Top Five Commentaries: Update
In June 2008 I began composing a series of blog posts recommending my “Top 5” commentaries on every book of the Bible. I finished that series in June 2009. Since that time, a number of new commentaries have been published, some of which I would highly recommend. Here are some of the highlights.
Daniel M. Doriani. Matthew, 2 vols. (Reformed Expository Commentary). This excellent two-volume commentary is one of the better contributions to this new series. Doriani’s commentary is highly insightful and filled with practical wisdom.
Knox Chamblin. Matthew, 2 vols. (A Mentor Commentary). This massive work (almost 1600 pages) is the fruit of a lifetime of teaching the Gospel of Matthew. The commentary is in-depth without losing sight of the big picture. It is scholarly without being unreadable. Very highly recommended.
J. Ramsey Michaels. John (NICNT). Since 1971, Leon Morris’s commentary on John has been a staple in the NICNT series. In 2010, this volume was replaced by J. Ramsey Michaels work in an ongoing attempt to keep the NICNT series up to date. My hope is that Eerdmans will do with Morris what they did with Murray when Moo replaced his commentary on Romans, namely, print it as a stand alone commentary. Both Morris and Michaels should be consulted on the fourth Gospel.
Roy Ciampa and Brian Rosner. The First Letter to the Corinthians (Pillar New Testament Commentary). For those who have the commentaries by Thiselton and Fee and who know the format of the Pillar series, the commentary by Ciampa and Rosner is closer in content and style to Fee. Based on what I have read in this work so far, it will now be one of the volumes I look to first when examining commentaries on Paul’s first epistle to the Corinthians.
Frank Thielman. Ephesians (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament). After the publication of O’Brien’s outstanding commentary on Ephesians in the Pillar series, one would have thought that other commentators might have waited before offering their own works on the book, but thankfully Thielman did not. Both commentaries are outstanding, and both are must-reads for students of this epistle.
1 & 2 Thessalonians
Robert J. Cara. 1 & 2 Thessalonians (EP Study Commentary). Because the epistles to the Thessalonians contain what I believe to be one of the most difficult texts in the New Testament (2 Thess. 2:1-12), I always look forward to new commentaries on these books that might provide some insight. The constraints of the EP series does not allow for exhaustive comment on every detail of the text, but Cara uses the space allowed judiciously and provides helpful insight on numerous passages.
Peter T. O’Brien. The Letter to the Hebrews (Pillar New Testament Commentary). Peter T. O’Brien is known for writing what many consider to be the best contemporary commentaries on Paul’s prison epistles. In this volume he turns his considerable exegetical skills to the book of Hebrews. This commentary is now one of the first any reader of Hebrews should turn to when examining commentaries on the book.
The St. Andrews Expositional Commentary Series
Finally, Reformation Trust and Crossway have begun working in tandem on Dr. Sproul’s St. Andrews Expositional Commentary series. This series is based on sermons preached by Dr. Sproul at St Andrews in Sanford, Florida. So far, three volumes have been published, the commentaries on Romans, the Gospel of John, and Acts. In March, 2011, the volume on 1 & 2 Peter will be published.