Sunday, January 15, 2006

Top Ten Recent Commentaries on Matthew
Such lists are always highly subjective of course, and I suppose I should say that I'm certainly open to changing my mind as I learn. In any case, here are my current favorite commentaries, numbers 2-5--I'll post number one tomorrow. 3-5 are a virtual tie, thus the funny numbering. Since comparing commentaries is like comparing apples and oranges, these are graded subjectively based on their goals, value, and all-round utility.

2) Davies-Allison -- (Mercedes--will run forever and retain value) A true classic; thorough. N. B. that the commentary was really written almost entirely by Allison, a master of Matthew, even if he is a bit too interested in source criticism for my taste. Since this is now available in paperback, it trades places with Luz.

3) Luz -- (Jaguar--complicated but beautiful and exciting in a traditional sort of way) Excellent...and priced accordingly. I think his emphasis on reception history is going to prove prophetic. The format is quite user-friendly, I think.

3) France -- (Toyota Camry) This refers to his Tyndale NTC; n.b. that he is writing the NICNT on Matthew, and has other books on Matthew, as well as I think commentary on Matthew in one volume commentaries. Good handling of many issues; good sensitivity; somewhat famous for his important treatment of Matthew 23-25. Different enough from Carson and Garland to avoid evangelical excess. Owning this and Carson would be a good "evangelical" start. Anyone doing a Bible study on Matthew could probably profit from a read through this book.

3) Carson -- (Fully loaded Ford F350, a real workhorse for traditional tasks) Apologetic and thorough, with a surprising (for 1984, and for a theological-exegetical scholar) sense of the allusive function of Matthew's use of the OT and other matters. The series editor gave Carson the task of absorbing synoptic issues and other matters, so this is the largest and (to my knowledge) the finest commentary in the EBC's NT. Unfortunately labeled "David A. Carson" in Allison's latest book.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Joe Cathey were doing this, would he assign the commentaries "guns" (Luz=bazooka, Gundry=laser plasma gun) instead of cars?

12:09 PM, January 16, 2006  

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