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1 & 2 Samuel (NIV Application Commentary) Hardcover – February 3, 2003
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For instance, his application for I Samuel 4 deals largely with the idea of "holy war" or a Christian's stance on war. (Pacificism, etc...) While that is an interesting discussion, and somewhat pertinent to I Sam. 4, it's not an immediate application I would have drawn.
Fortunately if you understand the Original meaning the Samuels are usually very easy to draw applications from. This is a good commentary, and probably worth the price for the original meaning/ bridging context material, but for the most part you will do a better job working at application on your own.
I will say that the work is very readable, and would be useful to most laypeople.
1-2 Samuel is a lot of material to cover, but Arnold does a great job of "getting to the point" without excluding important details to help you get to his conclusions. This point alone makes it a great resource not only for the busy pastor, but also a Sunday School teacher or small group leader.
Due to the fact of their consistent providing of satisfaction with past purchases, I'll continue to pick up additional copies of the NIVAC to complete my library as the need arises and the budget allows!
As a pastor, I like to preach short sections at a time. In the case of a book like II Samuel, I like to do one story at a time (and any one chapter of I or II Samuel can contain 1-3 stories. This commentary is not helpful for a pastor who preaches this way, which is I think how most pastors like to do it.
NIV Application Commentaries have three sections in each chapter: a textual analysis, a section bridging the ancient to the modern, and then modern applications. Since it's called an Application Commentary, one would think that the Application should be the most important. However, in the sections I read, the author would often tackle several chapters at a time, write a textual analysis of each section, but then do a bulk bridging contexts, then a bulk modern application. This means that instead of getting a few pages of modern applications for each little episode in Absalom's rebellion, I'm getting just a few pages of application on the entire rebellion in chapters 14-20. And like I said, that's not helpful for the typical pastor who is just going to focus on what his congregation can learn from one "episode" at a time.
That said, the textual analysis is top notch and very impressive; but I bought the book for help with application (why I went with a supposed "Application Commentary").Read more ›
With respect to the exegetical consideration, I like what he has offered, but I think this work is best used in conjunction with two other book: The Expositor's bible Commentary and by Robert Gordon. In my office, these are my primary sources (all three). One other point; I would include the New English Translation (NET) with the multitude of notes.
Central Themes of 1&2 Samuel
Arnold understands the overall theme of 1&2 Samuel to center around two questions:
1) “What is the acceptable nature of the Israelite monarchy?”
2)”Who can serve suitably as king?”
The first question is primarily addressed in 1 Samuel 1-15, while the second question occupies the material in 1 Samuel 16 — 2 Samuel 24 (p. 32). I found the second question concerning who is suitable as king to be a very insightful way of understanding the contrast between the kingships of Saul and David.
Arnold notes three main theological themes in 1&2 Samuel. The first concerns the above question of who is suitable to be Israel’s king, or the messianic theme. Arnold states, “The concept of an ideal anointed one arises gradually and is sustained in the narrative” (p. 36). Another theme which grows out of the two main questions concerns the use and abuse of power. Arnold sees the messianic and power themes bound together by a third theme dealing with the nature of repentance.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I learned a great deal from using this commentary as a preaching aide. The best part about it for me was the historical view of the text... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Janice D.
All of the NIV Application Commentaries I have are an excellent source of relevant information as well as being spiritually uplifting!!Published 24 months ago by James A Stowe
The NIV Application Commentary (NIVAC) is a unique commentary that seeks to give the reader both the meaning of a passage of Scripture in its original context and a practical... Read morePublished on February 13, 2014 by Joey Parker
This book is an excellent read for the serious bible student. This book provide a commentary of the narrative as well as contemporary application.Published on October 22, 2013 by Tracy S
This is yet another part of a great series - excellent scholarship. Particularly useful is the bridge between the basic text and a modern hermeneutic of application.Published on October 19, 2013 by JoeC
Excellant commentary. Readable and the proper fit for all types of studies or for preaching. Would highly reccommend to all.Published on February 28, 2013 by Philip
I find the NIV Application Commentary layout very helpful, giving both the Original meaning and the Contemporary significance. Read morePublished on January 11, 2011 by Richard Peterson
This is really a very good material, for both seasoned and new Christian as it does gives you enough information to understand the past and relate it to the present and future life... Read morePublished on November 5, 2009 by Cornelius Urbino