on Revelation in this Top 5 list because I believe his view of the dating of the book is essentially correct. In his commentary, and more fully in his book Thunder and Love, Smalley argues that the book was written in the reign of Vespasian (AD 69-79), just before the fall of Jerusalem to Titus in AD 70. As I explain in my own book, this view of the date of Revelation fits very well with several pieces of evidence, including what John writes in Rev. 17:9-11. I cannot wholeheartedly recommend this commentary as the best, however, because I differ with Smalley's interpretive approach. Despite the fact that his view of the book's date lends itself to a basically preterist view, Smalley follows Beale in taking a modified idealist approach. I agree with Bauckham that it is a very serious mistake to understand the images of Revelation as timeless symbols. It would be the same as if we were to interpret Jeremiah's very specific prophecies about the coming destruction of Judah by Babylon in an idealist manner. John's book is also a prophecy, and like Jeremiah, it too has a specific historical context. [Full Review]
Beale, G. K. The Book of Revelation. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1998.
Many Reformed and evangelical scholars argue that Beale has written the best available contemporary commentary on Revelation. In many respects, it is outstanding. Beale's commentary is the place to turn for insight on the many Old Testament allusions and echoes in the book of Revelation. My fundamental reservation about the book has to do with Beale's modified idealist approach. Revelation is a prophecy (1:3; 19:10; 22:7, 10, 18, 19). We do not interpret Old Testament prophetic books in an idealist manner. They were written to specific people in a specific time and place, often referring to specific imminent judgments and promising a time of restoration in the distant future. Revelation is very similar in that it is dealing with the imminent destruction of Jerusalem and the restoration that will take place at the consummation. To interpret it in an idealist manner is to decontextualize it. In spite of this, Beale's commentary contains a wealth of information and should be consulted by any serious student of Scripture. [Full Review]
Aune, David E. Revelation. 3 Vols. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1997.
David Aune's massive commentary on the book of Revelation is another that should be consulted by every serious student of Scripture. The strongest point of Aune's commentary is the amount of information it contains regarding relevant extrabiblical literature that sheds light on the historical context. Regarding the date of the book, Aune takes a slightly complicated view. He believes the book went through stages of composition. He argues that Revelation 1:7 -12a and 4:1 - 22:5 were probably composed around AD 70, but he believes the final edition of the book was put together during the reign of Trajan (AD 98-117). The primary problem with this commentary, however, is that it loses sight of the forest for all the trees. Aune is very helpful with the details of the text and the details of extrabiblical literature. He is not as helpful when it comes to the point of understanding what the book means, its message and theology. He looks closely at the brush strokes, but he looks so closely that he can't see the big picture. [Full Review]
Ladd, George Eldon. A Commentary on the Revelation of John. Eerdmans, 1972.
Some readers may be surprised that I would recommend Ladd's commentary since Ladd is an historic premillennialist. Despite differing with Ladd's millennial view, I believe his commentary still contains a wealth of interpretive insight. Ladd describes his interpretive approach as a blending of the preterist and futurist methods, which means that he recognizes the relevance of the immediate historical context. His dating of the book during the reign of Domitian, late in the first century, causes some problems, but this classic commentary is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Osborne, Grant R. Revelation. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2002.
Like Ladd, Osborne is a premillennialist, and like several recent authors, he takes an eclectic approach to the book of Revelation. In Osborne's case, he takes an eclectic approach with an emphasis on the futurist position. Osborne's commentary is particularly helpful in providing historical background information on the people, places, and things mentioned in the biblical text. Like most commentators, Grant too easily dismisses the arguments for an early date of the book, but the commentary is still well worth consulting. [Full Review]
Kruse, Colin G. The Letters of John. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2000.
The Pillar New Testament Commentaries edited by D.A. Carson are consistently excellent works. Colin Kruse's commentary is no exception. He has done extensive work in the Johannine literature and written a commentary on the Gospel of John for the Tyndale series. This work on the Epistles of John is thorough and accessible. It should be on the desk of every pastor and teacher [Full Review]
Yarbrough, Robert W. 1-3 John. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2008.
Like the Pillar series, the Baker Exegetical series of commentaries have also been consistently outstanding. Yarbrough, like Kruse, is an accessible author. If you can get two commentaries on John's letters, start here with Kruse and Yarbrough. [Full Review]
Witherington III, Ben. Letters And Homilies for Hellenized Christians: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on Titus, 1-2 Timothy And 1-3 John. LHHJC. IVP Academic, 2006.
Ben Witherington has written a number of what he calls "socio-rhetorical" commentaries on many of the New Testament books. These works provide very helpful contextual information. Recently, Witherington completed three "socio-rhetorical" volumes that cover the Pastoral Epistles, the book of Hebrews, and the General Epistles. Two of the volumes are titled Letters and Homilies for Hellenized Christians, and one is titled Letters and Homilies for Jewish Christians. The first volume includes his commentary on the Epistles of John. It is a helpful work that should be consulted by those doing in-depth study of these letters. [Full Review]
Smalley, Stephen S. 1, 2, and 3 John (Rev. ed.). WBC. Zondervan Academic, 2008.
Stephen S. Smalley has written a number of books on the works of John. His commentary on the Epistles of John is a valuable contribution to the literature. Although the WBC series is not the most reader-friendly series, it is worth the effort in this instance. [Full Review]
Burge, Gary M. The Letters of John. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1996.
Pastors, Bible Study leaders, and other teachers will find Burge's commentary in the NIVAC series a helpful tool, particularly as they seek insight on how to apply the timeless truth of God's Word in these letters to the contemporary context in which we live. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. “Malachi” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Malachi in this volume was written by Douglas Stuart, whose WBC volume on Hosea - Jonah is outstanding. This commentary continues that excellence. One only wishes he would write commentaries on the rest of the Minor Prophets. As mentioned in previous posts, the McComiskey volume is somewhat technical [Full Review]
Verhoef, Pieter A. The Books of Haggai and Malachi. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1987.
Verhoef's commentary on Malachi in the NICOT series is somewhat more technical than most of the NICOT commentaries, but it is less technical than Stuart's, mentioned above. It remains accessible to the non-specialist. For those who lack a knowledge of Hebrew, and are seeking a thorough commentary on Malachi, this volume is highly recommended. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on Malachi, the best available is the one by Baldwin in the Tyndale series. Like all of her commentaries, it is clear and concise without being shallow [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi: God's Restored People. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 1994.
Another very helpful introductory level commentary on Malachi is the one by John Mackay in the Focus on the Bible series. Mackay's commentary will be particularly helpful for pastors seeking a way to communicate the meaning of this book to a contemporary audience [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Green, Gene L. Jude and 2 Peter. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2008.
Until very recently, there were not a lot of choices for good commentaries on 2 Peter and Jude. The situation has changed dramatically in recent years with the publication of several very good works. If you are able to have only one commentary on 2 Peter and Jude, this recent commentary by Gene Green should be at the top of your wish list. At 450 pages, it is thorough without becoming inaccessible. It should be of use to both students and pastors. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Davids, Peter H. The Letters of 2 Peter and Jude. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2006.
Until the publication of Gene Green's commentary, this volume by Peter Davids was the best commentary on these two neglected books. Like all of the other volumes in the Pillar series, it is accessible and insightful. [Full Review]
Moo, Douglas J. 2 Peter, Jude. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1997.
Although the commentaries in the NIVAC series vary in quality, any time you see a commentary by Douglas Moo, it will be well worth reading. Moo is an outstanding New Testament scholar. This work should prove especially helpful to pastors. [Full Review]
Schreiner, Thomas R. 1, 2 Peter, Jude. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 2003.
As I mentioned in the blog post on 1 Peter, Thomas Schreiner's work is always worth consulting. His strengths in the field of biblical theology shine through in this helpful commentary. [Full Review]
Bauckham, Richard J. 2 Peter and Jude. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1983.
Many rank Bauckham's work as the best commentary on these two biblical books. Unfortunately (and without sufficient reason) Bauckham concludes that Peter was not the author of 2 Peter. Although most critical scholars would agree with Bauckham on this point, it is a significant mistake that mars a work containing some very helpful insights. For helpful responses to the arguments Bauckham presents, see the commentaries by Green and Davids. [Full Review]
Clowney, Edmund. The Message of 1 Peter. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1994.
Clowney's commentary is not the most technical, nor the most exhaustive work on 1 Peter by any stretch. In fact, it is an introductory level work, accessible to any reader, but page for page, it is by far, the most helpful commentary on 1 Peter. Clowney packs more insight into one page than many commentaries pack into an entire chapter. This one is a must-have. [Full Review]
Jobes, Karen H. 1 Peter. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2005.
Those needing in-depth exegetical analysis will not want to pass up the BECNT volume on 1 Peter by Jobes. It is a good companion to the work mentioned above by Clowney. If you have a limited budget, pick up the volumes by Clowney and Jobes, and they will serve you well [Full Review]
Schreiner, Thomas R. 1, 2 Peter, Jude. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 2003.
Thomas Schreiner's work is always worth consulting. He has written some very good works on New Testament theology,and his strengths in this area shine through in this commentary. Very helpful. [Full Review]
Davids, Peter H. The First Epistle of Peter. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1990.
Peter Davids' commentary has been somewhat overshadowed by the more recent work of Jobes, but it is still worth consulting. Like most of the NICNT volumes, it is solid and thorough without becoming inaccessible. [Full Review]
Grudem, Wayne. 1 Peter. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1988.
Grudem's commentary on 1 Peter is another helpful introductory level commentary on this book of Scripture. Like all of the Tyndale commentaries, it is clear and concise. [Full Review]
McComiskey, Thomas Edward. “Haggai” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Haggai in this volume was written by Alec Motyer, one of the most insightful and helpful Old Testament scholars alive today. When you see a book by Motyer, you know it will be well worth your time to read it. This commentary on Haggai is such a book. NOTE: It is technical and assumes some knowledge of Hebrew. [Full Review]
Verhoef, Pieter A. The Books of Haggai and Malachi. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1987.
Verhoef's commentary on Haggai in the NICOT series is somewhat more technical than most of the NICOT commentaries, but it is less technical than Motyer's, mentioned above. It remains accessible to the non-specialist. For those who lack a knowledge of Hebrew, and are seeking a thorough commentary on Haggai, this volume is highly recommended. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on Haggai, the best available is the one by Baldwin in the Tyndale series. Like all of her commentaries, it is clear and concise without being shallow. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi: God's Restored People. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 1994.
Another very helpful introductory level commentary on Haggai is the one by John Mackay in the Focus on the Bible series. Mackay's commentary will be particularly helpful for pastors seeking a way to communicate the meaning of this book to a contemporary audience. [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting [Full Review]
Phillips, Richard D. Zechariah. REC. P&R Publishing, 2007.
Readers of this blog will notice that most of the commentaries listed here were also listed as the top 5 on the book of Haggai. The one difference is the volume in the number 1 slot. Richard Phillips commentary on Zechariah combines pastoral sensitivity with scholarly depth, all the while remaining accessible to laymen. That is a considerable feat with a book as difficult as Zechariah. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
McComiskey, Thomas Edward. “Zechariah” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Zechariah in this volume was written by Thomas McComiskey himself. As with the other commentaries in this volume, it is fairly technical, and parts of the commentary require some knowledge of Hebrew. Very helpful. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on Zechariah, the best available is the one by Baldwin in the Tyndale series. Like all of her commentaries, it is clear and concise without being shallow. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi: God's Restored People. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 1994.
Another very helpful introductory level commentary on Zechariah is the one by John Mackay in the Focus on the Bible series. Mackay's commentary will be particularly helpful for pastors seeking a way to communicate the meaning of this book to a contemporary audience [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Robertson, O. Palmer. The Books of Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1990.
Readers of this blog will notice that my top 5 suggestions for Zephaniah commentaries are identical to my top 5 suggestions for Nahum and Habakkuk commentaries. As mentioned previously, Robertson is very helpful at explaining the larger theological themes found within these books. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Motyer, J. Alec. “Zephaniah” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Zephaniah in this volume was written by Alec Motyer, an outstanding Old Testament scholar who has written exceptional commentaries on books such as Exodus and Isaiah. This commentary is fairly technical and requires some knowledge of Hebrew. It is very helpful. [Full Review]
Baker, David W. Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on Zephaniah, the best one available is the volume in the Tyndale series by David W. Baker. Although very brief, it does communicate the main ideas very well. [Full Review]
Barker, Kenneth L.; Bailey, Waylon. Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1998.
At about the same level of difficulty as the NICOT volume, the volume in the NAC series by Barker and Bailey is also a helpful commentary. It is also just as accessible as the NICOT volume. It is not quite as helpful as the NICOT volume, however, on theological issues. [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Moo, Douglas J. The Letter of James. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2000.
Douglas Moo is one of the top conservative New Testament scholars alive today. He has written one of the best commentaries on Romans, and now one of the best commentaries on James. If you can only have one commentary on James, this is the one to have. Highly recommended. Moo has also contributed the volume on James in the Tyndale New Testament Commentary series, but if you have the Pillar volume, the Tyndale volume is unnecessary. [Full Review]
Davids, Peter H. The Epistle of James. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1982.
For those who are intending to do in-depth exegetical work in the original Greek text, Davids' commentary in the NIGTC commentary will be an invaluable help. Like all of the NIG commentaries, this one leaves virtually no stone unturned. [Full Review]
Manton, Thomas. James. GEN. Banner of Truth, 1998.
Thomas Manton's commentary on James is a classic work that should not be ignored merely because it is older. There is a wealth of insight here. This commentary is also available in the Crossway Classic Commentaries series (1995) [Full Review]
Kovalishyn, Mariam Kamell; Blomberg, Craig L. James. ZECNT. Zondervan, 2008.
This commentary on James is the first volume in the new ECNT series. The layout of the volume is very helpful. For each passage, there are seven primary sections: Literary Context, Main Idea, Translation and Graphical Layout, Structure, Exegetical Outline, Explanation of the Text, and Theology in Application. This series should prove to be very helpful for busy pastors [Full Review]
Motyer, J. Alec. The Message of James. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1985.
Motyer's works should never be skipped by those seeking insight into the meaning of Scripture. His commentaries on Isaiah and Exodus are particularly valuable, and the same is true for this introductory level commentary on James. [Full Review]
Robertson, O. Palmer. The Books of Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1990.
Readers of this blog will notice that my top 5 suggestions for Habakkuk commentaries is identical to my top 5 suggestions for Nahum commentaries. As mentioned previously, Robertson is very helpful at explaining the larger theological themes found within these books. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. “Habakkuk” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Habakkuk in this volume was written by F.F. Bruce, who is always insightful. The commentary is technical and requires some knowledge of Hebrew. It is very helpful [Full Review]
Baker, David W. Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on Habakkuk, the best one available is the volume in the Tyndale series by David W. Baker. Although very brief, it does communicate the main ideas very well. [Full Review]
Barker, Kenneth L.; Bailey, Waylon. Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1998.
At about the same level of difficulty as the NICOT volume, the volume in the NAC series by Barker and Bailey is also a helpful commentary. It is also just as accessible as the NICOT volume. It is not quite as helpful as the NICOT volume, however, on theological issues. [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Hughes, Philip Edgcumbe. A Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews. Eerdmans, 1987.
If there is a second "must-read" commentary on Hebrews, it is the contemporary classic by Philip Hughes. He is particularly helpful in drawing out theological implications of the text. If you can only afford one commentary, buy the set by Lane and ask someone to purchase Hughes for you as a gift. [Full Review]
Lane, William L. Hebrews. 2 Vols. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1991.
Of all the commentaries on Hebrews that I have looked at and used, I have found the two-volume set by William Lane to be the one I turn to first. While I may not agree with every exegetical conclusion Lane makes, he is always worth reading on a given passage. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
France, R. T. “Hebrews” in Hebrews–Revelation. REBC. Zondervan, 2006.
Recently, the 12 volume Expositor's Bible Commentary experienced an extreme makeover and was completely revised. Of the original contributors, some thirty of them are new. Among the new contributions is the commentary on Hebrews by R. T. France. France has done extensive work on the use of the Old Testament in the New Testament, which suits him particularly well as a commentator on Hebrews. [Full Review]
Ellingworth, Paul. The Epistle to the Hebrews. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1993.
Paul Ellingworth's commentary on Hebrews is a massive technical commentary on the Greek text. For those doing in-depth study of the book, it is invaluable. It is, however, not for the faint of heart. Some knowledge of Greek is required simply to follow the comments. A good reference work to have. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. The Epistle to the Hebrews. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1996.
F. F. Bruce wrote a number of fine commentaries during his lifetime. His commentary on Hebrews is one of those. Originally published in the mid-1960s, this commentary was completely revised and republished in 1990, the year of Professor Bruce's death. The commentary is thorough yet accessible and should be consulted by all students of this book of Scripture. [Full Review]
Robertson, O. Palmer. The Books of Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1990.
The best commentary on the Book of Nahum is the volume in the NICOT series by O. Palmer Robertson. Like most of the commentaries in this series, it is written from a more conservative perspective and is very accessible. Robertson is also very helpful at explaining the larger theological themes found within the book. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. “Nahum” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
I have mentioned the commentary edited by Thomas McComiskey several times in previous posts. The commentary on Nahum in this volume was written by Tremper Longman III. Like the other commentaries in this volume, this one is somewhat technical and requires some knowledge of Hebrew. Very helpful on literary aspects of the text. [Full Review]
Baker, David W. Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary, the best one available is the volume in the Tyndale series by David W. Baker. It is very brief, but readers will get the big picture. [Full Review]
Barker, Kenneth L.; Bailey, Waylon. Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1998.
At about the same level of difficulty as the NICOT volume, the volume in the NAC series by Barker and Bailey is also a helpful commentary. It is alsojust as accessible as the NICOT volume. It is not quite as helpful as the NICOT volume, however, on theological issues. [Full Review]
Smith, Ralph L. Micah–Malachi. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1984.
Ralph Smith's commentary on the last seven books of the Minor Prophets is not nearly as helpful as Douglas Stuart's commentary on the first five Minor Prophets in the same commentary series, but it is still worth consulting. [Full Review]
Knight III, George W. The Pastoral Epistles. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1992.
George Knight's commentary on the Pastoral Epistles is the best contemporary commentary on these books. Knight takes a thoroughly conservative and orthodox approach to the interpretation of the letters, rightly attributing them to Paul. The only drawback is that this commentary is technical and assumes a working knowledge of Greek. For those with such a knowledge, it will prove to be very valuable. [Full Review]
Towner, Philip H. The Letters to Timothy and Titus. NICNT. Eerdmans, 2006.
Philip Towner's commentary in the NICNT series is less technical than Knight's, but it is still an imposing work at over 900 pages. Despite its length, it remains accessible to most educated readers. Like Knight, Towner rejects the conclusions of critical scholars who deny Pauline authorship of the Pastoral Epistles. [Full Review]
Mounce, William D. Pastoral Epistles. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 2000.
Many will recognize William D. Mounce as the author of the widely used Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar. His commentary on the Pastoral Epistles in the Word series is very helpful. Mounce thoroughly discusses all of the important issues raised by Paul (whom he believes wrote these epistles), and when dealing with controversial parts of the letters, he fairly represents those with whom he disagrees. All in all, a very good commentary. [Full Review]
Guthrie, Donald. The Pastoral Epistles. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1990.
For those seeking an accessible, introductory level commentary on the Pastoral Epistles, the work by Donald Guthrie in the Tyndale series is probably the best place to begin. Guthrie takes a conservative approach to the books. He addresses all of the objections to Pauline authorship and finds them unconvincing. This is a very helpful verse-by-verse commentary. [Full Review]
Calvin, John. 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus. CCC. Crossway, 1998.
I would recommend John Calvin's commentaries on every book of the Bible for which he wrote a commentary. He is a master exegete, and even after 500 years, his works are worth consulting by all serious students of Scripture. Crossway has put together a series of classic commentaries in an affordable paperback format. The work by Calvin on the Pastorals is particularly interesting because of the insight it gives us to the Reformation understanding of church leadership. A must-read. [Full Review]
Calvin, John. Sermons on the Book of Micah. P&R Publishing, 2003.
Although, strictly speaking, not a commentary, this volume of sermons on the book of Micah by the sixteenth-century reformer, John Calvin, should be consulted by all who are interested in this prophetic book. It will prove especially valuable for preachers. [Full Review]
Waltke, Bruce K. A Commentary on Micah. Eerdmans, 2008.
Bruce Waltke has written three commentaries on the book of Micah. The first was a small commentary that appeared in the Tyndale series together with small commentaries on Obadiah and Jonah. The second was a larger and more technical commentary that appeared in the set on the Minor Prophets edited by Thomas McComiskey. This full-length commentary is one step beyond what appeared in the McComiskey volume. It is technical, and some grasp of Hebrew is recommended in order to get the full benefit of the work. There is no contemporary commentator, however, who is more well-versed in the book of Micah than Bruce Waltke. It is a must-have for serious study of the book. [Full Review]
Prior, David. The Message of Joel, Micah, Habakkuk. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1998.
For those seeking a good introductory level commentary on Micah, there is probably no better place to start, aside from Waltke's work in the Tyndale series, than with David Prior's volume in the BST series. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Andersen, Francis I.; Freedman, David Noel. Micah. AYB. Yale University Press, 2000.
Although written from a more critical perspective than Waltke, the commentary on Micah by Andersen and Freedman is worth consulting by those doing in-depth study of the book. The commentary, at 637 pages, is exhaustive, touching on every aspect of the book. [Full Review]
Allen, Leslie C. The Books of Joel, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1976.
I have already mentioned Allen's commentary in a couple of previous posts. It is a slightly technical work, but it should be accessible to most pastors and laymen. [Full Review]
Green, Gene L. The Letters to the Thessalonians. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2002.
Because the epistles to the Thessalonians contain one of the most difficult and debated texts in the entire New Testament (2 Thess. 2:1-12), it is next to impossible to find a commentary with an interpretation of this text with which there are no unresolved problems. Green's outstanding commentary is not without its own problems on this text, but all things considered, this is probably the best commentary on these letters currently available. It contains much helpful background information and very helpful theological insight. [Full Review]
Wanamaker, Charles A. The Epistles to the Thessalonians. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1990.
Wanamaker attempts to resolve some of the difficulties related to these letters by arguing that 2 Thessalonians was actually written before 1 Thessalonians. I am not persuaded, but my disagreement on this point does not mean that I do not appreciate this commentary. Like all of the commentaries in the NIGTC series, it is technical and requires some knowledge of Greek. A very useful work for those doing in-depth study. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. 1 and 2 Thessalonians. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1982.
F.F. Bruce's commentaries are always worth consulting, and his commentary on the Thessalonian letters is no exception. The fruits of a lifetime of New Testament study shine through on every page. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Beale, G. K. 1 & 2 Thessalonians. IVPNTC. InterVarsity Press, 2003.
Beale has written what many consider to be a definitive commentary on the book of Revelation, and now we have the results of his research into the Thessalonian epistles. Whether one agrees or disagrees with all of his conclusions, Beale always has interesting food for thought. [Full Review]
Witherington III, Ben. 1 and 2 Thessalonians: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary. SRC. Eerdmans, 2006.
Ben Witherington has written a series of "socio-rhetorical" commentaries on a good number of New Testament books. Some are better than others, and his volume on the Thessalonian letters is one of the better ones. The primary benefit of reading Witherington's commentaries is the wealth of contextual background information he provides. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Hosea–Jonah. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
I have mentioned Stuart's commentary in several previous posts. It is a must-read on the first five Minor Prophets. On Jonah, Stuart argues for the historicity of the book. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. “Jonah” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
I have also mentioned McComiskey's work in several previous posts. The commentary on Jonah in this volume was written by Joyce Baldwin. Baldwin also questions the arguments of those who identify Jonah as a work of fiction. [Full Review]
Alexander, T. Desmond; Baker, David W.; Waltke, Bruce K. Obadiah, Jonah, Micah. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
The most helpful introductory level commentary on Jonah is in the Tyndale series. The commentary on Jonah in this volume is written by T.D. Alexander. It is clear and concise, and Alexander also argues for the historicity of the events described in the book. [Full Review]
Estelle, Bryan D. Salvation Through Judgment And Mercy: The Gospel According to Jonah. GOT. P&R Publishing, 2005.
Readers interested in an exposition of Jonah that shows how Jonah points forward to Christ and the Gospel should consult Estelle's recent work. Although a brief work, it is thorough and thoughtful. [Full Review]
Ferguson, Sinclair B. Man Overboard!: The Story of Jonah. Banner of Truth, 2008.
Like everything written by Sinclair Ferguson, his commentary on Jonah will be a treasure trove for preachers and teachers. Ferguson exhibits a rare combination today -- the insights of one who is both a pastor and a scholar. [Full Review]
O'Brien, Peter T. Colossians, Philemon [Plagiarism Acknowledged]. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1982.
O'Brien has written the best all around commentaries on all of Paul's prison epistles. He is able to explain well both the details of the text as well as the big theological picture. He doesn't lose the forest for the trees. His commentary on Colossians and Philemon in the WBC series is less technical than his commentary on Philippians in the NIGTC series, but it is made unnecessarily difficult by the WBC format. In spite of the cumbersome format, all students of Colossians and Philemon should consult O'Brien on these two epistles. [Full Review]
Moo, Douglas J. The Letters to the Colossians and to Philemon. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2008.
The publication of any new commentary by Douglas Moo is an event. His commentary on Romans is a classic. His commentaries on other books are all outstanding. I was very excited, therefore, to see this new commentary on Colossians and Philemon. What I have read so far has been excellent. If anyone is going to give O'Brien a run for his money, it is Moo. Moo has the advantage of having written in the Pillar series -- a much more reader-friendly series than the WBC. His commentary is also able to take into consideration studies published since 1987. I am placing it in a close second place to O'Brien at this point merely because I have not finished it yet. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. The Epistles to the Colossians, to Philemon, and to the Ephesians. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1984.
There are certain authors whose work serious students of Scripture should go out of their way to read. F.F. Bruce is one of those authors. Before his death, he wrote on as astounding variety of subjects, covering all aspects of biblical studies. Among these works were a number of commentaries on various books of the Bible. His commentary on Colossians and Philemon is a perfect example of his unique combination of scholarship and readability. [Full Review]
Garland, David E. Colossians, Philemon. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1998.
The NIV Application Commentary series is a mixed bag. Some are better than others. David Garland's commentary on Colossians and Philemon is one of the commentaries in this series that should not be passed by. Garland offers great insight into the text and its contemporary application. It should be of great help to busy pastors. [Full Review]
Lucas, Dick. The Message of Colossians & Philemon. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1974.
Lucas's commentary on Colossians and Philemon is probably the best introductory level commentary on these two books. Like all of the commentaries in this series, it emphasizes the big picture and the overall flow of the text. [Full Review]
Niehaus, Jeffrey J. “Obadiah” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
The commentary on Obadiah in this volume was written by Jeff Niehaus. It is a technical but helpful study. [Full Review]
Baker, David W. Joel, Obadiah, Malachi. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2006.
David W. Baker contributed the commentary on Obadiah to the Tyndale series in 1988. While that is a very helpful introductory commentary, his "updated" version in the NIVAC series is preferable, especially for preachers and teachers who find it difficult to apply the prophetic books to our own present-day context. [Full Review]
Busenitz, Irvin A. Joel and Obadiah: A Mentor Commentary. Ment. Mentor, 2002.
Busenitz's commentary on Obadiah in the Mentor series is a very clear and helpful contribution to the field. It is thorough yet accessible. [Full Review]
Allen, Leslie C. The Books of Joel, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1976.
I have already mentioned Allen's commentary in my post on Joel. It is a slightly technical work, but it should be accessible to most pastors and laymen. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Hosea–Jonah. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
I have already mentioned in my posts on Hosea and Joel commentaries that the best commentary on the first five minor prophets is the commentary by Douglas Stuart in the Word Biblical Commentary series. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Niehaus, Jeffrey J. “Amos” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
Also mentioned in connection with my posts on Hosea and Joel is the commentary edited by Thomas McComiskey. The commentary on Amos in this volume was written by Jeff Niehaus. For those doing in-depth work on the book, this one should be consulted. [Full Review]
Paul, Shalom M. Amos. HERM. Fortress Press, 1990.
I can count on one hand the number of commentaries in the Hermeneia series that I find very helpful. This one is probably the only one I would enthusiastically recommend. It is geared toward a more scholarly audience, but it is packed with helpful insight into the meaning of Amos. Very highly recommended.
Hubbard, David Allan. Joel and Amos. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
Hubbard's commentaries on Hosea and Joel are clear and accessible. The same is true for his commentary on Amos. For those seeking an introductory level commentary, Hubbard is probably the best place to begin. [Full Review]
Andersen, Francis I.; Freedman, David Noel. Amos. AYB. Yale University Press, 1989.
Where to begin. You might not think it possible to write an almost 1000 page commentary on a book of the Bible that generally takes up less than 10 pages. You would be wrong. The introduction to the commentary by itself is 178 pages. This commentary is not for the faint of heart. It is technical and detailed almost beyond belief, but for those doing in-depth study of Amos, it is a must. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Hosea–Jonah. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
I have already mentioned in my comments on Hosea commentaries that the best commentary on the first five minor prophets is the commentary by Douglas Stuart in the Word Biblical Commentary series. Stuart argues that Joel is a late pre-exilic prophet, a view with which I agree. He also takes a minority view on the interpretation of Joel chapter 1, seeing the locust invasion as a figurative description of a human army rather than a literal locust plague. I find his arguments persuasive on this point. Whether you agree or disagree on that point, however, his commentary is always worth consulting on these books. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Dillard, Raymond B. “Joel” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
Also mentioned in connection with my post on Hosea is the commentary edited by Thomas McComiskey. The commentary on Joel in this volume was written by the late Raymond Dillard. I do not agree with Dillard's conclusions regarding the date of the book (He suggests a post-exilic date in the late fifth to mid sixth century) or the interpretation of the locust plague in chapter 1 (He argues that it is a description of a literal locust plague), but, nevertheless, his commentary is very useful, especially on the details of the Hebrew text. [Full Review]
Hubbard, David Allan. Joel and Amos. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
I placed Hubbard's commentary on Hosea in third place in my post on Hosea commentaries. His commentary on Joel also takes the bronze. He is in general agreement with Dillard on the date of the book and the interpretation of the locust plague in chapter 1. His commentary, however, is written at a much more accessible level. [Full Review]
Robertson, O. Palmer. Prophet of the Coming Day, The message of Joel. WCS. Evangelical Press, 1996.
Also written at an accessible introductory level is the commentary by O. Palmer Robertson. Robertson places the book in the late ninth or early eighth century, in the very early pre-exilic period. He appears also to take the majority view of chapter 1, seeing the description of the locust plague as a reference to literal locusts. Robertson's commentary should be supplemented by his thoughts on the book in his more recent Christ of the Prophets. [Full Review]
Allen, Leslie C. The Books of Joel, Obadiah, Jonah, and Micah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1976.
In terms of technicality, Allen's commentary on Joel falls somewhere in the middle. The NICOT series is thorough, but it remains generally accessible to most readers. In his section on Joel, Allen offers a helpful survey of the various arguments for different dates. Like Dillard, he ultimately decides in favor of an early post-exilic date. On the interpretation of chapter 1, Allen agrees with the majority view, taking the description literally. Overall, a helpful commentary. [Full Review]
O'Brien, Peter T. The Epistle to the Philippians [Plagiarism Acknowledged]. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1991.
The best commentary on the epistle to the Philippians is the work by Peter T. O'Brien. Because it is in the NIGTC series, it is more technical than the average commentary. Some knowledge of Greek is required to use it fully. O'Brien's comments are judicious and very helpful. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Silva, Moisés. Philippians. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2005.
For those who would like something a little less technical, yet still very thorough, I would recommend the commentary by Moises Silva. This second edition is a great contribution to a growing series of commentaries by Baker. [Full Review]
Thielman, Frank S. Philippians. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1995.
Preachers and teachers will find the NIVAC commentary by Thielman to be particularly useful in the preparation of sermons and lessons. Thielman gives equal attention to the original context and to contemporary application. Very helpful. [Full Review]
Hawthorne, Gerald F.; Martin, Ralph P. Philippians (Rev. ed.). WBC. Thomas Nelson, 2004.
For those who would like to consult another resource after checking O'Brien and/or Silva, Hawthorne is a good place to turn. As regular readers of this blog series know, I am not a big fan of the WBC format, but many of the commentaries in the series are well worth consulting. This is one of them. [Full Review]
Motyer, J. Alec. The Message of Philippians. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1997.
I have benefited from everything I have read by Alec Motyer. He never comments on Scripture in a detached manner. His love for the word of God and for God who gave His word always shines through. This is one of the more useful introductory level commentaries on Paul's epistle to the Philippians. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Hosea–Jonah. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
The single best commentary on the first five minor prophets is the commentary by Douglas Stuart in the Word Biblical Commentary series. The commentary on Hosea within this volume is 220 pages of the total. Stuart deals with the details of the text as well as the big picture. He is especially helpful at tracing the curses and blessings proclaimed by the prophets back to their Mosaic origin. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
McComiskey, Thomas Edward. “Hosea” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
Originally published as a three volume set (now available in one volume), this work contains some very helpful commentaries on the minor prophets. The editor, Thomas McComiskey, is also the author of the 237 page commentary on Hosea in the larger work. The layout of the commentary (at least in the old three volume set) is somewhat unusual. The more technical commentary on the Hebrew text runs continuously across the top of the page, while explanation runs across the bottom. Sometimes this requires a lot of back and forth page flipping, but the comments are well worth it. [Full Review]
McComiskey, Thomas Edward. “Hosea” in The Minor Prophets: An Exegetical and Expository Commentary (in one volume). Baker Academic, 2009.
Originally published as a three volume set (now available in one volume), this work contains some very helpful commentaries on the minor prophets. The editor, Thomas McComiskey, is also the author of the 237 page commentary on Hosea in the larger work. The layout of the commentary (at least in the old three volume set) is somewhat unusual. The more technical commentary on the Hebrew text runs continuously across the top of the page, while explanation runs across the bottom. Sometimes this requires a lot of back and forth page flipping, but the comments are well worth it. [Full Review]
Hubbard, David Allan. Hosea. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1990.
The Tyndale Commentary series is one of the most consistently good series available. Hubbard's commentary on Hosea is a good example why. The book is somewhat longer than one would expect for a commentary in this series on a book the size of Hosea, but that allows Hubbard to dig deeper into the meaning of the text. The result is a very valuable introductory level commentary. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. The Message of Hosea. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1991.
As I have mentioned in previous posts, students of Scripture should read anything they can by Derek Kidner. His commentaries are models for what introductory level commentaries should be. His commentary on Hosea is no exception. It is a helpful introductory level commentary that should be of use to a wide variety of readers. [Full Review]
Andersen, Francis I.; Freedman, David Noel. Hosea. AYB. Yale University Press, 1980.
For those seeking an exhaustive commentary on Hosea, there is probably no better place to turn than Andersen and Freedman's massive 720 page commentary. Although written from a slightly critical perspective, this work remains a necessary resource for those doing in-depth study of the book. [Full Review]
Young, Edward J. Daniel. GEN. Banner of Truth, 1973.
There are a number of good conservative commentaries on the book of Daniel, but I still find the older work of E.J. Young to be one of the most helpful. When it comes to the book of Daniel, it is doubtful that any reader will agree with every conclusion of a single commentator, and I disagree with Young on a few points. Young, however, is usually the first work I look at when I turn to commentaries on Daniel. Still very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Duguid, Iain M. Daniel. REC. P&R Publishing, 2008.
Iain Duguid's work on Daniel in the Reformed Expository Commentary series is an outstanding reference. This commentary should be of use to both pastors and general readers. [Full Review]
Ferguson, Sinclair B. Daniel. TPC. Thomas Nelson, 2002.
Students of Scripture should read anything that Sinclair Ferguson publishes, and his commentary on Daniel is no exception. Although aimed specifically at pastors, this commentary is accessible to a general readership as well. Very helpful. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. Daniel. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1999.
The NIVAC commentaries are hit and miss. Some are very helpful, while others overemphasize one or another feature of the series to the neglect of the others. Longman's commentary on Daniel is an example of one of the better works in the series. Longman's strength is in his literary analysis, and this is a strength of this commentary. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Lucas, Ernest C. Daniel. ApOTC. IVP Academic, 2002.
Although Lucas does not settle firmly on an early or late date for Daniel (He concludes that it is possible to make a reasonable case for either date), he has written a commentary that is worth consulting. This commentary is slightly more technical than the four listed above, but it is not so technical that the average reader cannot use it. All Hebrew and Aramaic is transliterated. A very good contribution to the literature on Daniel. [Full Review]
Block, Daniel I. The Book of Ezekiel. 2 Vols. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1998.
It is difficult to decide between the commentaries by Block and Duguid (See #2 below), but because of its comprehensiveness, I have to consider Block's commentary the most helpful overall. His massive commentary deals with every individual text in detail, but also steps back to discuss the theological implications of each major passage. There are also a number of helpful excursuses on a variety of important topics. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Duguid, Iain M. Ezekiel. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1999.
Duguid's commentary runs a very close second to Block in my estimation. For those who do not need the detail of Block, Duguid is the place to go. His is a very careful reading of the book from a Reformed perspective. Very helpful and highly recommended. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Ezekiel. TPC. Thomas Nelson, 2002.
Douglas Stuart has written what I consider to be perhaps the most helpful commentary on Exodus and definitely the best commentary on the first five minor prophets. Both of those commentaries are more technical in nature than this commentary on Ezekiel, but the commentary on Ezekiel is still outstanding. Stuart always has helpful insight into whatever text he is discussing, and when dealing with a book as difficult as Ezekiel, such insight is invaluable. [Full Review]
Thomas, Derek W. H. God Strengthens: Ezekiel Simply Explained. WCS. Evangelical Press, 1993.
For those seeking an introductory level commentary on the book of Ezekiel, the best place to turn is this commentary by Derek Thomas. Thomas is a Reformed scholar with a heart for God, for His Word, and for His people that comes through on every page. [Full Review]
Fairbairn, Patrick. The Visions of Ezekiel. Wakeman Trust, 2000.
Patrick Fairbairn was a prominent Scottish Presbyterian of the nineteenth century. He is most well-known for his books on the interpretation of prophecy and on typology. In this classic commentary, he puts his principles of interpretation to work, and the result is a commentary that should still be consulted today. As far as the cover art on this reprint is concerned, I have no comment. [Full Review]
O'Brien, Peter T. The Letter to the Ephesians [Plagiarism Acknowledged]. PNTC. Eerdmans, 1999.
When it comes to the so-called prison epistles of Paul, the commentaries of Peter O'Brien are the place to begin. He has written the best commentaries on Colossians & Philemon (WBC), Philippians (NIGTC), and Ephesians. This commentary in the Pillar series in the most accessible of the three works. O'Brien engages thoroughly and carefully with the text, providing numerous insights along the way. This commentary should be on the desk of every student of Scripture. [Full Review]
Hoehner, Harold W. Ephesians: An Exegetical Commentary. Baker Books, 2002.
In terms of sheer size and scope (960 pages), Harold Hoehner's commentary on Ephesians is the place to turn for those seeking a comprehensive conservative evangelical treatment of this epistle. Hoehner has long been a professor of New Testament at Dallas Theological Seminary, so his dispensationalism shines through at certain points. This is not a reason, however, to ignore, this masterful work. There are more than a few very helpful insights in this massive volume. His section on the authorship of the epistle is invaluable. [Full Review]
Lincoln, Andrew T. Ephesians. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1990.
Lincoln is a world renowned exegete, and his commentary on Ephesians is an example of how he gained this reputation. I disagree with his conclusion that Paul was not the author of the epistle, but thankfully, his conclusions regarding authorship do not affect his exegesis of specific texts much. The commentary is well worth consulting. [Full Review]
Hodge, Charles. Ephesians. CCC. Crossway, 1994.
Charles Hodge was not only one of the Reformed church's greatest theologians, he was also an outstanding exegete. His classic commentary on Ephesians is still worth reading today. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. The Epistles to the Colossians, to Philemon, and to the Ephesians. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1984.
F.F. Bruce was one of the last generation's most prolific evangelical authors. He wrote numerous commentaries and other works, and I have personally benefited from everything that I have read by him. His commentary on Ephesians is in a volume that also contains his commentaries on Colossians and Philemon, so it is not as thorough as some of the commentaries mentioned above, but Bruce is always worth consulting. [Full Review]
Garrett, Duane A.; House, Paul R. Song of Songs, Lamentations. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 2004.
Aside from the standard drawbacks of the WBC format, the commentary by House on the book of Lamentations is the best place to begin. He deals with every aspect of the text and digs into the theology of the book. Although somewhat technical, it is very useful. [Full Review]
Dearman, J. Andrew. Jeremiah, Lamentations. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2002.
With a book like Lamentations, it is sometimes difficult to comprehend the contemporary significance. Dearman does an outstanding job showing the way in which this book remains very relevant 2500 years after the first destruction of Jerusalem. This commentary will be particularly helpful for pastors. [Full Review]
Ryken, Philip Graham. Jeremiah and Lamentations: From Sorrow to Hope. PtW. Crossway, 2001.
Ryken's commentaries are always clear and helpful. This commentary is no exception and is a goldmine for preachers and teachers. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. Jeremiah, Lamentations. UBOT. Hendrickson Publishers, 2008.
I have already mentioned Longman's commentary in connection with Jeremiah. His commentary on Lamentations in the same volume is equally helpful. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Lamentations: A Mentor Commentary. Ment. Mentor, 2008.
This new commentary is a great contribution to the existing works on Lamentations. Mackay is always insightful and practical. Thorough but not overly technical. [Full Review]
Thompson, John A. The Book of Jeremiah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1980.
Probably the best overall commentary on the book of Jeremiah is J.A. Thompson's work in the NICOT series. Although it is moderately technical in places, all Hebrew is transliterated and fully explained. It is therefore accessible to most readers. Thompson writes from an evangelical perspective and offers numerous helpful insights into the meaning of this book. [Full Review]
Lundbom, Jack R. Jeremiah. 3 Vols. AYB. Yale University Press, 2004.
Those looking for an exhaustive technical commentary on Jeremiah will find Lundbom's three-volume work a treasure trove of valuable information. The first volume contains a lengthy introduction dealing with the standard introductory issues of composition and context. Lundbom also deals with the theology of Jeremiah in this introductory section. The bulk of the three volumes is devoted to commentary on the text. Lundbom approaches Jeremiah's work section by section, with detailed notes as well as section summaries. Volumes 1 and 3 also contain some very informative appendices. Highly recommended for the serious student of Jeremiah. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Jeremiah: A Mentor Commentary. 2 Vols. Ment. Mentor, 2015.
Mackay's commentary on Jeremiah is detailed without being overly technical. It will prove especially helpful for Bible teachers and pastors who are looking for help with exposition of the text. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. Jeremiah, Lamentations. UBOT. Hendrickson Publishers, 2008.
This recent commentary by a well-known evangelical author fills a gap by providing for a general audience the fruits of the most up-to-date scholarship on the book of Jeremiah. Although easily accessible, Longman provides numerous literary and theological insights into the book. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. The Message of Jeremiah. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1987.
Students of the Bible should read anything written by Derek Kidner. His commentaries are always accessible and insightful, and this one is no exception. For a general reader wanting to know the relevance of Jeremiah for today, Kidner's work would be an excellent place to start. [Full Review]
Ryken, Philip Graham. Galatians. REC. P&R Publishing, 2005.
Philip Ryken's commentary is not the most technical commentary available, but in terms of getting the basic message of the book across, it is certainly one of the best. Written by an able Reformed pastor/scholar, this volume should prove especially helpful to pastors and teachers. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. The Epistle to the Galatians. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1982.
The NIGTC series is a technical commentary series requiring knowledge of Greek to use fully. Bruce's commentary in the series is a very helpful contribution for those who wish to dig deeper into the original text of Paul's letter. [Full Review]
George, Timothy. Galatians. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1994.
Derek Thomas describes this commentary as "wonderful," and I concur. It is one of the better volumes in the NAC series and complements Ryken's work nicely. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. Galatians - Paul's Charter of Christian Freedom. InterVarsity Press, 2003.
Anyone who enjoys reading good commentaries should make an effort to get everything by Leon Morris. His works are always careful, insightful, and edifying. [Full Review]
Luther, Martin. Galatians. CCC. Crossway, 1998.
I would be remiss if I did not mention the great classic commentary by Martin Luther. This commentary has been an inspiration to thousands. It should not be neglected by anyone interested in Paul's letter. [Full Review]
Motyer, J. Alec. The Prophecy of Isaiah. InterVarsity Press, 1998.
The best commentary on Isaiah, hands down, is Motyer's stand alone volume published by InterVarsity Press. It is semi-technical, so those who are not trained in the biblical languages may find some sections more difficult than others, but the wealth of exegetical insight is worth the effort. For those who would like to gain the benefits of Motyer's work without the technicalities, he has also contributed the volume on Isaiah to the Tyndale series. This smaller volume is not simply a summary of the larger work. Motyer went back to the text, and this smaller volume contains many helpful insights not found in the larger work. [Full Review]
Oswalt, John N. The Book of Isaiah. 2 Vols. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1998.
The completion of John Oswalt's commentary on Isaiah in 1998 was a major blessing to the Christian church. This work, which replaced E. J. Young's older three-volume commentary on Isaiah in the NICOT series, is a model of careful evangelical scholarship. It should be on the desk of every student of the Old Testament. It should be consulted along with Motyer. Oswalt has also written a less technical commentary on Isaiah for the NIV Application Commentary series. This volume does not replace the larger two-volume work, but it will be of use to busy pastors. [Full Review]
Young, Edward J. The Book of Isaiah. Eerdmans, 1992.
Edward J. Young was one of the founding faculty at Westminster Theological Seminary and taught Old Testament there for many years. His massive three-volume commentary on Isaiah is something of a modern classic among Reformed students of Scripture. It has been replaced in the NICOT series by the fine work of Oswalt, but it should not be relegated to the dust bin. There is much of value in these volumes. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Isaiah: Volume 1 - Chapters 1-39. EPSC. Evangelical Press, 2008.
This new commentary in the EP Study Commentary series is not yet complete, but based on the first volume, it will be a standard work for many years. It is long at 864 pages, but it is not overly technical and should be accessible to most pastors. Mackay works through each section of the book, verse by verse, and concludes with practical reflections. [Full Review]
Webb, Barry G. The Message of Isaiah. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1996.
Those who are looking for a brief non-technical commentary on the book of Isaiah would do well to consider the volume by Barry Webb in the Bible Speaks Today series. Although the series does not give the space to go into great detail, Webb makes the most of it and offers very illuminating insight into the text. [Full Review]
Gledhill, Tom. The Message of the Song of Songs. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1994.
Tom Gledhill's commentary on the Song of Songs is accessible to any reader, but the fact that it is accessible does not mean that it is simplistic. In fact, in places it is truly profound and insightful. Gledhill sees the book for what it is - a poetic exploration of human love that points beyond itself to the Creator and Redeemer. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Carr, G. Lloyd. The Song of Solomon. TOTC. IVP Academic, 2009.
Lloyd Carr's contribution to the Tyndale series of commentaries is a very helpful work on the Song of Solomon. Like Gledhill, Carr takes a non-allegorical approach to the book, and provides numerous insights. [Full Review]
Hess, Richard S. Song of Songs. BCOT. Baker Academic, 2005.
Among the more advanced commentaries written from an evangelical perspective, the work by Richard Hess is probably the most helpful. In addition to careful exegesis, Hess provides insightful reflections on the theology of the book. This is something missing in too many commentaries. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. Song of Songs. NICOT. Eerdmans, 2001.
For those seeking a thorough exegetical commentary, Longman's work in the NICOT series is a good resource. He approaches the book as a poem (or more precisely an anthology of poems) about the male-female relationship, which itself is analogous to the relationship between God and His people. [Full Review]
Provan, Iain W. Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2001.
I have already mentioned this volume in the post on Ecclesiastes. The section of the book on the Song of Songs should prove just as helpful to preachers and others looking for practical application. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. The Message of Ecclesiastes. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1991.
Derek Kidner's commentaries are always helpful, and since one of his areas of expertise is Old Testament Wisdom Literature, his commentary on Ecclesiastes is one of his best. It is a popular level work, accessible to any reader, yet it still contains profound insight and application. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Eaton, Michael. Ecclesiastes. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1983.
Like all of the commentaries in the Tyndale series, Eaton's work is clear and concise. Eaton views Ecclesiastes as an apologetic essay. It defends the life of faith in God by detailing how terrible the alternative is. Life without God, according to Ecclesiastes, is futile. With all of the different approaches to interpreting Ecclesiastes, I find Eaton's particularly helpful. [Full Review]
Provan, Iain W. Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2001.
With a book like Ecclesiastes, it is sometimes difficult to know how it should be applied. The very format of the NIVAC series demands reflection on application. Provan offers helpful insight into the meaning of the book and its relevance today. This work will prove especially helpful to preachers. [Full Review]
Hubbard, David Allan. Ecclesiastes & Song of Solomon. TPC. Thomas Nelson, 2002.
Another commentary that should be consulted by preachers is the contribution to The Preacher's Commentary series by David Hubbard. Between Hubbard and Provan, preachers should be able to help their people understand more clearly this difficult portion of God's inerrant Word. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. The Book of Ecclesiastes. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1997.
Longman's approach to Ecclesiastes differs from that of Eaton somewhat. Like many, Longman argues that the monologue by Qohelet (the main speaker in the book) is framed by the words of a narrator. According to Longman, however, Qohelet is a skeptic with no hope. Longman argues that the narrator uses Qohelet's monologue to teach his son about the dangers of such skepticism. The positive teaching of the book, then, is found in the words of the narrator. Not all will agree with his interpretation, but it is worth examining. [Full Review]
Harris, Murray J. The Second Epistle to the Corinthians. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 2005.
For those seeking an exhaustive examination of the Greek text, Harris's commentary is the resource to consult. This massive commentary (1,117 pages) deals with every imaginable question regarding the Greek text. For those doing serious in-depth study of the book, it is invaluable. [Full Review]
Barnett, Paul W. The Second Epistle to the Corinthians. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1997.
Paul Barnett's commentary on 2 Corinthians is one of those commentaries that is so well written that one can easily read it straight through - rather than treating it as a reference work and consulting whatever section one is researching. It is very readable and accessible. One of the major strengths of the commentary is the fact that Barnett deals not only with the basic exegetical issues but also discusses the theology of the letter. In other words, he doesn't lose sight of the forest for the trees. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Hodge, Charles. 2 Corinthians. CCC. Crossway, 1995.
Charles Hodge was a professor at Princeton Seminary in the nineteenth century and a stalwart Reformed theologian. He also wrote a number of biblical commentaries. His commentary on the letters to the Corinthians is a classic. There are many who would ignore these older commentaries in favor of newer works, but in this case at least, that would be a major mistake. Hodge's work is filled with valuable insight into Paul's letter. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Matera, Frank J. II Corinthians. NTL. Presbyterian Publishing, 2003.
Generally speaking, I am not impressed by many of the volumes in the Old Testament Library and New Testament Library series. Many of the contributors are in knee-jerk sympathy with higher critical views of Scripture. There are, however, a handful of volumes that should be consulted. Frank Matera's commentary on 2 Corinthians is one such volume. It is readable and insightful. [Full Review]
Kruse, Colin G. 2 Corinthians. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1987.
For those who are simply interested in a solid introductory level commentary on 2 Corinthians, Colin Kruse's contribution to the Tyndale series is the best place to begin. As with the other Tyndale volumes, this one is clear, concise, and to the point, without being simplistic. [Full Review]
Waltke, Bruce K. The Book of Proverbs. 2 Vols. NICOT. Eerdmans, 2005.
Sometimes recommending the best commentary on a given biblical book is difficult. In the case of Proverbs, it is simple. Bruce Waltke's two-volume commentary is truly a gift to the church. The introduction in the first volume thoroughly covers issues such as genre and the theology of the book. The commentary proper reveals Waltke's comprehensive grasp of all of the issues related to the interpretation of this inspired book. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Hubbard, David Allan. Proverbs. TPC. Thomas Nelson, 2002.
Those who are preaching or teaching through Proverbs will want to supplement Waltke's work with a commentary that reflects on various issues related to application. Hubbard's work is the best place to turn for this. While not as comprehensive as Waltke, Hubbard does not neglect addressing the difficult questions, all the while remaining clear and readable. [Full Review]
Van Leeuwen, Raymond C. “Proverbs” in Proverbs - Sirach. NIB. Abingdon Press, 1997.
Van Leeuwen is a recognized scholar in the field of biblical wisdom literature, and his understanding of this genre is reflected in his commentary. There is more reflection on the theology of the book here than in most commentaries. If you can find a copy in a library, this work on Proverbs is worth consulting. [Full Review]
Longman III, Tremper. Proverbs. BCOT. Baker Academic, 2006.
Longman is the general editor of the Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalms, and the contributor of the volume on Proverbs. Longman deals not only with the details of the text, but also with literary and theological questions. This does not mean, however, that the book is overly technical and inaccessible to laymen. It is quite readable. All in all, I find this commentary very helpful in getting to the heart of the matter of the text. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. Proverbs. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
As noted in the introductory comments to my post on the Top 5 Job commentaries, Kidner has written one of the more helpful introductions to biblical wisdom literature. Here he applies that knowledge to one specific example, the book of Proverbs. As with the other Tyndale commentaries, this is an introductory level work, but it is probably the best of the introductory level works on the book. [Full Review]
VanGemeren, Willem A. “Psalms” in Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs. EBC. Zondervan, 1991.
It may appear that a commentary on the book of Psalms that is bound together in a volume that covers Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Songs as well would not have enough space to be worthwhile. In the case of VanGemeren's commentary on Psalms, such an assumption would be a terrible mistake. His commentary takes up 880 pages out of a total of 1245 (a little more than two-thirds of the whole). Along with Carson's commentary on Matthew, it is one of the two or three best commentaries in the Expositor's Bible Commentary. It is certainly the most helpful commentary on the Psalms that I have yet read. For each Psalm, VanGemeren provides a substantive introduction followed by expository comments and textual notes on every verse. In many cases, these comments are then followed by an Appendix dealing more fully with some important issue in that particular Psalm. I cannot recommend this commentary highly enough. It should be used by every student of Scripture. [A thoroughly expanded and revised version (1024 pages) of the commentary is due to be published on December 1, 2008]. [Full Review]
Wilson, Gerald H. Psalms, Volume 1: 1–72. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2002.
The NIVAC series is a mixed bag, but Gerald Wilson's initial volume on the Psalms is one of the standouts. The NIVAC series divides comments into three sections: Original Meaning, Bridging Contexts, and Contemporary Significance. In most of the commentaries in this series, the author will do very well in one or maybe two of those sections. Wilson is one of the few who succeeds in all three. To the best of my knowledge, he will not be writing the second volume on Psalms in the NIVAC series, but this should not deter students of Scripture from using this first volume, which covers Psalms 1-72. [Full Review]
Williams, Donald M. Psalms. 2 Vols. TPC. Thomas Nelson, 2002.
I ran across this commentary years ago when it was part of the now defunct Mastering the Old Testament series. I have always found something of value when I have opened these volumes to see what Williams has to say on a given Psalm. This is a non-technical, highly readable commentary, with a strongly devotional and practical approach. It is well worth consulting. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. Psalms. 2 Vols. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
Kidner's commentaries are always worth reading, and for those looking for a basic introductory level commentary on the Psalms, this is a great place to start. The comments are clear and very concise, but always reflect the extensive learning and insight of the author. With commentaries, it is generally best to choose them on a book by book basis. Most sets are a very mixed bag. The Tyndale set is one of the very few I would suggest as a whole. It is very consistent, and Kidner's contributions are one reason for this. [Full Review]
Clines, David J. A. Job. 3 Vols. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 2009.
As readers of this series of blog posts will know, I find the layout of the Word Biblical Commentaries a bit exasperating. However, some of the commentaries in the series are so good that it is worth the effort to deal with the poor editorial decisions of the publisher. Clines' commentary on Job is one of those works. Although it is not yet complete (the final volume will cover chapters 38-41 and include extensive indexes), this is the best commentary available on the book. Clines is one of those commentators who realizes the necessity of dealing not only with the minutiae of the text, but with the big picture as well. It is a more technical commentary, but those who take the time to work through it will be rewarded. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Hartley, John E. The Book of Job. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1988.
Hartley's commentary on Job is not as comprehensive or technical as Clines' work, but it is not written at an introductory level either. It is a thorough and demanding work that supplements Clines well. Readers will find much insight into the meaning of Job here. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Andersen, Francis I. Job. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
For those seeking a more introductory level commentary on the book of Job, Francis Anderson's commentary is the best place to start. Anderson is a renowned scholar, and the commentary reflects his learning without becoming overly technical. Virtually any reader should be able to pick up this volume and work their way through it with little difficulty. A very helpful introductory commentary. [Full Review]
Smick, Elmer B. “Job” in 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Job. EBC. Zondervan, 1988.
I may be somewhat partial to the commentary by Elmer Smick because he was one of my professors during the final years of his life. He is not as well-known as some of the other commentators mentioned in these posts, but he was a godly man, and his devotion to Jesus Christ is evident on the pages of his commentary on Job. [Full Review]
Atkinson, David. The Message of Job. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1991.
The Bible Speaks Today volumes vary in terms of quality and helpfulness. The volume on Job by David Atkinson is one of the more helpful works in the series. There is much of practical value here. [Full Review]
Thiselton, Anthony C. The First Epistle to the Corinthians. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 2000.
Anthony Thiselton's commentary on 1 Corinthians is the most thorough and complete commentary on this book available in English. Thiselton set forth to address virtually every imaginable question that one could ask about the text, and he appears to have succeeded. Although quite readable, this is a technical commentary on the Greek text, so it is not for everyone. For those who do not have enough background in the Greek language to use a technical commentary, Thiselton has also produced something of an abridged version with more focus on practical application. Pastors may find the abridged volume more immediately helpful, but all students should consult the larger work as well. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Barnett, Paul W. 1 Corinthians: Holiness and Hope of a Rescued People. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2000.
Paul Barnett is an outstanding commentator, and I would recommend any student of Scripture work through this commentary on Paul's letter to the Corinthians. It is accessible to students at almost any level. Barnett sees 1 Corinthians as containing a series of short sermons, and his insight into the text and its contemporary application is extremely helpful. [Full Review]
Hodge, Charles. 1 Corinthians. CCC. Crossway, 1995.
Charles Hodge was a professor at Princeton Seminary in the nineteenth century and a stalwart Reformed theologian. He also wrote a number of biblical commentaries. His commentary on the letters to the Corinthians is a classic. There are many who would ignore these older commentaries in favor of newer works, but in this case at least, that would be a major mistake. Hodge's work is filled with valuable insight into Paul's letter. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Barrett, Charles K. The First Epistle to the Corinthians. BNTC. Hendrickson Publishers, 1993.
Barrett's commentary on the First Epistle to the Corinthians falls into the "intermediate" range of difficulty. Most students will find it accessible, but if you are coming to the text for the first time, there are other commentaries that would make a better place to begin (See Barnett above). For pastors or teachers who are working through 1 Corinthians, however, Barrett's work should not be missed. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. 1 Corinthians. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1986.
The late Leon Morris has written a number of great commentaries. His commentary on 1 Corinthians in the Tyndale series is one of those. Space limitations in the series preclude comprehensiveness, but Morris can usually say more in a few pages than most commentators can say in an entire book. This introductory level commentary will benefit any who take the time to read it. [Full Review]
Jobes, Karen H. Esther. NIVAC. Zondervan, 1999.
Karen Jobes has written the most engaging, interesting, and helpful commentary on the book of Esther presently available. Her knowledge of the text is extensive, and her insights into current application are valuable. The commentary is accessible to laymen, but should be useful to pastors and scholars as well. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. Esther. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1984.
Joyce Baldwin was among the most consistent commentators of the previous generation. This commentary on Esther in the Tyndale series is a perfect example of the value of her work. Clear, concise, and to the point -- always an asset in commentaries. [Full Review]
Duguid, Iain M. Esther and Ruth. REC. P&R Publishing, 2005.
Duguid's commentary would be a good addition to the library of any pastor or teacher. His exposition of the text is careful and clear. There is also a very helpful focus on contemporary application. [Full Review]
Bush, Frederic. Ruth, Esther. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1996.
For those seeking a more extensive commentary on the book of Esther, Frederic Bush's work in the WBC series is a good place to start. Although a bit too technical for most readers, it will be of benefit to seminary students and others doing in-depth study of the text. [Full Review]
Breneman, Mervin. Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1993.
I have already mentioned Breneman's commentary in my post on the top five Ezra-Nehemiah commentaries. The same evaluation applies here. A very helpful work. [Full Review]
McConville, J. Gordon. Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther. DSB. Westminster John Knox Press, 2006.
I have benefited from many of McConville's works, and this brief introductory level commentary is no exception. I find Kidner somewhat more useful, but McConville should not be ignored. [Full Review]
Breneman, Mervin. Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1993.
Breneman's commentary does not compare with Fensham's and Williamson's, but for those seeking helpful summaries of the more technical work that has been done on these books, his is a helpful work. [Full Review]
Kidner, Derek. Ezra and Nehemiah. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 1981.
For those seeking a good introductory level commentary on the books of Ezra and Nehemiah, I would recommend Derek Kidner's commentary. He is one of those commentators whose work is consistently good. [Full Review]
Williamson, H. G. M. Ezra-Nehemiah. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1985.
Williamson's commentary is a scholarly standard on these books and should be consulted in conjunction with Fensham's work. There is more technical information in Williamson's work, but it is less user friendly due to the cumbersome format of the WBC. [Full Review]
Fensham, F. Charles. The Books of Ezra and Nehemiah. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1983.
Ezra and Nehemiah are challenging books for contemporary readers. The best commentaries for those seeking to understand these books are the commentaries by Fensham and Williamson [WBC]. I find Fensham's work somewhat more helpful simply because the NICOT format is much more reader friendly. [Full Review]
Braun, Roddy L. 1 Chronicles. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1986.
Although they are on the more technical side, the commentaries by Braun and Dillard in the Word Biblical Commentary series are indispensable for serious study of the text. Each also offers helpful theological insight, sometimes missing from technical commentaries. The layout of the Word Biblical Commentaries can take some getting used to, but in the case of these two works, it is worth the effort. [Full Review]
Dillard, Raymond B. 2 Chronicles. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
Although they are on the more technical side, the commentaries by Braun and Dillard in the Word Biblical Commentary series are indispensable for serious study of the text. Each also offers helpful theological insight, sometimes missing from technical commentaries. The layout of the Word Biblical Commentaries can take some getting used to, but in the case of these two works, it is worth the effort. [Full Review]
Pratt Jr., Richard L. 1 and 2 Chronicles: A Mentor Commentary. Ment. Mentor, 2006.
Pratt's commentary on 1 & 2 Chronicles is distinctive in that it concerns itself primarily with the theological aspects of the books. For those who have had difficulty understanding the relevance and significance of Chronicles, this will be a good place to start. It is an intermediate level commentary that should be of use to laymen, pastors, and scholars. [Full Review]
Selman, Martin J. 2 Chronicles. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 2008.
As with many other commentaries in the Tyndale series, Selman's work is clear and concise without being simplistic. This is a good place to begin for laymen who are looking for a basic introduction to the books. [Full Review]
Hill, Andrew E. 1 and 2 Chronicles. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2003.
It is one thing to understand what the original author of Chronicles was saying to post-exilic Israel, it is another to understand how the teaching of Chronicles applies to the 21st century church. The strength of the NIV Application series is in bridging the gap between the original audience and today's audience. Hill accomplishes this goal nicely, resulting in a work that will prove especially valuable for pastors and teachers. [Full Review]
Japhet, Sara. I and II Chronicles. OTL. Westminster John Knox Press, 1993.
Japhet's commentary is written from a moderately critical perspective, so it must be used with care, but its thoroughness makes it worth consulting. It is a must for seminary students doing in-depth study of these books. [Full Review]
Moo, Douglas J. The Epistle to the Romans. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1996.
Douglas Moo's commentary on Romans is judged by many to be the best all around evangelical commentary on this epistle. It is thorough, but it is not overly technical. Moo presents his exegetical arguments carefully and cogently. This reader is especially impressed by his treatment of Romans 11. In terms of intermediate-advanced level commentaries, this one is the best place to begin. [Full Review]
Hodge, Charles. Romans. CCC. Crossway, 1994.
Although written well over one hundred years ago, Charles Hodge's commentary on Romans should still be required for those doing serious study of the text. Hodge was a systematic theologian, but contrary to what many today think, this was no hindrance to doing good exegetical work. This commentary is rich in exegetical and theological insight. [Full Review]
Murray, John. The Epistle to the Romans. Eerdmans, 1960.
Originally part of the NICNT series, until it was replaced by Moo's work in 1996, John Murray's commentary on Romans remains a valuable work well worth consulting. Like Hodge, Murray was a systematic theologian, and like Hodge, this did not in any way hinder his exegetical work. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. The Epistle to the Romans. PNTC. Eerdmans, 1988.
Students of Scripture should read anything they can find by Leon Morris, and his commentary on Romans is no exception. Morris is always careful and considered in his judgment. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Cranfield, C. E. B. Romans. 2 Vols. ICC. T&T Clark, 1975.
Anyone doing serious in-depth study of the book of Romans will need to consult Cranfield's technical two-volume commentary. This is one of the most thorough commentaries on this book, and because it deals with every aspect of the Greek text, it does require a working knowledge of the original language. Readers should also be aware that Cranfield at times takes a somewhat Barthian approach to Romans, so the commentary should be used with care. For those who do not require the detailed exegetical information an abridged version is also available. [Full Review]
Davis, Dale Ralph. 2 Kings: The Power and the Fury. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2005.
I have already mentioned the high quality of Davis' commentaries on the books of Joshua, Judges, 1 Samuel, and 2 Samuel. His commentaries on 1 & 2 Kings are equally outstanding. These commentaries should be on the shelf of every Bible student and pastor. [Full Review]
Davis, Dale Ralph. 1 Kings: Wisdom and the Folly. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2003.
I have already mentioned the high quality of Davis' commentaries on the books of Joshua, Judges, 1 Samuel, and 2 Samuel. His commentaries on 1 & 2 Kings are equally outstanding. These commentaries should be on the shelf of every Bible student and pastor. [Full Review]
House, Paul R. 1, 2 Kings. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1995.
One of the best intermediate level commentaries on the books of 1 & 2 Kings is the commentary by Paul R. House in the NAC series. This is the commentary to which pastors should turn if they are seeking more exegetical detail than is found in the works of Davis mentioned above. House explores historical, literary, canonical, theological, and applicational concerns thoroughly and competently. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Provan, Iain W. 1 & 2 Kings. UBOT. Hendrickson Publishers, 1995.
Provan's commentary on Kings in the NIBC series may be the best individual contribution to that series. The format of the series limits the amount of space the author has, but Provan uses it wisely. He explores the theological themes of the book within its larger redemptive-historical context. Very readable and useful for pastors and teachers. [Full Review]
Wiseman, Donald J. 1 and 2 Kings. TOTC. IVP Academic, 2008.
Wiseman's contribution to the Tyndale series is another strong contribution. Although it is a bit more technical than the introductory level works by Davis, this commentary, like the others in this series, is accessible to virtually any reader. Wiseman's specialty is ancient Near Eastern history, and his insights from this field of study are evident in this work. A good introduction to the books of 1 & 2 Kings. [Full Review]
Cogan, Mordechai; Tadmor, Hayim. II Kings. AYB. Yale University Press, 1988.
Cogan and Tadmor co-wrote the volume on 2 Kings in 1988. Years later, in 2001, the commentary on 1 Kings was published. The volume on 1 Kings was written by Cogan alone. These commentaries are written from a somewhat critical perspective and should be used with care, but the author's knowledge of the ancient Near Eastern context makes these works very helpful for those interested in more technical commentaries. [Full Review]
Cogan, Mordechai. I Kings. AYB. Yale University Press, 2001.
Cogan and Tadmor co-wrote the volume on 2 Kings in 1988. Years later, in 2001, the commentary on 1 Kings was published. The volume on 1 Kings was written by Cogan alone. These commentaries are written from a somewhat critical perspective and should be used with care, but the author's knowledge of the ancient Near Eastern context makes these works very helpful for those interested in more technical commentaries. [Full Review]
Davis, Dale Ralph. 1 Samuel: Looking on the Heart. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2000.
Davis' commentaries on Joshua and Judges set a standard for readable, insightful, introductory level commentaries on the historical books of the Old Testament. His volumes on the books of Samuel maintain that high standard. These commentaries are written at a level accessible to the layman, yet they offer numerous insights for pastors and teachers that other commentaries overlook. I cannot recommend these two commentaries highly enough. [Full Review]
Tsumura, David Toshio. The First Book of Samuel. NICOT. Eerdmans, 2007.
The best intermediate-advanced level commentary on the first book of Samuel is now the commentary by David Tsumura in the NICOT series. It is very well written and very thorough. Tsumura's expertise in the languages of the ancient Near East is evident throughout. He is currently working on the follow-up volume on 2 Samuel in the same series, but given the fact that the first volume is approximately 700 pages, it may be some time before we see the completed set. When it is complete, it will likely be the standard scholarly commentary on these books for many years. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Youngblood, Ronald F. “1, 2 Samuel” in Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 & 2 Samuel. EBC. Zondervan, 1992.
Although volume 3 of the Expositor's Bible Commentary contains commentaries on Deuteronomy - 2 Samuel, Youngblood's work on Samuel takes up approximately half of the entire volume. It is one of the three best commentaries in this series (along with Carson on Matthew and VanGemeren on the Psalms). It is probably the most helpful intermediate level commentary on the books of Samuel. [Full Review]
Baldwin, Joyce. 1 and 2 Samuel. TOTC. IVP Academic, 2008.
It is almost impossible to go wrong with any of the Tyndale commentaries. Baldwin contributed several commentaries to this series, including those on Esther, Daniel, and the post-exilic prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. The commentary on the books of Samuel is a great example of Baldwin's high quality work. A very good introductory-intermediate level commentary. [Full Review]
Arnold, Bill T. 1 and 2 Samuel. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2003.
Arnold's commentary on the books of Samuel in the NIVAC series is one of the better contributions. The strength of the NIVAC series is its focus on contemporary applications, and Arnold is helpful here, but he is also concerned to deal with the original meaning of the text and does so very well. It is an engaging work. [Full Review]
Marshall, I. Howard. Acts. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1980.
For those seeking a good introductory level, non-technical commentary on the book of Acts, the volume by Marshall in the Tyndale series is a good place to start. Like the other volumes in the series it is simple to read without being simplistic in content. [Full Review]
Witherington III, Ben. The Acts of the Apostles: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary. SRC. Eerdmans, 1997.
Ben Witherington's series of "socio-rhetorical" commentaries vary in terms of their helpfulness. At over 900 pages, this is one of the largest in the series, and one of the most useful. There is a large amount of information in this commentary that is not found in others, and the extensive bibliography is a plus as well. [Full Review]
Barrett, Charles K. Acts. 2 Vols. ICC. T&T Clark, 1994.
Like the commentary on Matthew by Davies and Allison, this two-volume commentary on Acts in the ICC series is massive and technical. But it is also thoroughly exhaustive. It is written from a moderately critical perspective, so it should be used with care, but for students and pastors needing to look at every aspect of the text, it is invaluable (The publisher apparently thinks so too because these volumes are not cheap). There is also a one-volume abridged version available for those who do not need all of the technical details. [Full Review]
Bruce, F. F. Fee, Gordon D. ed. The Book of Acts. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1988.
First published in 1954, F.F. Bruce's commentary on Acts in the NICNT series soon became a standard conservative evangelical commentary. In 1988, his commentary was revised and updated. It still remains on of the best commentaries on this book of Scripture. [Full Review]
Bock, Darrell L. Acts. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2007.
Darrell Bock's massive and outstanding two-volume commentary on the Gospel of Luke raised my expectations for his commentary on Acts in the same series. I was not disappointed. This work is equally outstanding. Like the other volumes in this series, it is somewhat technical. Greek words within the body of the text are transliterated, but if the reader does not have some understanding of Greek, it will likely become a bit confusing. [Full Review]
Duguid, Iain M. Esther and Ruth. REC. P&R Publishing, 2005.
Iain Duguid's commentary is primarily directed toward pastors and teachers, but it will benefit any reader. The commentary is less technical than many others and very practical. [Full Review]
Bush, Frederic. Ruth, Esther. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1996.
An extensive, if somewhat technical, commentary on the Book of Ruth, but one well worth consulting. [Full Review]
Hubbard Jr., Robert L. The Book of Ruth. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1989.
Robert Hubbard's commentary on Ruth is a model of how commentaries should be written. It is careful and clear. It manages to deal with both details and the big picture. This is the first commentary to which one should turn with questions about the Book of Ruth. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Davis, Dale Ralph. Judges: Such a Great Salvation. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2000.
As I mentioned in the post on Joshua commentaries, if you can only have one commentary on the historical books, get the commentaries by Davis. There are other commentaries that go into more detail on technical issues (see below), but Davis provides what most Christian readers of these books need -- a concise and readable explanation of the text that sets each book within the larger context of biblical redemptive history all without ever becoming boring or trite. This commentary, like the others, is also very practical, but it avoids the kind of moralizing exposition that rips passages out of context in order to make some vague inspirational point. [Full Review]
Block, Daniel I. Judges, Ruth. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1999.
With the book of Judges, I really need two first place "ribbons." For those looking for something more in-depth on the book of Judges, the commentary by Daniel Block in the NAC series is the place to start. It is, by far, the best intermediate-advanced level commentary on the book. If you can only afford one commentary on the Book of Judges, sell something you don't need and get Block to consult along with Davis. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Younger Jr., K. Lawson. Judges, Ruth. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2002.
Younger's volume on Judges and Ruth is one of the stronger contributions to the NIVAC series. The format of this series divides the comments on each section of text into Original Meaning, Bridging Contexts, and Contemporary Significance. This format tends to emphasize contemporary application, but Younger's comments are just as helpful in the Original Meaning section as they are in the other two. [Full Review]
Cundall, Arthur E.; Morris, Leon. Judges and Ruth. TOTC. IVP Academic, 2008.
Arthur Cundall contributed the commentary on Judges in the TOTC series. Like the other contributions to this series, it is written at an introductory level and is accessible to all readers. [Full Review]
Wilcock, Michael. The Message of Judges. BST. InterVarsity Press, 1992.
Wilcock's introductory level commentary on Judges is a helpful and practical exposition of the text. Preachers and teachers will find much of value within. [Full Review]
Carson, D. A. The Gospel According to John. PNTC. Eerdmans, 1990.
To date, the Pillar New Testament Commentaries have been consistently excellent. They are all thorough and readable, a rare combination in commentaries. I believe the consistent excellency of the series is largely due to the fact that D.A. Carson is the general editor. His own contribution on the Gospel of John set the bar very high for the other contributors. This commentary shows Carson's usual exegetical care and insight. It is an example of conservative evangelical scholarship at its best. Very highly recommended to any who want to understand better the Gospel of John. [Full Review]
Keener, Craig S. The Gospel of John: A Commentary: Two Volumes. Hendrickson Publishers, 2003.
Craig Keener's massive two-volume commentary is an impressive achievement. As with his commentary on Matthew, Keener's focus is on setting John within his first century context. He does so admirably. The commentary is so exhaustively researched that its footnotes are a virtual reference work. Keener also includes an extensive bibliography (over 150 pages). Those who are doing in-depth study of John cannot afford to be without this outstanding work. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. The Gospel according to John. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1971.
Originally published in 1971, Leon Morris's commentary on the Gospel of John quickly became a standard of conservative evangelical scholarship on the book. In 1995, a completely revised and updated edition was published bringing the classic work up to date. Morris's work may have been overshadowed by more recent commentaries, but it remains one of the best and should be consulted. [Full Review]
Ridderbos, Herman N. The Gospel of John: A Theological Commentary. Eerdmans, 1997.
Reformed readers of this blog will recognize Ridderbos from his works on the theology of Paul and the kingdom of God. His theological commentary on John was originally published in Dutch in two volumes (1987, 1992). The English translation was first published in 1997. Ridderbos's commentary, as the subtitle suggests, focuses on the theological issues raised by John in his Gospel, in particular the identity of Jesus, the "Son of Man" and "Son of God." This is a valuable and insightful commentary. [Full Review]
Köstenberger, Andreas J. John [Plagiarism Acknowledged]. BECNT. Baker Academic, 2004.
Standing in the tradition of Carson and Morris, Kostenberger has provided a fine conservative and evangelical commentary on the Gospel of John. This is a solid, thorough, and practical work that will be of benefit to students and pastors. [Full Review]
Davis, Dale Ralph. Joshua: No Falling Words. FB. Christian Focus Publications, 2000.
I will go ahead and say now that all of Dale Ralph Davis' commentaries on the Old Testament historical books are outstanding. They are non-technical, beginner-intermediate level works, but they offer more insight into these biblical books than many commentaries two or three times their size. If you can only have one commentary on each biblical book, get Davis on the historical books. [Full Review]
Hess, Richard S. Joshua. TOTC. IVP Academic, 2008.
The Tyndale Old and New Testament Commentary series is probably the most consistent commentary series available today. Most other series have some really good commentaries, some mediocre commentaries, and at least a handful of commentaries that are not very helpful at all. The volumes in the Tyndale series, on the other hand, are consistently good. The Tyndale commentary on Joshua is particularly good. Like Davis' commentary, this one is also written at an intermediate level and is accessible to all readers. [Full Review]
Howard Jr., David M. Joshua. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1998.
David M. Howard's introduction to the historical books of the Old Testament is an outstanding work. In this volume, he is able to devote much more space to Joshua. The result is a truly helpful commentary. [Full Review]
Woudstra, Marten H. The Book of Joshua. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1981.
Like the other commentaries in the NICOT series, this one is slightly more technical in nature than the commentaries mentioned above (although not much more technical than the commentary by Howard). Most of the really difficult material, however, is found in the footnotes. The body of the text is readable and insightful. Very helpful overall. [Full Review]
Butler, Trent C. Joshua. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1983.
As mentioned in previous "Top 5" posts, the Word Biblical Commentaries have a layout that is truly unfriendly to the reader. It is also a bit more technical in nature than the commentaries already mentioned. For those doing in-depth exegesis, however, it provides helpful information. [Full Review]
Craigie, Peter C. The Book of Deuteronomy. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1976.
There is such a wealth of commentaries on Deuteronomy that it is difficult to select the best. When everything is taken into consideration, however, Craigie's commentary in the NICOT series is probably still the best place to start. It is a competent and clear work written from an evangelical perspective. [Full Review]
McConville, J. Gordon. Deuteronomy. ApOTC. IVP Academic, 2002.
Another strong contender for the top spot is the recent commentary by McConville. The layout of the Apollos commentaries makes them somewhat more helpful for those seeking contemporary application. If you can afford more than one commentary on Deuteronomy, this one is well worth considering. [Full Review]
Thompson, John A. Deuteronomy. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 2008.
For those seeking a good introductory level commentary on the book of Deuteronomy, the commentary by Thompson in the Tyndale series is the best place to begin. For an introductory level commentary, it is surprisingly insightful. [Full Review]
Currid, John D. Deuteronomy. EPSC. Evangelical Press, 2006.
Combining exegesis and application, Currid's commentaries on the books of the Pentateuch have so far been very helpful. His commentary on Deuteronomy continues the standard of excellence. [Full Review]
Tigay, Jeffrey H. Deuteronomy. JPSTBC. Jewish Publication Society of America, 1996.
As mentioned in previous "Top 5" posts, the JPS Torah Commentaries are written by Jewish scholars and are highly technical. Tigay writes from a somewhat critical stance, so this commentary can only be recommended with qualification for discerning pastors and seminary students. Those doing scholarly work on Deuteronomy will find it immensely helpful. [Full Review]
Wenham, Gordon J. Numbers. TOTC. InterVarsity Press, 2008.
Gordon Wenham is among the best contemporary writers of commentaries. I consider his commentaries on Genesis and Leviticus the best available commentaries on those books. He has also written the most generally helpful commentary on the book of Numbers. The format of the Tyndale series means that this commentary is written at an introductory level. It is not as lengthy as his other works, but Wenham is able to say more of significance in one page than most commentators say in ten pages. Highly recommended. [Full Review]
Ashley, Timothy R. The Book of Numbers. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1993.
For those seeking a more thorough evangelical commentary on Numbers than the Tyndale format will allow, Ashley's work is a great place to turn. He very helpfully explores the important theological themes within the book. [Full Review]
Cole, R. Dennis. Numbers. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 2000.
The argument could be made that Cole's commentary belongs in the second position before Ashley. Both are very helpful works, and each has its own contribution to make. A pastor or student engaged in serious study of Numbers should consult both. [Full Review]
Milgrom, Jacob. Numbers. JPSTBC. Jewish Publication Society of America, 1990.
The JPS Torah commentaries are written by Jewish scholars and are quite technical, but for those who are interested in digging deeply into the text, they usually offer numerous valuable insights. This is certainly the case with Milgrom's commentary on Numbers. [Full Review]
Duguid, Iain M. Numbers: God's Presence in the Wilderness. PtW. Crossway, 2006.
I have benefited from everything I have read by Iain Duguid. His commentary on Numbers is well-written and aimed specifically at pastors. [Full Review]
Wenham, Gordon J. The Book of Leviticus. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1979.
This commentary is not only the best commentary on the book of Leviticus, it is one of the best commentaries on any book of the Bible that I have read. [Full Review]
Hartley, John E. Leviticus. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1992.
If you can afford more than one commentary on Leviticus, Hartley's commentary in the WBC series is a good choice. It supplements Wenham well. The only drawback, as with all volumes in the WBC series, is the layout. Once the reader becomes used to it, however, it is not as much of an issue. [Full Review]
Rooker, Mark F. Leviticus. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 2000.
Many of the commentaries in the NAC series are strong, and Rooker's work on Leviticus is a good example. It is both exegetically thorough and well written. [Full Review]
Milgrom, Jacob. Leviticus: A Book of Ritual and Ethics. CC. Fortress Press, 2004.
Jacob Milgrom is considered by many to be the world's foremost expert on the book of Leviticus. He has written a massive (2500 page) three-volume commentary on Leviticus in the Anchor Bible series. The Continental Commentary is a more accessible version, without all the technical details. I haven't ranked it higher because Milgrom approaches Leviticus from an unnecessarily critical stance. [Full Review]
Levine, Baruch A. Leviticus. JPSTBC. Jewish Publication Society of America, 1989.
Baruch Levine is one of the world leading scholars on the book of Leviticus, and this commentary shows it. The work is not written for the layman. It is a technical commentary on the Hebrew text. For those doing in-depth work, it should be consulted. [Full Review]
Childs, Brevard S. The Book of Exodus. OTL. Westminster John Knox Press, 1974.
Because of the author's critical stance and the book's technical nature, I can only recommend this commentary to discerning pastors and teachers. Childs begins each section of the commentary with his own translation of the Hebrew. He then offers textual and philological notes on that section. The discussion titled "Old Testament context" contains his exegesis of the text itself. The remaining three segments are what really set Childs' commentary apart. For each section of text, he discusses the New Testament use of the Old Testament text, the history of its interpretation, and any related theological issues. [Full Review]
Ryken, Philip Graham. Exodus: Saved for God's Glory. PtW. Crossway, 2005.
Ryken is the pastor of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia. His massive expository commentary is a goldmine for preachers. It is theologically deep and refreshingly practical, all the while remaining very readable. [Full Review]
Mackay, John L. Exodus: A Mentor Commentary. Ment. Mentor, 2001.
John Mackay has written a number of commentaries on the Old Testament prophetic books. In this volume, he moves to the Pentateuch with great success. His work should be consulted by every serious student of Exodus. [Full Review]
Motyer, J. Alec. The Message of Exodus. BST. InterVarsity Press, 2005.
J. Alec Motyer has written a large number of books and commentaries over the course of his career. He is particularly well known for his extensive work of the book of Isaiah. Because of the space limitations in the BST series, my expectations for his commentary on Exodus were minimal, but I was pleasantly surprised. On almost every page, the reader finds helpful insights into the meaning of the second book of Moses. Very highly recommended. [Full Review]
Stuart, Douglas. Exodus. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 2006.
I first discovered Douglas Stuart's work when I read his Old Testament Exegesis textbook. Some years later, I read his commentary on Hosea - Jonah and was very impressed. I had high expectations, therefore, when I obtained a copy of his recently published commentary on Exodus, and I was not disappointed. Stuart begins his work with a thirty page Introduction containing a very helpful emphasis on the theology of Exodus. He then moves directly into the text with a verse by verse examination of Exodus that extends approximately 750 pages. Stuart's comments on the biblical text are clear and readable. The more technical issues are relegated to the footnotes. This is now the first commentary on Exodus to which I turn. [Full Review]
Walton, John H. Genesis. NIVAC. Zondervan, 2001.
It is difficult to decide what commentary should fill the number five slot, but in terms of general helpfulness, Walton's commentary probably deserves it. The NIVAC series does not get into as many technical issues, but it excels in terms of bridging the gap between the original audience and the contemporary world. This commentary, then, will be of particular use to preachers and teachers. [Full Review]
Ross, Allen P. Creation and Blessing: A Guide to the Study and Exposition of Genesis. Baker Books, 1997.
Although not technically a commentary, this volume by Ross is an invaluable resource for expositors. If you are a pastor, you should not be without this book. [Full Review]
Hamilton, Victor P. The Book of Genesis. 2 Vols. NICOT. Eerdmans, 1995.
Like Wenham and Mathews, Hamilton writes from a generally conservative evangelical perspective. I rank Mathews slightly higher simply because Hamilton is a rather dry read. He is, however, always worth consulting. [Full Review]
Mathews, Kenneth A. Genesis. 2 Vols. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1996.
In recent years, Broadman & Holman have published a number of excellent commentaries in their New American Commentary series. In 2005, with the publication of the second volume of Kenneth Mathews' commentary on Genesis, they added another outstanding contribution. [Full Review]
Wenham, Gordon J. Genesis. 2 Vols. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1987.
The layout of the Word Biblical Commentary series is not the most reader friendly, but in the case of Gordon Wenham's commentary on Genesis, it is certainly worth the trouble. Wenham writes from a generally conservative evangelical viewpoint. His exegesis is careful and detailed and always worth consulting. [Full Review]
Cole, R. Alan. Mark. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1989.
The Tyndale commentaries are non-technical and introductory level commentaries, but they are surprisingly consistent in their high level of quality. Cole's commentary on Mark is a good example. [Full Review]
Witherington III, Ben. The Gospel of Mark: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary. SRC. Eerdmans, 2001.
I have found Witherington's "socio-rhetorical" commentaries to be a mixed bag. Some are much better than others. This commentary on the Gospel of Mark is one of his best. [Full Review]
Edwards, James R. The Gospel According to Mark. PNTC. Eerdmans, 2001.
I look forward to every new commentary in this series whose general editor is D.A. Carson. Edwards' commentary on Mark is another fine contribution. His emphasis on the theology of Mark is especially helpful. [Full Review]
Lane, William L. The Gospel of Mark. NICNT. Eerdmans, 1974.
Published in 1974, William Lane's commentary on the Gospel of Mark remains a model of clarity. Eerdmans has replaced several of the older NICOT and NICNT commentaries. There is little need for them to do so with this outstanding volume, but since they might, grab a copy while it is still in print. [Full Review]
France, R. T. The Gospel of Mark. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 2002.
In my opinion, R.T. France has not only written the best commentary on the Gospel of Matthew, he has also written the best commentary on the Gospel of Mark. The New International Greek Commentary series is technical and does require a knowledge of the Greek language [Full Review]
Marshall, I. Howard. The Gospel of Luke. NIGTC. Eerdmans, 1978.
Apparently in an attempt to make this commentary even more difficult to read than a NIGTC commentary normally is, the author incorporated all of his technical notes into the body of the text rather than using footnotes. Despite this very poor editorial choice, there is still a wealth of helpful material here for those willing to dig and use discernment. [Full Review]
Nolland, John. Luke. 3 Vols. WBC. Thomas Nelson, 1989.
Although just about as comprehensive as Bock, Nolland's massive commentary suffers from the reader-unfriendly format of the WBC. Seminary students will definitely find much of value in this work. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. Luke. TNTC. InterVarsity Press, 1988.
Christians should pick up and read anything they find by the late Leon Morris. For those who may not have the time to dig into a 2,100 page commentary and are looking for a great introductory level commentary on Luke, Morris is the place to begin. [Full Review]
Stein, Robert H. Luke. NAC. Broadman & Holman, 1993.
[After Bock], it is difficult to place the remaining commentaries [on Luke] in any particular order. I find each of them almost equally useful, albeit in different ways. Stein, for instance, has produced a very helpful intermediate level commentary for pastors and teachers. It is another fine contribution to the NAC series of commentaries. [Full Review]
Bock, Darrell L. Luke. 2 Vols. BECNT. Baker Academic, 1994.
One of the best available commentaries on the Gospel of Luke is the massive two-volume set by Darrell L. Bock, a professor of New Testament studies at Dallas Theological Seminary. Weighing in at over 2,100 total pages, this commentary is certainly comprehensive. Thankfully, it is also clear. Most readers will also find the layout of the Baker Exegetical series very reader friendly. [Full Review]
Allison Jr., Dale C.; Davies, W. D. Matthew. 3 Vols. ICC. T&T Clark, 1988.
For those doing an exhaustive study of the Gospel of Matthew, the work of Davies and Allison is indispensable. Readers should be aware that it is written from a moderately critical perspective, but in terms of comprehensiveness, there is nothing quite like this commentary. It is a highly technical commentary on the Greek text and thus not suitable for lay readers, but discerning pastors who are looking for information on every conceivable issue related to the text need look no further. [Full Review]
Morris, Leon. The Gospel According to Matthew. PNTC. Eerdmans, 1992.
Although his commentary has been overshadowed by the more recent works of France and others, one should not neglect the work of Leon Morris. [Full Review]
Keener, Craig S. Matthew. Eerdmans, 1999.
Like France and Carson, Keener is an outstanding exegete. His commentary is distinctive in its emphasis on the social-historical context of the Gospel. It also contains a very useful 150 page bibliography of secondary resources on the Gospel of Matthew. [Full Review]
Carson, D. A. “Matthew” in Matthew, Mark, Luke. EBC. Zondervan, 1984.
It is difficult to decide whether to place Carson or France in the number 1 position because both are such outstanding commentaries. Ultimately, I place France slightly ahead of Carson because of France's interpretation of Matthew 24. Carson's commentary, however, should not be neglected by anyone doing serious study of this Gospel. Carson's work is characterized by careful and sane exegesis and consideration of all interpretive options. His individual commentary in the series is also available separately as a two volume paperback [Full Review]
France, R. T. The Gospel of Matthew. NICNT. Eerdmans, 2007.
A short commentary on the Gospel of Matthew has been available by R.T. France in the Tyndale New Testament Commentary series since 1985, but in 2007, France published a much more comprehensive commentary on this Gospel in the NICNT series -- The New International Commentary on the New Testament. France's work is thorough and solidly evangelical and will be beneficial to pastors and all serious students of Scripture. His commentary is distinctive in that he takes a largely preterist approach to much of the Olivet Discourse. [Full Review]