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A Commentary on the Psalms, Volume 1 (Kregel Exegetical Library) Hardcover – February 9, 2012

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Product Details

  • Series: Kregel Exegetical Library
  • Hardcover: 896 pages
  • Publisher: Kregel Academic & Professional (February 9, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 082542562X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0825425622
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #173,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The Book of Psalms has been the people of God's richest resource for expressing worship and developing the spiritual life. It is also one of the more complex and challenging sections of the Bible to expound responsibly and meaningfully. Pastors, teachers, and all serious students of the Bible will find this commentary invaluable for developing their understanding of the Psalms and for improving their ability to expound it with precision and depth.

Allen P. Ross, Ph D, University of Cambridge, is professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School. He is the author of Creation and Blessing: A Guide to the Study and Exposition of Genesis and Holiness to the LORD: A Guide to the Exposition of the Book of Leviticus.

"Ross has given us the rich reflections of decades of research and teaching. But make no mistake. This is no sterile tome; it is a thorough, erudite exposition grounded in a deep faith for which students of the Psalms will be grateful for years to come."
M. Daniel Carroll R., Distinguished Professor of Old Testament, Denver Seminary

"Every generation or so a benchmark publication emerges that eclipses all works of the genre that have preceded it and sets the standard for all subsequent attempts. Ross has accomplished this in his massive three volume commentary on Psalms."
Eugene Merrill, Distinguished Professor of Old Testament, Dallas Theological Seminary

"Professor Ross's extensive and superb introduction alone is worth the purchase of the commentary."
C. Hassell Bullock, Franklin S. Dyrness Professor of Biblical Studies Emeritus, Wheaton College

"An invaluable tool for all those who seek to understand and expound the Book of Psalms. …[Ross] guides the expositor through each step of observation, analysis, interpretation, and application, which if followed are sure to enrich preaching and teaching of the Psalms."
John N. Oswalt, Visiting Distinguished Professor of Old Testament, Asbury Theological Seminary

"This commentary, which is the culmination of his years of research and reflection on the Psalter, exhibits the exegetical skill and theological insight that readers have come to expect from this outstanding scholar…It is the finest commentary on the Psalms available today."
Robert B. Chisholm, Jr., Chair and Professor of Old Testament Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

About the Author

Allen P. Ross (PhD, University of Cambridge) is professor of divinity at Beeson Divinity School. Prior to this, he taught at Trinity Episcopal School of Ministry and Dallas Theological Seminary. His publications include Creation and Blessing: A Guide to the Study and Exposition of Genesis, Holiness to the Lord: A Guide to the Exposition of the Book of Leviticus, and Introducing Biblical Hebrew.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Ross provides 180 pages of introduction to the book of Psalms, focusing on structure and theology.
R. Hayton
I will certainly be coming back to Ross' work to assist me in my study of the text as he gives well organized scholarly with pastoral insight on this great book.
Robert C. Castillo
I believe this to be the best work I have seen on the Psalms and would highly recommend it for students, teachers, and pastors.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Ryan Case on June 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For the content of this excellent commentary, see the other well-written reviews. But if you're a busy pastor looking for an excellent, all-round balanced commentary on the Psalms, this is IMHO by far the best commentary available.

In seminary, we used Ross' grammar for first & second year Hebrew; all this to say that he is indeed a top-notch Hebrew scholar (you can also see his excellent commentary on Genesis to confirm his profound understanding on parallelism, chiasms, etc.). However, he has a pastor's heart. The chapters are virtually sermons. I own Wilson's NIVAC commentary (vol. 1) on Psalms, and this is far more practical IMHO. Also, I own Goldingay's massive 3 volume commentary series on the Psalms. I prefer Ross; he just seems to use the Hebrew when it's needed, whereas Goldingay leaves me frustrated most of the time I reference him. This is meatier than Van Gemeren's, as there is much more room for him to explain prose, the Hebrew words, grammar, etc. Yet it's so unbelievably practical.

If I could rate this higher than 5 stars, I would. Preacher's you need this volume. I've been waiting for years for this to come out; this was worth the wait. Now I eagerly await further volumes. (Finally, Ross is a first rate biblical theological scholar as well [see his "recalling the hope of glory"]; basically, he understands the progressive 'big picture' of God's redemptive purposes as they unfold & culminate in fulfillment in the incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection & return of Jesus Christ). Soli Deo Gloria!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jason on May 1, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Ross's introductory section (180 pages!) covers some of the typical issues (date, authorship, provenance, etc.) encountered in most commentaries, but he doesn't devote whole sections to them. He instead intersperses discussion of these issues throughout the commentary itself as he finds them relevant. His attention then is paid to matters that are more particular to the psalter: abbreviations, the psalms' value, the text and versions of the psalms, and titles and headings. Reading through these chapters shows the reader the psalms' truly variegated nature. Following these chapters, Ross attends to other matters that are more broadly applicable, but important for understanding the psalms. These chapters cover the history of interpretation (which shows quite a diversity of approaches), biblical poetry (a notoriously untamable beast!), literary forms and functions in the psalms, theology of the psalms, and an exposition of the psalms. I won't deal with these sections except to say they are helpful in equipping the reader with the appropriate tools necessary to begin the interpretive process in the psalter.

The first psalm I chose to evaluate is arguably the most important in the entire collection--Psalm 1. It's place at the head of the psalter is not accidental and, as Ross argues, it along with Psalm 2 sets the theme for the whole psalter: the way the righteous are to live among the ungodly and the salvation the righteous have in their divinely chosen king (182). Psalm 1 is indeed concerned with the comparison of the righteous and the wicked and Ross ably works through the details so that the reader is clear on some of the important nuances in the descriptions. One aspect here I appreciate is his attention to the description of the ungodly (which plays out primarily in the footnotes).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ben Birdsong on May 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Psalms is a loved book of the scriptures, but it frequently causes confusion when it comes to the interpretation of the Hebrew figures of speech and the many textual difficulties that the Psalms present. Allen P. Ross' A Commentary on the Psalms: Volume 1 (1-41) is a very helpful resource for any student of the Bible seeking to dive deeper within the worship hymnal of the Old Testament.

Ross' approach to the text is very thoughtful. He is seeking to clearly allow the truth of the text to speak to today's reader. Unlike many commentaries, Ross' work is written on a level that those without formal theological training can interact with the text. However, he does not avoid the detailed exegesis of the text. The footnotes delve deep into the Hebrew of the psalms.

The most helpful portions of this commentary are the outlines of the psalms and the single sentence summaries of the central message of the psalm. In a church culture where the psalms are frequently neglected in the pulpit, Ross provides pastors with a helpful resource to begin approaching the beautiful passages that comprise the psalms. This is a very helpful and readable commentary that would be suitable for both the lay student of the Bible and the biblical scholar alike.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Luke Geraty on July 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Of the Psalms, John Calvin said that “the varied and resplendid riches which are contained in this treasury it is no easy matter to express in words.” Martin Luther stated that the Psalms are a “Little Bible, wherein everything contained in the entire Bible is beautifully and briefly comprehended.” Deitrich Bonhoeffer said that “the more deeply we grow into the psalms and the more often we pray them as our own, the more simple and rich will our prayer become” and “whenever the Psalter is abandoned, an incomparable treasure is lost to the Christian church. With its recovery will come unexpected power.”

Good commentaries on the Psalms are hard to find because authors either get bogged down with biblical criticism (form, source, redaction, etc.) or simply offer shallow surveys that offer little to students of the Bible. Allen P. Ross’ A Commentary on the Psalms: Volume 2 (42-89), a part of the Kregal Exegetical Library series, attempts to hold the middle ground by providing solid textual analysis while also providing interpreters with substance that can easily be taken into the pulpit, Bible study, or other expositional situations.

A Commentary on the Psalms is definitely more scholarly than many sets available today and certain sections were a bit dry. Pastors with little or no Hebrew training or with little interest in textual variants may struggle to find certain parts of Ross’ work as helpful as others. Yet Ross does a great job of integrating those textual concerns with solid exegetical and expository substance. In my mind, owning a copy would certainly be well received by Bible students who enjoy Hebrew and discussions concerning the text as well as the surrounding contextual (narrative) background to the Psalms. Those who may not have those tools can still gain from Ross’ work as most of those issues are addressed in footnotes (not endnotes, praise Jesus!).

All in all, Ross’ work is solid and could prove helpful for those studying the psalms.
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