For over one hundred years, the International Critical Commentary series has held a special place among works on the Bible. It has sought to bring together all the relevant aids to exegesis—linguistic and textual no less than archaeological, historical, literary and theological—with a level of comprehension and quality of scholarship unmatched by any other series.
No attempt has been made to secure a uniform theological or critical approach to the biblical text: contributors have been invited for their scholarly distinction, not for their adherence to any one school of thought.
The depth of analysis found in the International Critical Commentary (ICC) Series has yet to be surpassed in any commentary collection. One of the best features of this series is the extensive amount of background information given in each volume's introduction, where all of the analysis is provided before the actual commentary begins. Each volume packs more information into the introduction than you will often find in the body of most commentaries! Also consider that with the electronic versions of each volume, you will never need to leaf through the hundreds of pages in each volume searching for the passage you are studying.
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“‘Form’ is an inadequate rendering of μορφὴ, but our language affords no better word. By ‘form’ is commonly understood ‘shape,’ ‘sensible appearance.’ So of Christ’s human form (Mk. 16:12). But the word in this sense cannot be applied to God. Μορφὴ here means that expression of being which is identified with the essential nature and character of God, and which reveals it. This expression of God cannot be conceived by us, though it may be conceived and apprehended by pure spiritual intelligences.” (Pages 57–58)
“The reason for the exhortation κατεργ. is that it is God’s own work which they have to do. It is God’s good pleasure which they are to fulfil, as did their great example, Jesus Christ; and it is God who, to that end, is energising their will and their working. (See 2 Cor. 5:18.) This is a serious task, to be performed in no self-reliant spirit, but with reverent caution and dependence on God.” (Page 66)
“but the inward peace of the soul which comes from God, and is grounded in God’s presence and promise.” (Page 135)
“‘to ponder or brood over.’ In N.T. usage it does not always involve the idea of worry or anxiety” (Page 134)
“May your love increase and abound in ripe knowledge and perceptive power, that you may apply the right tests and reach the right decisions in things which present moral differences.’” (Page 13)
Of the merits of the work it is enough to say that it is worthy of its place in the noble undertaking to which it belongs. It is full of just such information as the Bible student, lay or clerical, needs; and while giving an abundance of the truths of erudition to aid the critical student of the text, it abounds also in that more popular information which enables the attentive reader almost to put himself in St. Paul's place, to see with the eyes and feel with the heart of the Apostle to the Gentiles.
Throughout the work scholarly research is evident. It commends itself by its clear elucidation, its keen exegesis which marks the word study on every page, its compactness of statement and its simplicity of arrangement.
Marvin Richardson Vincent was a professor of New Testament exegesis and criticism at Union Theological Seminary. Vincent was the author of numerous books, including The Minister’s Handbook, Critical Commentary on Philippians and Philemon, History of Textual Criticism of the New Testament and In the Shadow of the Pyrenees.