Claus Westermann’s 3-volume commentary on Genesis stands as one of the most exhaustive treatments of the first book of the Bible available today. The first volume of Westermann’s commentary introduces readers to the first eleven chapters of Genesis. For each section of Scripture, Westermann translates the text, introduces the literary form and the setting in life, offers a detailed commentary, shows readers the purpose and thrust, and offers a detailed analysis of secondary literature—all with thoroughness, clarity, and fairness.
Westermann’s commentary has the merit of taking a definite stand in the hermeneutical debate. In the tradition of Gunkel, it takes full advantage of the methods of form criticism and of the phenomenological study of religion. Again and again Westermann opens up dimensions of meaning which are not only relevant for theology but for human existence in the modern world.
—Bernhard W. Anderson, Journal of Biblical Literature