Skip to main content

BIBL - RLGN 3000: Home

Best Bets

Book Search

   

 

It is usually easiest to read eBooks online, a chapter at a time.  If you want to download an entire eBook, it is doable but can be a bit complicated.  Here are instructions. https://libguides.anderson.edu/ebooks/download

Find Periodicals by Title

Looking for a specific Journal, Magazine, or Newspaper?
Search here to see if we carry it at AU Nicholson Library (in print or electronically).

   

   

   

Tips

* Questions? Just ask a Librarian: http://library.anderson.edu/help/ask

* Need something from another Library, or sent to a remote location?Interlibrary Loan: http://illiad.anderson.edu/

 

Assignment

For

  • Ancient Christian Interpreters
  • Reformation and Early Modern Interpreters
  • Modern (and perhaps Post-Modern) Interpreters

Gather information about your selected text, answering the following questions/prompts:

(1) What did writers interpret the text to mean, i. e. what did they write about it?

(2) Identify with a brief biographical sketch (a 4-5 sentence paragraph) each interpreter whose work will appear in your rough draft.

(3) Explain or otherwise describe the methods used by the writers to interpret the text. You must cite a minimum of three interpreters and their work.

Ancient Christian writings on Scripture for dummies

Find your passage in Ancient Christian commentary (Ref. BS491.2 .A52)

Look for the names of Ancient Christian writers, which are quoted in Ancient Christian commentary for that passage

  • The Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture [Volumes on the individual books (or sub-sections of books) of the Bible are in the Reference Collection]

Find the full-text in print or online for some of those ancient Christian writers, and read

  • searches like au:Chrysostom and su:Bible John
  • searches like su:Bible Galatians early church interpretation
  • searches like su:Bible Ezekiel church fathers
  • Ante-Nicene Fathers [Reference Collection]
  • Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers [Reference Collection]
  • Ancient Christian texts [Reference Collection]
  • Other sources, such as the series titled “Ancient Christian Writers” may be found in the general stacks in Nicholson Library.

Write down "(1) What did writers interpret the text to mean, i. e. what did they write about it?"  Look for differences.

For the "(2)  ... brief biographical sketch{es] (a 4-5 sentence paragraph)" in information from from dictionaries of Christianity

For the "(3) Explain or otherwise describe the methods used by the writers to interpret the text."  mostly express your own analysis.  Perhaps help from, introductions to the book

McKim, Donald K. 2007. Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.
BS501 .A1 H57 2007
McKim, Donald K. 1998. Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.
BS501 .A1 H57 1998
Kannengiesser, Charles. 2004. Handbook of Patristic Exegesis : The Bible in Ancient Christianity. The Bible in ancient Christianity, v. 1-2; Bible in ancient Christianity, v. 1-2. Leiden: Brill.
BR65 .K34 2004
or other books (searches like Chrysostom  Bible John)
 
Here are call numbers for some of the series of ancient Christian writers in the Nicholson Library reference collection:

Ancient Christian commentary on Scripture. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press. Ref. BS491.2 .A52

Ante-Nicene Fathers : The Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers.  Ref. BR60 .A52 1994 Reprint, first published 1885-1896. 

Schaff, Philip. Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers. First Series /. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers. Ref. BR60 .S4 1994  Reprint, first published 1886-1890.

Schaff, Philip, and Henry Wace. 1994. Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers. Second Series. Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson Publishers. Ref. BR60 .S44 1994  Reprint, first published 1890.

The Fathers of the Church : A New Translation. New York: Catholic University of America. Ref. BR60 .A62 A6.   Volumes after v.70 are available as eBooks; you have to search the library catalog by series and author for individual volumes, for example: Fathers of the Church Chrysostom

Online Dictrionaries for the Biography portion

Theological Commons (at Princeton Theological Seminary), The
Has a better search interface that most free digital sites, It offers more than 75,000 out-of-copyright titles in religion and theology.  Most of the books were published before 1923.
Early English Books Online (EEBO) subset Some full text available
May help to find Early Modern commentaries: full-text searchable collection of 25,300 eBooks from the roughly 125,000 books and pamphlets to be found in the Pollard and Redgrave and Wing short-title catalogues of early printed books, published in English or in England before 1700. 
 
McKim, Donald K.  Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 2007.
ref BS501 .A1 H57 2007
McKim, Donald K.  Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1998.
ref BS501 .A1 H57 1998
Kannengiesser, Charles. 2004. Handbook of Patristic Exegesis : The Bible in Ancient Christianity, v. 1-2. Leiden: Brill, 2004.
ref BR65 .K34 2004
Kannengiesser is also available online at: http://libproxy.anderson.edu/login?url=http://site.ebrary.com/id/10175342 .

Reformation and early Modern

Similarly to the Ancient Christian writers series, there is a collection of quotations ordered by books of the Bible in the following series.  However, the series is incomplete, and you may not find you book of the Bible, or passage. 

Reformation commentary on Scripture. Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Academic.  Ref. BS491.2 .R43

The works of these reformation authors are widely available.  Look for an index volume which contain scripture indexes.  The first three of these writers are available at Nicholson library.

  • Jean (John) Calvin
    • Located in the circulating stacks, by books of the Bible, not as a set, for example Calvin's commentary on Genesis is at BS1235 .C293 v.1-2 
    • Search the library catalog, like this, substituting your book of the Bible:
      • Calvin commentaries Bible Genesis
    • The Old Testament commentaries are only in a 19th century translation by William Pringle.
    • The New Testament commentaries were translated also more recently, in the 1950s and 1960s edited by Calvin commentaries Bible Torrance, so to find these newer translations add Calvin commentaries Bible Torrance to your search; and you may have to "Place Hold" to get these shipped to Nicholson from Indiana Partner Libraries:
      • Calvin commentaries Bible Hebrews Torrance
  • Martin Luther   -- Stacks BR330 .E5 1955
  • John Wesley  -- Stacks BX8217 .W54 1979
        v.14 is has a scripture index to the other volumes
  • Matthew Henry (https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/001932487 or on many Bible study websites)
  • Jonathan Edwards (American, 1703-1758) -- Stacks BX7117.E3 
        each volume includes a scripture index in the back, you'll need to look in the index in each volume of his sermons, which are arranged by year.
  • Cotton Mather (American, 1663-1728)  v.1 Genesis, v.3 Joshua, v.4 Ezra-Psalms, v.5 Proverbs-Jeremiah, v.9 Romans-Philemon  are available Interlibrary Loan from Indiana Partner Libraries.
    Mather, Cotton. Biblia Americana : America's First Bible Commentary. Edited by Reiner Smolinski, Mohr Siebeck, 2010-
  • Thomas Aquinas (1225?-1274)  He wrote commentaries on most N.T. books, and Psalms, Job, & Lamentations.  You can find English translations on line at http://dhspriory.org/thomas/; or by searching the catalog au:(Thomas Aquinas Saint) and kw:(Bible [Psalms, Galatians, etc.])
  • Cornelius a Lapide (active 1592-1616)
    Catholic counter reformation commentator Great Commentary (online, includes most of the New Testament)

And you can find these people in Dictionaries of Christianity (see above in the biographies section of this guide.)

McKim, Donald K. 1998. Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters.Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.
BS501 .A1 H57 1998  might suggest some other writers from this time period.  
Some might be found in online, 19th century translations
Peter Martyr Vermigli  (search book catalogs for Pietro Martire Vermigli)
Ulrich Zwingli
John Lightfoot
Richard Hooker
 
Sometimes you'll find scholarly sermons from this period which are complied as "commentaries".
Here's a reference book:
Hillerbrand, Hans Joachim. 1996. The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Reformation. New York: Oxford University Press. BR302.8 .O93 1996

Modern and Post-Modern

The biographies of the authors is a difficult part of this assignment.  Maybe try

University/Seminary website for the vita/resume of the author, or a biography blurb (probably written by the university marketing department though)

Review of Biblical Literature
Here you might find reviews modern commentaries, and some more authoritative info on the authors. 

Don't trust dust jackets, publisher websites, or Amazon for these biographies.

 

Here are some commentary series in the Reference Collection

Word biblical commentary. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan. ref BS491.2 .W67
Written mostly in the 1970s and 1980s, solid exegesis, with original languages from a moderate evangelical perspective.
 

New Beacon Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .N49
           A set of commentaries "in the Wesleyan tradition." 

The new international commentary on the Old Testament;  Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans Pub. Co..
ref BS491.2 .N481
Solid exegesis, with original languages, from a reformed evangelical perspective, mid-2000s to present.

 

The New Interpreter's Bible : Books.  Nashville: Abingdon.  ref BS491.2 .N484 1994

 

Mainline protestant perspective, from the mid-1990s
 
Interpretation biblical commentary series.  Westminster/John Knox.  (not shelved as a set, look in the catalog, in the circulation stacks)
Mainline protestant perspective, from the mid-1980s to mid-2000s
 
Smyth & Helwys Bible commentary;  Macon, Ga.: Smyth & Helwys Pub. ref  BS491.2 .S69
Baptist perspective. Feels like a college textbook, from the mid-2000s to present.
 
The new international commentary on the New Testament.  Grand Rapids, Mich.: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co. ref  BS491.2 .N4812
Reformed evangelical from the 2010s
 
Anchor Bible series : A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary. New Haven: Yale University Press. ref  BS491.2 .A512
Scholarly academic perspective from the 1970s to the 2010s.
 
New Beacon Bible Commentary. 2010s  ref BS491.2 .N49
Beacon Bible Commentary. 1960s. Kansas City, Mo.: Beacon Hill Press. ref  BS491.2 .B4
Wesleyan Nazarene (Church of God?) perspective.
 
Newsom, Carol A., Sharon H. Ringe, and Jacqueline E. Lapsley. 2012. Women's Bible Commentary. 3rd ed.Louisville, Ky: Westminster John Knox Press. ref BS491.3 .W66 2012
Example of a commentary explicitly owning its perspective
 
American Bible Society. 1999. Holy Bible : African American Jubilee Edition : Contemporary English Version. Jubilee ed. New York: American Bible Society. Stacks BS185 1999 .N48
Example of a commentary explicitly owning its perspective.
 
McKim, Donald K. 1998. Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press.
ref BS501 .A1 H57 1998

Selected Bible commentary series in the Reference section

Below are descriptions of Bible commentary series in the library reference section. The goal is to help you decide which commentary might work for your assignment.  You'll still need to consult with your professor or judge for yourself which commentaries to use. 

The portions of the description in quotation marks are taken from the preface to each commentary series.  The other comments are from AU librarians.

Abingdon Old/New Testament commentaries - Ref BS491.2 .A246 (probably being relocated to Stacks)

This series "provides compact, critical commentaries" on the Bible.  "It is written for theological students, ... for students in upper-level college or university settings, as well as for pastors and other church leaders."

Africa Bible commentary - Ref BS491.3 .A47 2006

A one volume commentary "written by Africans and primarily for Africans."  It was "produced by seventy African theologians and scholars,"  meeting at Nairobi Evangelical Graduate School of Theology.  The Africa Bible Commentary "contains section-by-section exegesis and explanation of the whole Bible as seen through the eyes of African scholars who respect the integrity of the text and use African proverbs, metaphors and stories to make it speak to African believers in the villages and cities across the entire continent.  SIM (aka. Sudan Interior Mission or Serving in Mission) was "logistically and financially behind the project."

Anchor Bible - Ref BS491.2 .A512

The Anchor Bible "project [is] of international and interfaith scope in which Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish scholars from many countries contribute individual volumes. The project is not sponsored by any ecclesiastical organization and is not intended to reflect any particular theological doctrine."   "It aims to present the best contemporary scholarship in a way that is accessible ..; to the educated non-specialist.  Its approach is grounded in exact translation of the ancient languages and an appreciation of the historical and cultural context in which the biblical books were written, supplemented by insights from modern methods, such as sociological and literary criticism."  Doubleday is a secular publisher.

Apollos Old Testament commentary - Ref BS491.2 .A664

"This series .... keep[s] one foot firmly planted in the universe of the original text and the other in that of the target audience, which is preachers, teachers and students of the Bible."  Authors of this series must "be fully conversant with the literary conventions, sociological and cultural practices, historical background and understanding, and theological perspectives of those who produced the text as well as those whom it [was first written.]  "They must also understand their own times and culture."  "It is not only necessary to interpret the text, but ... also interpret the audience."  InterVarsity Press is an evangelical publisher, historically rooted in college ministry.

Baylor-Mohr Siebeck studies in early Christianity - Ref BS491.3 .B38

Commentaries in this series make "recent German research available in English translation" for "scholars and graduate
students."  Mohr-Siebeck and Baylor University Press are academic publishers.

Beacon Bible Commentary - Ref BS491.2 .B4 (probably being relocated to Stacks)

"We believe in the plenary inspiration of the Bible. ... The Christian faith derives from the Bible. It is the Founda­tion for faith, for salvation, and sanctification. ... The revelation of God and His will for men is adequate and complete in the Bible."  We "earnestly pray that this new offering among Bible commentaries will be helpful to preachers, teachers, and laymen in discovering the deeper meaning of God's Word and in un­folding its message to all who hear them."  Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City is the publisher for the Church of the Nazarene. 1964-1969.

Expositor's Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .E96

"It aims to provide preachers, teachers, and students of the Bible with a comprehensive commentary."  "Its stance is that of a scholarly evangelicalism committed to the divine inspiration, complete trustworthiness, and full authority of the Bible."  Most but not all the "contributors ... are premillennial .. [yet] this commentary gives due recognition to ... godly social concern in the prophetic writings."  The methodology of "this commentary is the grammatico-historical one - namely, that the primary aim of the exegete is to make clear the meaning of the text at the time and in the circumstances of its writing .. [with] attention to matters of grammar and syntax, word meanings, idioms, and literary forms."

Hermeneia: a critical and historical commentary on the Bible - Ref BS491.2 .H47

Hermeneia is the word "in the ancient Greek-speaking world, for the detailed, systematic exposition of a scriptural work."   "Hermeneia is designed for the serious student of the Bible."   "It will use ... [Hebrew], Greek, Latin, Canaanite, or Akkadian ... to provide ... a full critical discussion, [based upon] the primary data."  "Hermeneia is ... international and interconfessional."   It refrains from making sermon application.  Fortress Press is a mainline Lutheran publisher.  EBooks of all volumes of this commentary series are also available from Nicholson Library.

Historical commentary on the Old Testament - Ref BS 491.3 .H57

This international series "devotes explicit attention the history of biblical tradition in all its stages, both within and without the Hebrew canon."  It is "intended... for scholars, ministers and other interested parties."  It "stands in the Christian exegetical tradition."   Peeters is a scholarly publishing house based in Belgium.

International critical commentary  - Ref BS491 .I6

T & T Clark, Bloomsbury, 1895-2019

International exegetical commentary on the Old Testament - Ref BS 491.3 I58

IECOT is written for "a broad, international audience of scholars, laypeople and pastors."  It is "international, ecumenical and contemporary."  "This series [aims] to bring synchronic and diachronic methods into closer alignment."  "Synchronic studies embrace non-historical narratological, reader-response ... approaches."  "Diachronic ... include[s] use of manuscript evidence to identify pre-stages of the biblical text ... to reconstruct its formation over time, and also [examines] the ways in which a biblical text may be in dialogue with earlier biblical text."  "Each author or team of authors will highlight specific contemporary methodological and hermeneutical perspectives -- e.g. gender-critical, liberation-theological, reception-historical, social-historical."  Kohlhammer is a German science and theological publisher.

Interpreter's Bible - Ref BS491.2 .I55 (probably being relocated to Stacks)

A widely used commentary published in the 1950's for students and pastors.  Each page has two sections: exegesis and exposition, written by separate authors.   Abingdon Press publishes for the United Methodist Church and mainline churches in general.

New American commentary - Ref BS491.2 .N491

"Designed ... to enable pastors, teachers, and students to read the Bible with clarity and proclaim it with power."  "The Bible primarily belongs to the church.  ... Scholarship and the academy provide an indispensable foundation for biblical understanding..., but the ... authors ... communicate ... their research in a manner that will build up the whole body of Christ."  "Discussions relating to contemporary scholarship and technical points of grammar and syntax appear in the footnotes."  Broadman (now B&H) publishing is a division of the Southern Baptist Convention.

New Beacon Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .N49

A set of commentaries "in the Wesleyan tradition."   Authors" task is to communicate clearly the critical consensus ... to demonstrate .. the significance of the Bible as the church's book and ... [its] contemporary relevance."  The comment on each Bible "paragraph has three parts: Behind the Text, In the Text, and From the Text."  "Behind" includes "historical situations, .. literary context, ... sociological and cultural issues, and literary features" of the text. "In the Text" includes 'grammatical details, word
studies, and the connect[ions]  to other biblical ... passages."  "From the Text" includes "theological significance, intertextuality, the history of interpretation, use of the Old Testament scriptures in the New Testament, interpretation in later church history, actualization, and application."  This set  fits some of the understandings and methods of some Church of God (Anderson) and evangelical Methodist congregations.  Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City is the publisher for the Church of the Nazarene.

New Collegeville Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .N471 (being relocated to Stacks)

Brief understandable books for Bible study participants, teachers and preachers. Most authors for this series are seminary professors.  Liturgical Press is a Catholic Benedictine publisher.

New international commentary on the Old/New Testament - Ref BS491.2 .N481

The series draws on "... recent methodolog[ies] .. for example, canon criticism, new literary criticism, reader-response theories, sensitivity to gender-based and ethnic readings."   "This series ... speaks from within ... evangelicalism, ... an informal movement within Protestantism [with] ... the conviction that the Bible is God's inspired Word, written by gifted human writers, through which God calls humanity to enjoy a loving personal relationship with its Creator and Savior."  Each author "writes as an expert in both the biblical text itself and the relevant scholarly literature ... convey[ing] ... mature reflection."  Eerdmans is a scholarly, reformed publisher based in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

New international Greek New Testament - Ref BS 2341.2 .N483 

"Cater[s] particularly to the needs of student of the Greek text."  "Attempt[s] to provide a theological understanding of the text, based on historical-critical-linguistic exegesis."  It  "interact[s] with significant New Testament research published in recent articles and [books]" and seeks to makes its "own scholarly contribution to the ongoing study of the biblical text."  Eerdmans is a scholarly, reformed publisher based in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

New interpreter's Bible - Ref BS491.2 .N484

It's "aim ... is to bring the best in contemporary biblical scholarship into the service of the church to enhance preaching, teaching, and study of the Scriptures."  It "provides an exegetical analysis informed by linguistic, text-critical, historical-critical, literary, social-scientific, and theological methods."  Abingdon Press publishes for the United Methodist Church and mainline churches in general.

Pillar New Testament commentary - Ref BS 2341.2 .P544

"Designed for serious pastors and teachers of the Bible, the Pillar commentaries seek above all to make clear the text of Scripture as we have it [canonical criticism]. The scholars writing these volumes interact with the most important informed contemporary debate, but avoid getting mired in undue technical detail. Their ideal is a blend of rigorous exegesis and exposition, with an eye alert both to biblical theology and to the contemporary relevance of the Bible."  Eerdmans is a scholarly, reformed publisher based in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Reformation commentary on scripture - Ref BS491.2 .R432

This series is made up of "exegetical comment ... gathered from the writings of sixteenth century preachers, scholars and reformers."  Selections were originally written "from the late 1400s to the mid-seventeenth century."  Most of the quotations were translated into English by the editor of each volume, so it may be difficult to find the fuller context of a quotation in English translation.

Smyth & Helwys Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .S69

This sets "primary goal ... is to make available serious, credible biblical scholarship ... accessible to a wider audience." It is formatted like a college textbook, with sidebars, maps, charts, photos, and other visually appealing elements.  "Considerable attention
is given to the wording and structure of texts ... in the light of the entire canon of Christian Scriptures."  Information from archeology,
ancient history, geography, comparative literature, history of religions, politics, sociology, and ... economics is used to illuminate the culture of ... the Bible.  And it draws from "the history of interpretation in traditional commentary ... [and] in literature, theater, church history, and the visual arts. Finally, the commentary [makes] connections to the world of the contemporary church.  Smyth & Helwys is an independent Baptist publisher.

The transforming word - Ref BS491.3 .T73

This is a one volume commentary, produced by authors from the Christian Churches and Churches of Christ and Stone-Campbell movement. The publisher is Abilene Christian University Press.

Wesleyan Bible commentary - Ref BS491.2 .W4

It "aims at a high level of sound biblical scholarship, with a purpose that is practical rather than technical."  It aims to "maintain... the spiritual insight .. of John Wesley and Adam Clarke."  It includes "the social implications and provision of the gospel of Jesus Christ."  This set fits some of the understandings and methods of conservative Church of God (Anderson) and evangelical Methodist churches.  Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City is the primary publisher for the Church of the Nazarene.

Women's Bible commentary, 3rd edition, 2012 - Ref BS Ref 491.3 W55 2012

A one volume Bible commentary, featuring women authors writing about each book of the Bible from the perspective of feminist criticism.  Articles from the first two editions are also interesting.  Westminster John Knox Press is a mainline Presbyterian publisher.

Word biblical commentary - Ref BS491.2 .W67

This commentary set is known for clear historical-critical exegesis divided in sections expressing distinct methods of exegesis.  Often the sections follow the same order as assignments in exegesis courses.  Though "based on biblical languages, ... it seeks to make the technical and scholarly approach[es] ... understandable by and useful to fledgling student[s]."   Word Books was an evangelical publisher; which was purchased by Thomas Nelson, which was purchased by HarperCollins.

Zondervan exegetical commentary on the Old / New Testament - Ref BS 2341.2 .Z662

Utilizing "discourse analysis" this series emphasizes "the rhetorical agendas of biblical authors... [with] careful attention to the flow and argument of [the] text."   "Commentators will address ... Literary context, ... Structure and literary form ... Explanation of the text, attending to how the biblical authors select and arrange their materials, ... words, phrases, and syntax to communicate, [and] Canonical and practical significance."  Zondervan is an evangelical publisher.  This series is part of their academic line of books.

Web Sites

Theological Commons (at Princeton Theological Seminary), The

 

Has a better search interface that most free digital sites, It offers more than 75,000 out-of-copyright titles in religion and theology.  Most of the books were published before 1923.

Early English Books Online (EEBO) subset
May help to find Early Modern commentaries: full-text searchable collection of 25,300 eBooks from the roughly 125,000 books and pamphlets to be found in the Pollard and Redgrave and Wing short-title catalogues of early printed books, published in English or in England before 1700. 

Christian Classics Ethereal Library 
Classic Christian Writings sponsored by Calvin College.

Various online Bibles, such as:

 A searchable collections of Bibles including: English versions; Greek and Hebrew versions; ancient versions; plus many versions in other languages. Includes additional searchable full-text tools such as topical indexes and commentaries.

Search for Books and eBooks

Advanced Catalog Searching

Selecting Keywords for Searching for Books, eBooks, and Articles

Searching ATLA Religion Database for Scripture passages

Please watch this more advanced video about the ATLA Religion Database,
teaching you how to search its unique index of Scripture passages.

Assoc. Professor, Electronic Resources Librarian

Browzine Christian Ministries

Key to Icons

Restricted Resource = AU login required
Some full text available = Full-text included
Resource contains images = Images included
Resource contains video = Video included
Resource contains audio = Audio included