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Romans (Teach the Text Commentary Series) Hardcover – January 15, 2013
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
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From the Back Cover
An essential commentary for pastors
The Teach the Text Commentary Series gives pastors the best of biblical scholarship and presents the information needed to move seamlessly from the meaning of the text to its effective communication. By keeping the discussion in each carefully selected preaching unit to six pages of focused commentary, the volumes allow pastors to quickly grasp the most important information. Each unit of the commentary includes the big idea and key themes of the passage; sections dedicated to understanding, teaching, and illustrating the text; and full-color illustrations, maps, and photos.
C. Marvin Pate's volume on the book of Romans will inform and inspire pastors to make Paul's vital message to the Christians in Rome both understandable in its context and applicable to our lives today.
About the Author
C. Marvin Pate (PhD, Marquette University) is chair of the department of Christian theology, Elma Cobb Professor of Christian Theology at Ouachita Baptist University, and pastor of DeGray Baptist Church. He's the author, coauthor, or editor of many books, including The Writings of John, The Story of Israel, and The End of the Age Has Come: The Theology of Paul.
Mark L. Strauss (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is professor of New Testament at Bethel Seminary San Diego. He is the author or editor of many books and articles, including How to Read the Bible in Changing Times, Four Portraits, and One Jesus: An Introduction to Jesus and the Gospels.
John H. Walton (PhD, Hebrew Union College) is professor of Old Testament at Wheaton College. He is the author or editor of numerous books, including A Survey of the Old Testament, Old Testament Today, Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament, and The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Top customer reviews
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I find that the book of Romans is an excellent introduction to this new commentary series. Romans has been called the "Gospel of God through Paul." Beautiful in its usage of Greek, deep in its level of insight, and packed with theological truths and historical importance, the 5-part framework used not only helps readers to appreciate the overall flow of Romans, it energizes readers when it sheds light on how Romans is understood and can be applied. Every page is filled with thoughtful planning. Every table and illustration is appropriately placed to enlarge understanding, or to highlight its relevance to the overall flow. For instance, the map printed on the same page as Paul's historical travels not only highlights the different eras of the Roman Empire, it gives readers an idea of the cultural and the religious challenges Paul had to face. There are also links to other biblical books to help readers relate the Old Testament to the New Testament. One example is the table that shows how some scholars have made a parallel of Romans covenant structure and format with the Deuteronomy Hittite-treaty, and how the old and the new covenants are compared and contrasted in Romans.
The way the passages are selected has less to do with numbers and more to do with the themes of the epistle. At several sections, the author even introduces an additional chapter to highlight important rituals, sacraments, and history that the reader can benefit from. Commentary texts are professionally matched with different colour fonts and tables. Diagrams and photos give the texts a living reality. Just as preachers and teachers often try to give hearers a memory device or a mneumonic framework for understanding, this book gives readers a powerful grasp of the text through brilliant colour, illustrations, and point-by-point explanation of the background of the ancient world, and the modern applications possible. Difficult terms are explained, and with the layperson in mind, the book also highlights words that may be unfamiliar to the audience. Words like "parousia," themes like covenant, comparison between the old Jewish and the new Christian thinking, contrasting the curses and the blessings, the chosen people, even the historical development of the Reformation movement!
If I must do a critique, I will say that the diagrams and the illustrations can become a little too distracting. Worse, if it keeps the preacher more on the commentary and less on the actual biblical text itself, it may very well do the earnest Bible reader a disfavour. That said, the responsibility must eventually fall on the reader. Bearing this in mind, I must say this commentary series has very high potential to be a preachers' handbook for preaching and for teaching. Some of the illustrations used may not be universally applicable, but the point is moot. The illustrations themselves are simply examples on how the author will apply it. The preachers and teachers themselves need to do their own homework. After all, while the scholarship and the heavy lifting has been done on the text background, preachers and teachers need to do their own heavy lifting, of contextualizing what they have read for their own congregations or hearers. I look forward to the other volumes of this Teach the Text Commentary Series. The one on Romans is so well done that I cannot wait for the rest to be published.
If you are looking to refresh your Church or organization's library of commentary for preaching, make sure you check out this series.
Rating: 5 stars of 5.
This book is provided to me free by Baker Books and NetGalley without any obligation for a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.
This volume on romans is one of their first to be published.
There are a number of reasons I like this commentary a few are:
-Chapters are short so that they are manageable for weekly preaching and teaching. I really like this.
-Every sub-chapter has the commentator begin by offering the “big idea” of the passage. This is a plus for busy preachers and will help them stay focused on the meaning of the text, not little rabbit trails or theology hobby horses which larger commentaries tend to cause.
-The first page of the sub-chapters offer historical and literary context on the passage. I’ve always said “Context is King” and this helps the teacher or preacher not forget that.
-One of the best additions to the commentary are the “Teaching the Text” suggestions. You get expert advice from the author on how to best communicate the true meaning of the passage. It is very conversational and informal, not academic. It is as if the author was thinking out loud.
-Finally there is the “Illustrating the Text” section. This is a short, but priceless, portion that offers a variety of ideas for how to help modern readers think about the implications and applications of the text through art, poetry, exercises, and discussions.
-The text is peppered with beautiful pictures and photographs that stimulate the imagination.
This commentary would be a refreshing resource for any pastor, teacher or Bible study leader.