Thomas C. Oden provides a modern commentary on the pastoral letters grounded in the classical, consensual tradition of interpretation. He depends on the writers Athanasius, John Chrysostom, Augustine, Jerome, Luther, Calvin, Henry, and Wesley. His underlying conviction is that these classical Christian exegetes are better interpreters of the pastorals, not simply because they were earlier but because they were more attentive to a received tradition of consensual exegesis and less distracted by speculative theories.
Oden utilizes the best, most accurate research concerning the historical, literary, and philological aspects of the pastoral letters. He addresses tough issues: the role of women in worship, problems of rich and poor, the relationship between servants and masters, policies concerning support of elderly widows, and how to handle church disruptions.
The book is organized in a systematic sequence, making the letters more accessible and useful for thematic preaching. It features otherwise unavailable information and insight on the events and thoughts of the apostle Paul at the close of his life.
The Interpretation series from Westminster John Knox Press is clearly established as a rich source for teaching and preaching. They have tapped the talents of a varied and esteemed group of contributors, resulting in what is clearly the essential comprehensive commentary series on the Bible.
—W. Eugene March, A.B. Rhodes Professor of Old Testament Emeritus at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
The Interpretation series is an invaluable resource for any leader or scholar interested in interpreting the biblical text to the broader church. Its works are essential for pastors, educators, and church libraries.
—Brian K. Blount, President and Professor of New Testament at Union Theological Seminary
Thomas C. Oden is the Henry Anson Buttz Professor of Theology and Ethics at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey.