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on November 6, 2013
Excellent! Just simply excellent! Get this volume of the ACCS on the first 11 chapters of the Book of Genesis and you will be simply amazed. It gives both the Hebrew MT reading in English AND the Septuagint reading in English for every verse! Why ACCS could not do the very same thing say for their 2 volumes on the Psalms is beyond me, but for Genesis 1-11 they did and did exceptionally well. I highly recommend all English-Speaking Orthodox Christians to get this volume and every volume of the ACCS that not only gives us the Septuagint readings in English, but also the patristic commentary on these Septuagint verse readings. This volume is truly exceptional. Axios!
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on July 12, 2010
The Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture is a unique commentary series. Scholars and computer technology comb the writings of ancient Christian writers on particular books of the Bible. It is considered to be an ecumenical project with general editor Thomas C. Oden. It is an attempt to bring awareness and understanding to Christians concerning ancient beliefs.

Scholars familiar with ancient Christian writings offer hand-selected portions of these texts. I recently received my review copy on Genesis I-II, free of charge, from InterVarsity Press. There are 204 pages as it covers Genesis 1-11:32. Besides the commentary there is an introduction to Genesis I-II, chronology, biographical sketches, and an appendix of all the Early Christian writings cited.

Basil the Great, commenting on 1:5b, and the days of Creation suggests that "after the creation of the sun, it is day when the air is illuminated by the sun shining on the hemisphere above the earth when the sun is hidden." Basil goes on to say, "Yet it was not at that time according to our solar motion."

Oden, et al suggests that Genesis 1:26-27 are the "most commented on by the Fathers." (pg. 27) Gregory of Nyssa, concerning "let us make man" says that "God deliberated about the best way to bring to life a creation worthy of honor." Chrysostom likewise says, "'let us make man' suggests deliberation, collaboration and conference..." (pg. 28) Clement of Alexandria, on "the image of God" says this "is his Word and an image of the Word is the true man, that is, the mind of man, who on this account is said to have been created "in the image" of God and "in his likeness," because through his understanding heart he is made like the divine Word or Reason (logos), and so rational (logikos).

This commentary set can be appreciated by the layperson and the careful academic alike. This volume states, "The early chapters of Genesis had arguable the greater influence of the development of Christian theology than did any other part of the Old Testament." (pg. xxxix) The first few chapters of Genesis cover such theological issues as Adam and Christ; Typology; Creation; Humanity in the Image of God and The Fall and Original Sin. Many problems and arguments today have been considered in the past. There is truly nothing new under the sun.
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on December 4, 2015
Kudos to the editors who compile these from dozens of ancient sources. The breadth of sources is amazing and the authors provide an introduction explaining the brief biography and context of the writer, if known. I have appreciated their work in both commentaries on The Gospel of Mark and now Genesis (a 2-volume work). Each passage is reprinted with a one-sentence summary of the major thought each of the ancient fathers had on the passage, and then the selected reprinting of their comments. We've been using The Gospel Project curriculum to walk through Genesis, and it incorporates quotes from this into its weekly lessons; it quotes pretty selectively.

It is interesting to read the thoughts from the writings and early sermons of early Christians, but early Christian thought was mostly/heavily allegorical through the 6th century. Augustine, Ambrose and Chrysostom are quoted probably the most heavily, Augustine more toward the beginning. Augustine's City of God is most known for his Genesis as allegory through a Christian lens, he finds more connections between Noah's Ark and Jesus than other commentators have dared. It's sometimes hard to dilineate between biblical theology and exegetical fallacy.

Ambrose, while a hero of biblical Christian orthodoxy, is also of the Alexandrian allegorical school. Ambrose claims that Benjamin is a type of the Apostle Paul, with the other brothers the other disciples. The 75 who go to Egypt represent the "number of forgiveness."

"Chrysostom preached 67 homilies on Genesis in the year 389, while he was a priest at Antioch, explaining the book verse by verse," as such he appears in about every section. Rather than an allegorical bent, Chrysostom is encouraging his congregation to imitate the morals of the characters in Genesis. Joseph, for example, sets an example to young believers to heed Paul's advice to Timothy not to let anyone look down on their youth. I learned from this work that Chrysostom baptised people naked, as a figure of returning to the innocence of Eden. (You don't hear that mentioned much these days.)

The book is interesting to see what early theology looked like. Augustine did not read much Greek, much less Hebrew, and most of the authors were unfamiliar with ancient Canaanite custom, writing from Gentile contexts. As such, the book is somewhat helpful in exegesis but not much. They have some good observations on the passage and where Christians living in the first few centuries can take inspiration from the faith of God's chosen people in Genesis.
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on June 17, 2015
i am enjoying the commentary of Genesis the first eleven chapter from the perspective of ancient great fathers, it is wonderful, i was looking for it so badly, now i have it and i recommend this to any Christian faithful whether laity or ordained priest...
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on June 6, 2012
This appears to be a promising series on Scriptural commentary. It is time the Holy Fathers of the undivided Christian Church be given a say in the understanding of Scripture. I would recommend readers of this series not to stop with the brief Patristic commentaries but read the full commentaries from the Holy Fathers, ie. the pillars like John Chrsysotom, Basil the Great, Gregory of Nyssa, John of Damascus, and Symeon the New Theologian.
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on June 26, 2014
I find the book excellent for Professors, students and any lay people who are interested in the Church Fathers' interpretation of the Creation in Genesis 1-11.
The book arrived exactly on the planned day.
Excellent book, excellent service!
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VINE VOICEon March 12, 2004
. . .to the Ancient Christian Commentary series.
I have commented on other volumes in this series, and have not been uncritical when I felt that criticism was necessary. With "Genesis 1-11", the editors made a positive effort to provide "Ancient Christian" thought on this most difficult portion of Scripture. In addition, the decision by the General Editor(s) to divide Genesis into two volumes, using chapters 11 and 12 as the dividing points made a great deal of sense.
All in all, recommended.
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on February 22, 2008
I loved this book, I can hardly wait until I can read it again. It is something that you can really study. The Church Fathers have done so much for us, and I thank God that they wrote so much of it down. I am also greatful to all the people that took the time to compile all this information in one place. I will be purchasing the remander of the volums of this series. Tell your friends and loved ones about these books and then make sure to put it on your birthday, Christmas, Anniversary or just for the heck of it list!
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on April 20, 2016
Excellent commentary. Book arrived on time as advertised.
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on March 11, 2016
A great resource for any who study God's word.
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