Sunday, January 17, 2010

Galatians - Coming Soon!

By this upcoming weekend I hope to have my first post up on Galatians. This will be a lengthy series that I hope you enjoy and profit from. We will probably go paragraph by paragraph dealing with whatever issues the text brings up. Each section will probably get multiple posts at differing levels dealing with different aspects of the text and our analysis. Some posts may be a little technical. Hopefully many will be deeply theological and practical. At any rate, here's an open invitation to you all to wrestle through this key Pauline epistle with me.


  1. I'll be interested to see what commentaries you like/use for Galatians. There are a few good ones, but nothing that stands out to me as excellent.

  2. I can tell you now what I'm using and the rationale (One or two of these may drop out part way through if I feel using one of them becomes unnecessary):

    To get a variety of current perspectives:

    Hays - because I love him

    McKnight - for a commentary that has application

    The Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture series and Luther's to get older viewpoints to hopefully safeguard a little bit from odd views.

    I'll probably consult other literature a little bit too (e.g., significant books on Paul and the Law) when appropriate.

    I'd like to include Bruce, Betz, and Stott but one has to draw the line somewhere.

    I agree there's no standout, but I think that there are good merits to each of those. I'm excited about DeSilva's and Moo's forthcoming Galatians commentaries. Hopefully we'll see them soon.

    This series will take a while so it'll be a while to my formal reviews come out, but I'm sure that I'll comment on various views held by each as the series develops so that you can get a feeling for what I think. Up front I expect to like Hays, Longenecker, and McKnight the most (in no particular order, just based off of the little bit I've read of each).

    What are your thoughts on what's out thus far? Do you have a favorite or are you lukewarm on the whole crop?

  3. Lukewarm is a good way to describe it. I suppose I'd say Longenecker is the best, but that's more by default. I own Bruce, but don't love it. It's worth consulting. I also have Witherington, which is good not great. Yeah, that's basically how I feel about all Galatians commentaries.

    I'd like to get my hands on Fee's new Galatians commentary. DeSilva's "Interpreting Galatians" is good, too; you should check that out. Dunn and Martyn are interesting, but Martyn is really idiosyncratic.

    I should admit that I took a class on Galatians a few years back, but I hardly remember much of what I learned. That's mainly because it was my first semester commuting from Boston and taking on a bigger ministry role, so I hadn't really learned how to balance all of that. It's too bad, my prof (Roy Ciampa) did his dissertation in Galatians. Oh, he also really loved Chrysostom's old commentary on Galatians. Okay, I'm done taking up your comment space.

  4. Out of all of them, I've spent the most time in Martyn's. He is idiosyncratic, but very interesting. He may be way out there on some issues and he definitely pushes his mirror reading way too far, but his way of looking at the text is so different that sometimes I think he picks up on things others miss (I think Jewett's Romans commentary is similar in this regard).

    I'm looking forward to the ACCS commentary because it picks out the best bits from Jerome, Chrysostom, Augustine, and others. It's the first time I've extensively used a commentary that's older than mid 70s so it'll be interesting.