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Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible (20 vols.)
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Pastors and leaders of the classical church—such as Augustine, Calvin, Luther, and Wesley—interpreted the Bible theologically, believing Scripture as a whole witnessed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Modern interpreters of the Bible questioned this premise. But in recent decades, a critical mass of theologians and biblical scholars has begun to reassert the priority of a theological reading of Scripture. The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible enlists leading theologians to read and interpret Scripture for the twenty-first century, just as the church fathers, the Reformers, and other Orthodox Christians did for their times and places.

The commentaries are designed to serve the church—through aid in preaching, teaching, study groups, and so forth—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of the Bible.

With Logos, every word is essentially a link! Scripture references are linked directly to the Bibles in your library—both the original language texts and English translations. Double-clicking any word automatically opens your lexicons to the relevant entry, making Latin words instantly accessible. With Logos, you can quickly move from the table of contents to your desired content, search entire volumes and collections by topic, title, or Scripture reference.

Key Features

  • Contains an in-depth introduction of each book of the Bible
  • Includes extensive bibliographical references and indexes
  • Offers theological analysis of scripture

Praise for the Print Edition

Preachers and teachers in particular, but thoughtful Christians more generally, have long lamented the slide of biblical scholarship into hyper-specialized critical studies of ancient texts in remote historical context. It is no wonder, therefore, that the Brazos Theological Commentary is being so warmly welcomed. The outstanding array of authors . . . are, at long last, reclaiming the Bible as the book of the living community of faith that is the church.

—Richard John Neuhaus, priest, Archdiocese of New York

The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible makes a most welcome contribution to the church, the academic world, and the general public at large. By enlisting a wide range of Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox theologians who differ on much, but who agree on the truth of the Nicene Creed, the series also represents ecumenical activity of the very best kind. It is always a daunting challenge to expound the church’s sacred book both simply and deeply, but this impressive line-up of authors is very well situated for the attempt.

Mark A. Noll, Francis A. McAnaney Professor of History, University of Notre Dame

Contemporary application of the Bible to life is the preacher’s business. But no worthy contemporary application is possible without a thorough understanding of the ancient text. The Brazos Theological Commentary exists to provide an accessible authority so that the preacher’s application will be a ready bandage for all the hurts of life. We who serve the pulpit want a commentary we can understand, and those who hear us expect us to give them a usable word. The Brazos Commentary offers just the right level of light to make illuminating the word the joy it was meant to be.

Calvin Miller, emeritus professor of preaching and pastoral ministry, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University

Product Details


  • Author: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Pages: 304

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In this volume, R. R. Reno begins with the theological presupposition that Genesis is, at its core, a book that keeps pushing, moving, and looking forward. As Reno states, “As a book of origins Genesis is far less concerned with the source of what is than what will be.” Obviously this means that Reno is interpreting the text, and as such he does not allow Genesis to stand on its “own terms.” He uses it to develop a coherent theological expression. To this end, Reno’s methodology obviously takes center stage, but even here Reno will not allow himself to be sucked into a hermeneutical vacuum. His task is rather to respond and expound upon the important questions raised by the text at specific strategic and theologically significant points.

Thus, Reno’s approach is to highlight what is theologically significant in the book. He also aims to work back to the text in Genesis, locating its role in how Genesis pushes its narrative forward, exposing a forceful longing and need for redemption.

The result of Reno’s work is an incredibly fresh perspective on Genesis that is faithful both to the text, the surrounding context of the book, and to church theological tradition. Often the church because of its focus on particular items in Genesis has missed the theological power that lies buried within its story, and this book is a significant step forward in overcoming this problem.

Reno’s commentary on Genesis stands out by providing a purely theological approach to the Scriptures. . . . A great commentary for those who seek to be exposed to a wide diversity of theological views that have been put forth regarding the book of Genesis.

—Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

Rusty Reno has done what Augustine could not—write a theologically satisfying single-volume commentary on the whole of Genesis. Of course, Augustine didn’t have the benefit of reading Genesis through Rashi, Aquinas, Barth, Ochs, and even modern historical critics. This is the right way to read scripture—as a multigenerational exegetical workshop among Christians, Jews, and interested others, not looking for more or less reliable historical information or literary pre-history but for the sort of wisdom that instills love and finally holiness.

Jason Byassee, director, Center for Theology, Duke University

R. R. Reno (PhD, Yale University) is professor of theological ethics at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. He is the coauthor of Heroism and the Christian Life and serves as the features editor for First Things.


  • Author: Ephraim Radner
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 320

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In this commentary, Radner offers an interesting perspective on Leviticus. Though on the surface Leviticus is a book of laws concerning sacrifices, worship, the priesthood, and many other subjects, at the heart of the book is the underlying message that God is holy and requires his children to be holy. In our quest for holiness, we know that we will constantly fall short of God’s requirements. There is hope, as God reorients his people to himself in a fallen world. Radner parallels the animal sacrifice for sin, with the death of Jesus as the ultimate sacrifice to reconcile humans to God. Though it’s an Old Testament book, Leviticus, in Radner’s point of view, has many Christological connections that can be found.

Radner’s commentary is full of stimulating insights from which biblical scholars will benefit. . . . [It] makes a valuable contribution to the Christian study of Leviticus.

—Review of Biblical Literature

Preachers will . . . find considerable assistance and rich theological material in Leviticus. . . . [Radner] is well known as a theologian. With this volume, he makes a serious contribution to biblical scholarship as well.


Ephraim Radner (PhD, Yale University) is professor of historical theology at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto, and is the author of The End of the Church.


  • Author: David L. Stubbs
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 272

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Numbers begins with the joyful occasion of Israel accepting the covenant at Mount Sinai and preparing to begin their journey to the promise land. But grumbling soon sets in, and the people of Israel begin a slow trajectory towards rebellion and complaining, and yet constantly encounter God’s grace—even when he disciplines them.

David Stubbs in the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible: Numbers seeks to illuminate this theme as it’s presented throughout the book. He understands, as the entire series does, Numbers is Christian Scripture, and as such seeks to illuminate the meaning of the final (canonical) form of the text. Insightful, and theologically grounded in the tradition of the Nicene Creed, this commentary doesn’t simply explain, it interprets and explains the theology of this much under-studied book of the Bible.

Stubbs is an able guide as he focuses on the literary shape of the final form of Numbers and its theological implications for the life of the Christian church. . . . Rich and substantive. . . . A sumptuous theological feast.

Dennis Olson, Charles T. Haley Professor of Old Testament Theology, Princeton Theological Seminary

Stubbs’s sophisticated literary approach is just what is needed to engage the interplay of law and narrative in this, the most complex book of the Torah. Moreover, his wide-ranging theological and ecclesial imagination is deeply informed by Scripture and the history of its interpretation by both Jews and Christians. Stubbs has opened up the riches of a book that was effectively closed to the church, making it accessible and even indispensable for our journey with God.

Ellen F. Davis, Amos Ragan Kearns Professor of Bible and Practical Theology, Duke Divinity School

David L. Stubbs (PhD, Duke University) is associate professor of ethics and theology at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan, and has worked in college ministries and worship leadership for many years. He is also part of a task force on sacramental practice in the Presbyterian Church.


  • Author: Telford Work
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 336

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Explore the theological significance of Deuteronomy and interpret it for the 21st century. Work reasserts the priority of believing Scripture as a whole to be a witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ, just as the leaders of the classical church—Augustine, Calvin, and Luther—once did. Telford Work’s winsome theological exegesis of Deuteronomy will be of use to professors and students in Old Testament, Deuteronomy, Pentateuch, and theological interpretation courses as well as pastors and lay readers.

[Work’s] desire to recover [Deuteronomy] for the church is commendable. . . . This commentary will force readers to remember it is not enough to leave this wonderful revelation in its historical context.

—Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

This commentary will prove helpful to those who come to grips with the Bible professionally as preachers and teachers. . . . There are helpful topical and Scripture indexes included.

Richard D. Nelson, W. J. A. Power Professor of Biblical Hebrew and Old Testament Interpretation, Perkins School of Theology

Telford Work (PhD, Duke University) is associate professor of theology at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, and the author of several books. He serves as associate editor for Pro Ecclesia and has written articles for numerous publications, including Christianity Today, Books & Culture, and Theology Today.

1 Samuel

  • Author: Francesca Aran Murphy
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Pages: 320

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In this commentary, Francesca Murphy offers a theological exegesis of 1 Samuel. Her entertaining commentary makes the complicated narrative and theology of 1 Samuel more understandable. With the use of theological findings from theologians and ancient texts throughout the centuries, the richness text opens our eyes to the deeper spiritual lessons in this history book.

Murphy is at her perceptive and witty best in 1 Samuel. Her truly remarkable breadth of reading, awareness of the ambiguity of both power and vision, love of Scripture, and sense of what the church is about today make this a powerful and relevant contribution.

Iain Torrance, president, Princeton Theological Seminary

[Francesca Murphy] pays fastidious attention to the theological readings passed down to us throughout the centuries, from Origen to von Balthasar. She does not discard the modern hermeneutic; rather, she uses it in the service of doing faithful theology for our time.

David Fitch, B. R. Lindner Chair of Evangelical Theology, Northern Seminary

Francesca Aran Murphy (PhD, King’s College, London) is professor of systematic theology at the University of Notre Dame and the author of several books, including Christ the Form of Beauty. She previously taught at the School of Divinity, History, and Philosophy at the University of Aberdeen.

2 Samuel

  • Author: Robert Barron
  • Publisher:Brazos Press
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Pages: 240

The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible encourages readers to explore how the vital roots of the ancient Christian tradition should inform and shape faithfulness today. In this addition to the series, highly acclaimed author, speaker, and theologian Robert Barron offers a theological exegesis of 2 Samuel. He highlights three major themes: God’s non-competitive transcendence, the play between divine and non-divine causality, and the role of Old Testament kingship.

Robert Barron is a great teacher of the Church and a gifted biblical commentator who breaks open the Word of God for our day as Ambrose and Augustine did for theirs.

—George Weigel, distinguished senior fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center

Even the challenging parts of David’s life are handled in fresh, creative, and—most important—productive ways.

Gary Anderson, Hesburgh Professor of Catholic Theology, University of Notre Dame

In this impressive example of theological exegesis, Robert Barron shows that he is both an outstanding theologian and a masterful interpreter of scripture.

—Brant Pitre, chair of Sacred Scripture, Notre Dame Seminary

Barron has written a beautiful commentary on 2 Samuel. It is a pleasure to read. Even serious readers of the Bible will delight in the surprising things he discerns in the narrative.

—Robert Louis Wilken, distinguished fellow of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology and William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of the History of Christianity, University of Virginia

Bishop Robert Barron is an auxillary bishop for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Formerly a priest in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago and rector/president of Mundelein Seminary at the University of St. Mary of the Lake, he is the author of Bridging the Great Divide: Musings of a Post-Liberal, Post-Conservative, Evangelical Catholic, The Strangest Way: Walking the Christian Path, Exploring Catholic Theology: Essays on God, Liturgy, and Evangelization, and The Priority of Christ: Toward a Postliberal Catholicism.

1 & 2 Kings

  • Author: Peter J. Leithart
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Pages: 304

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Leading theologian, Peter J. Leithart, interprets 1 & 2 Kings for today’s church in this commentary. Leithart offers an accessible, thorough treatment of the ancient text and provides practical applications to aid in the teaching and preaching of the Word.

Leithart does an eminently satisfying work of exposition. . . . The two disciplines of biblical and theological studies can only benefit from cross-disciplinary engagement and, certainly, Leithart demonstrates that both disciplines can be used critically and in service of the Church.

—Toronto Journal of Theology

Leithart will certainly provide you with food for thought. . . . You will encounter useful ideas to provoke you in your sermon prep. This intriguing new series will incorporate contributions from a broad spectrum of theological traditions. You will want to keep your eye on the Brazos commentaries.

Semper Reformanda

Peter J. Leithart (PhD, University of Cambridge) is senior fellow of theology at New Saint Andrews College and serves as the organizing pastor of Trinity Reformed Church in Moscow, Idaho. He is the author of numerous books and is also a contributing editor for Touchstone.

Ezra & Nehemiah

  • Author: Matthew Levering
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2007
  • Pages: 256

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Illuminating the theological character of these prophetic books, Matthew Levering provides a detailed examination within the context of a holy land and people. Highlighting God’s covenantal gifts of purity, he discusses the leaders’ efforts to renew and reform Israel, and how these labors have become part of the church’s own story.

. . . Levering provides extensive information that throws light on what might otherwise be unfamiliar information.

Dianne Bergant, professor of Old Testament studies, Catholic Theological Union

This is a good addition to other commentaries helping preachers take the step from close examination of the text to seeing how each portion of this story fits in the whole flow of redemption. . . . [It] points the way to thinking more theologically in these books.

Ray Van Neste, assistant professor, Nihon University

Matthew Levering (PhD, Boston College) is professor of theology at the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio. He is coauthor of Holy People, Holy Land and Knowing the Love of Christ.

Esther & Daniel

  • Authors: Samuel Wells and George Sumner
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Pages: 256

The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible advances the assumption that the Nicene creedal tradition, in all its diversity, provides the proper basis for the interpretation of the Bible. This series, written by leading theologians, encourages readers to extend the vital roots of the ancient Christian tradition to our day. This addition offers a theological exegesis of Esther and Daniel.

A fascinating conversation between two books that capture opposite aspects of the life of faith emerges in this volume of the Brazos Theological Commentary. In Esther, God seems to disappear from history, leaving the faithful to their own desperate devices. And in Daniel, we read about God breaking into the chaos of history. Imaginatively and convincingly, Wells and Sumner show the theological, ethical, and even missional importance of these ‘outlier’ books within the Christian canon. Powerfully written, this book is designed to stimulate serious conversation in the church.

Ellen F. Davis, Amos Ragan Kearns Distinguished Professor of Bible and Practical Theology, Duke Divinity School

This volume in the Brazos Theological Commentary series shows two keen theological imaginations interacting with two challenging books of the Bible. Wells and Sumner offer readings of Esther and Daniel that display their insights as careful, thoughtful readers, while also revealing their roles as contemporary tradents passing on insights from their historic predecessors to their contemporary community. Preachers, students, and scholars who care about the possibility of responsible theological interpretation—especially with regard to the relation of Jewish and Christian readings of biblical books—will find much of great value here.

A. K. M. Adam, assistant professor of New Testament, Princeton Theological Seminary

Samuel Wells is vicar of St. Martin-in-the-Fields Anglican Church in Trafalgar Square, London. He earned a PhD from the University of Durham and served as dean of the chapel and research professor of Christian ethics at Duke University. Wells is the author of Be Not Afraid, Improvisation: The Drama of Christian Ethics, and Transforming Fate into Destiny: The Theological Ethics of Stanley Hauerwas. He coedited, with Stanley Hauerwas, The Blackwell Companion to Christian Ethics.

George Sumner received a PhD from Yale University. He is principal and Helliwell Professor of World Mission at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto. He has served in various pastoral roles and is an honorary assistant at St. Paul’s Anglican Church, Toronto.

Proverbs & Ecclesiastes

  • Author: Daniel J. Treier
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Pages: 288

Based on a theological reading of Scripture, Treier’s commentary on Proverbs and Ecclesiastes compares and contrasts these very different books and examines their connection to each other—and to the whole canon. He discusses their textual ethos and clarity of logos; and interprets them as words from God, about God, and within the one Word of God.

Treier’s new commentary is a rare gift: rich theological reflection and wisdom from and on Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. It fills a serious gap in much Christian thought and practice.

Raymond C. Van Leeuwen, professor of biblical studies, Eastern University

Daniel J. Treier (PhD, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) is associate professor of theology at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois. He is the author of Introducing Theological Interpretation of Scripture and the coeditor of several books, including The Cambridge Companion to Evangelical Theology and the award-winning Dictionary for Theological Interpretation of the Bible.

Song of Songs

  • Author: Paul J. Griffiths
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Pages: 240

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The addition of Song of Songs to the well-received Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible is a very welcome event given the uniqueness of the biblical book and this commentary series. Catholic Scholar Paul Griffiths offers theological exegesis of the Song of Songs revealing a powerful message of human erotic desire and God’s profound love for his people.

A wonderful commentary on the New Vulgate text of the Song of Songs. Readers will benefit from Griffiths’s introduction defending the value of the study of translations, his close study of the translation he has chosen, and his theological interpretations of Christ and the church.

Richard S. Hess, Earl S. Kalland Professor of Old Testament and Semitic Languages, Denver Seminary

Paul J. Griffiths (PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison) is Warren Professor of Catholic Theology at Duke University Divinity School in Durham, North Carolina. He is the author or coauthor of many books, including Intellectual Appetite, Reason and the Reasons of Faith, and An Apology for Apologetics: A Study in the Logic of Interreligious Dialogue.


  • Author: Robert W. Jenson
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 384

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Esteemed theologian Robert W. Jenson presents a theological exegesis of Ezekiel. Relying on ideas drawn from Origen, Pope Gregory the Great, premodern Jewish exegetes, and ancient texts, Jenson is able to present a critical investigation of the texts and events of Ezekiel.

Jenson brings to the interpretation of Ezekiel years of theological study, a deeply Trinitarian vision, and an ability to read the Bible as Christian scripture.

—Gilbert Meilaender, professor of theology, Valparaiso University

Here is a faithful Christocentric reading of Ezekiel that sits happily alongside this Jewish reader’s cherished volume of Moshe Greenberg’s commentary on Ezekiel. Jenson’s Christocentric reading is also a deep reading of this text, drawing up dimensions of form and force and meaning that will also serve the rabbinic reader: not because of any leveling or syncretism, but because, once drawn up, these dimensions may then be drawn forward in their different ways by the differing communities of rabbinic and Christian readers.

—Peter Ochs, Edgar M. Bronfman Professor of Modern Judaic Studies, University of Virginia

Robert W. Jenson (DrTheol, University of Heidelberg) is former senior scholar for research at the Center of Theological Inquiry. He is the author of On Thinking the Human: Resolutions of Difficult Notions and coeditor (with Carl Braaten) of Christian Dogmatics. Jenson lives in Princeton, New Jersey.


  • Author: Phillip Cary
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 192

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In this lucid and vividly written commentary on the book of Jonah, Phillip Cary offers a typological reading in which Jonah represents Israel as a blessing to the nations even in its disobedience, exile, and suffering. Christians receive this blessing precisely by identifying with Jonah/Israel through faith in Jesus, Israel’s Messiah. Readers interested in Jewish-Christian relations will value this addition to the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible, as one of its primary themes is the relationship between Jew and Gentile.

This volume, like each in the series, is designed to serve the church—through aid in preaching, teaching, study groups, and so forth—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of the Bible.

Cary writes with an energy and clarity rarely found in biblical commentaries of any type. . . . This volume will both edify and repay repeated reading.

Stephen Fowl, Department of Theology, Loyola College

Cary’s concern to combat anti-Semitism in Christian readings of Jonah, and his discussions of important theological concepts related to the book, make this work beneficial for Christian pastors and laity.

Brad E. Kelle, assistant professor of biblical literature, Point Loma Nazarene University

Phillip Cary (PhD, Yale University) is professor of philosophy at Eastern University in Pennsylvania as well as scholar-in-residence at the Templeton Honors College. He is the author of three critically acclaimed books on the life and thought of Augustine.


  • Author: Stanley Hauerwas
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Pages: 272

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Stanley Hauerwas’ commentary on Matthew is not your typical commentary. Though most commentators approach a book for its theological aspects, Hauerwas’ Matthew focuses on the “how-to” of becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ. With the use of current Matthean scholarship and the wisdom of various scholars and theologians, including Augustine, Barth, and Bonhoeffer, Hauerwas is able to address relevant topics like homosexuality, politics, and abortion—not normally discussed in other commentaries on Matthew.

A fresh perspective on Matthew that is aberrantly insightful, colorful, compelling, and powerful. Well-written, fast-paced, and accessible to laity, Hauerwas delivers thoughtful and thought-provoking conversation between Matthew’s gospel and American culture.

Princeton Theological Review

What’s nice to see is that the individual commentators have been allowed to retain their own voices in this series; Hauerwas is as delightfully irascible and hard-hitting as ever. . . . Insightful and provocative, Hauerwas adds a valuable theological perspective to the Gospel of Matthew.

Publishers Weekly

Stanley Hauerwas (PhD, Yale University) is Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. He is the author of numerous books, including A Cross-Shattered Christ, The Peaceable Kingdom, and With the Grain of the Universe.


  • Author: David Lyle Jeffrey
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 336

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In this addition to the Brazos Theological Commentary series, highly-acclaimed professor of literature David Lyle Jeffrey offers a theological reading of Luke. This commentary, like each in the series, is designed to serve the church—providing a rich resource for preachers, teachers, students, and study groups—and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of a theological interpretation of the Bible.

With its exciting, theologically vibrant range of reference across 20 centuries of interpretation, this is a terrific contribution . . . Jeffrey brings the evangelist to life for us on a brilliant exegetical and theological tour of attentive Gospel interpretation down the ages.

Markus Bockmuehl, professor, Keble College, University of Oxford

If there are any lingering doubts about the wisdom of Brazos Press publishing a series of theological commentaries on the books of the Bible, David Lyle Jeffrey’s commentary on Luke will lay those doubts to rest. Jeffrey is at home in modern critical literature, he knows the church fathers and medieval interpreters, and he makes good use of the Reformers, most notably Calvin. He brightens the discussion with literary allusions and poems. He draws illuminating parallels from unexpected places in the scriptures. But what makes this commentary a delight to read is that Jeffrey is a close reader of the Gospel of Luke and on every page displays a serious effort to understand the sacred text in light of the church’s faith. A superb addition to the series.

—Robert Louis Wilken, William R. Kenan Jr. Professor Emeritus, University of Virginia

David Lyle Jeffrey is distinguished professor of literature and humanities at Baylor University, and professor emeritus of English literature at the University of Ottawa. He earned his PhD from Princeton University, and is the author of A Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature and People of the Book.


  • Author: Jaroslav Pelikan
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2005
  • Pages: 320

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Jaroslav Pelikan, one of the most well-respected scholars in the history of Christianity, brings you an insightful and well-articulated commentary on Acts. This distinctly theological commentary focuses more on the themes and dogmas of Acts, rather than the text itself.

This remarkable project is especially lucky in its inaugural volume on Acts of the Apostles by the noted historian of dogma, Jaroslav Pelikan. If the rest of the commentators live up to the high standard set by Pelikan . . . the series could end up marking a turning point in the history of biblical hermeneutics.

First Things

[Acts] has all the marks of Pelikan’s scholarship: a close reading of the Greek text; a verse-by-verse commentary on that text studded with references to the great patristic commentators; and a constant eye on the theological and homiletical possibilities of the text itself, as well as its place in the liturgical life of the church both West and East.

Lawrence S. Cunningham, John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology, University of Notre Dame

Jaroslav Pelikan (PhD, University of Chicago) was Sterling Professor Emeritus of History at Yale University, where he served on the faculty from 1962–1996. His universally acclaimed works include the five-volume The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine and Jesus through the Centuries: His Place in the History of Culture.


  • Author: Christopher R. Seitz
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2014
  • Pages: 240

In this addition to the acclaimed series, renowned scholar Christopher Seitz offers a theological exegesis of Colossians, bringing his expertise in canonical reading to bear on his interpretation of this Pauline letter. As with other volumes in the series, the book is ideal for those called to ministry.

[Seitz’s] theological interests shine brightly. . . . Seitz offers a wealth of canonical and theological commentary on the text of Colossians. . . . By and large, readers will be enriched both theologically and historically. . . . Seitz’s commentary, while paying due attention to the history and importance of theological interpretation as represented in the Nicene tradition, seems to prioritize the scriptural text. Well done!

Books & Culture

Christopher R. Seitz is senior research professor of biblical interpretation at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto, and is an ordained Episcopal priest. He previously taught at the University of St. Andrews and Yale University. He has a PhD from Yale University. He is the author or editor of numerous books, including The Character of Christian Scripture, Prophecy and Hermeneutics, The Goodly Fellowship of the Prophets, and Nicene Christianity.

1 & 2 Peter

  • Author: Douglas Harink
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 224

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In this volume theologian Douglas Harink looks at 1 & 2 Peter through the theological lens of Christians living in empire. In 1 Peter, he believes there is a rich theology waiting to be taken from the world of Peter’s readers and brought thoughtfully in our own.

In 2 Peter Harink traces a radically different trajectory as he examines the theological emphases found in the second book that to most modern Protestants are quite foreign. Thus, we find not only challenging theological categories, but also clear challenges to the dominant theological concepts that rule our interpretation of the faith. Indeed, Ernst Kasemann found them so problematic that he called it “perhaps the most dubious writing in the canon.” Needless to say, all readers are going to find the commentary challenging not in the ways we live, but in the categorical assumptions we make.

An outstanding, illuminating, impressive example of a commentary written in the canonical mode. This commentary displays instructive subtlety and scope in braiding scriptural, patristic, Reformation, modern, and postmodern wisdom together with the texts of 1 and 2 Peter.

A. K. M. Adam, lecturer in New Testament, University of Glasgow

This is an example of theological interpretation of Scripture at its best. Harink combines close attention to the text with thoughtful theological reflection. He is aware of various historical-critical issues but does not allow them to distract from the theological concerns he brings to these letters. Moreover, his generous engagement with a variety of theological traditions invites all Christians to look at these oft-neglected epistles afresh.

Stephen E. Fowl, professor of theology, Loyola College

Douglas Harink (PhD, University of St. Michael’s College, Toronto School of Theology) is professor of theology at The King’s University College in Edmonton, Alberta. He is a member of the Center of Theological Inquiry and the author of Paul among the Postliberals.

The Pastoral Epistles with Philemon & Jude

  • Author: Risto Saarinen
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 288

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This volume offers a new interpretation of the theology and the narrative context of 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon, and Jude. Risto Saarinen makes three unique claims: 1) the Pastoral Epistles need to be understood in terms of character formation and diagnostic language, 2) the treatment of gifts and giving is a prominent feature of the epistles, and 3) a theological exegesis of these books results in a new view regarding the nature of doctrine. This stimulating study is articulate, both its exegesis and systematic theology.

Saarinen’s commentary does an excellent job of mediating the insights of recent large-scale works in a readable exposition that concentrates on theology. This is a stimulating study that helpfully and sympathetically challenges some traditionalist approaches.

I. Howard Marshall, emeritus professor of New Testament exegesis, University of Aberdeen

Risto Saarinen (DrTheol, DrPhil, University of Helsinki) is professor of ecumenical theology at the University of Helsinki in Helsinki, Finland, and an honorary professor at the University of Aarhus. He is also an ordained pastor of the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church and an editorial board member for Dialog: A Journal of Theology and Pro Ecclesia.


  • Author: Joseph L. Mangina
  • Editor: R. R. Reno
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Pages: 288

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

In Revelation Joseph Mangina offers a constructive ecclesiology for the role and mission of the church in the twenty-first century formed by a close examination of Revelation. Examining the necessary cultural, theological and exegetical issues, Mangina makes a compelling case that Revelation is a book that speaks profoundly to the church’s mission in the twenty-first century, and that it would do well to reexamine this cryptic and troubling book.

Mangina has produced a fine, rich commentary, one that not only instructs us about the Apocalypse but also urges us to listen to this vision as never before.

Beverly Roberts Gaventa, distinguished professor of New Testament interpretation, Baylor University

This well-written, literate, and illuminating commentary on a classically obscure text is at once theologically astute and ecclesiastically up-building—a rare combination indeed. I gladly commend it to scholars and teachers, preachers and laypeople alike.

—Travis Kroeker, professor of religion, McMaster University

Joseph L. Mangina (PhD, Yale University) is associate professor of systematic theology at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto. He is the editor of Pro Ecclesia, serves on the Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue commission for Canada, and is the author of two books on the thought of Karl Barth.