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Shadows of Divine Things

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Location: Texas, United States

This site is devoted to theological and philosophical investigations of the spiritual meanings of life, current events, music, spiritual growth, nature, and learning to be attuned to listening to the 'language of God.' The name of this blog comes from one of Jonathan Edwards's journals which he called 'Shadows of Divine Things,' and later renamed 'Images of Divine Things.' As a Christian I am continously on a spiritual journey to grow more into the image of Christ, to understand what it means to be crucified with Christ. To seek the truths of the Christian Faith is of upmost importance, and to know that any truths that are found outside of Christianity are present there because they ultimately point to God. I have an M.A. in theology and apologetics and I completed one year of graduate studies in Philosophy at Marquette University.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture

InterVarsity Press recently sent me a mailer in the post to “join” (for lack of a better term) a continuous mailer program, sort of like a book club. What happens is I purchase the first commentary (which is the Gospel of Mark), get a free book with the commentary, for the low introductory price of $9.99 (plus S&H), and every two to three months they send me another commentary in the set.

Actually, looking over the literature that IVP sent, the commentary set looked really cool! Let me give you some details:

First, it is a commentary set of the Old and New Testaments (and the Apocrypha which is forthcoming) build around the exegesis of the Patristic Church Fathers.

Second, the set is edited by Thomas C. Oden (who is known for Patristic Church history and theology) and Christopher A. Hall.

Third, besides the fact that there is no other commentary set like this, what it does is save a tremendous amount of time in pouring through the Early Church Fathers to find text references and comments about individual books of the Bible since here they are collected into each volume in a verse by verse commentary.

Fourth, the researchers/contributors for these volumes are quite remarkable (those being the early Church Fathers, of course). Moreover, the set is endorsed by some of the well known scholars. People such as J.I. Packer, Richard John Neuhaus, David F. Wells, Avery Cardinal Dulles, Timothy George, Elizabeth Achtemeier, Haddon Robinson, and Bruce Metzger give praises and recommendations to the volumes.

So, I actually sent the response card in and ordered the first volume and the free book. I have actually received the first volume, Mark, and intend to use this commentary to do a study over the next few weeks through the Gospel of Mark. The commentary is structured like most other commentaries in that it goes through the text verse by verse. The difference is that this commentary is built around the thoughts of dozens upon dozens of men like Augustine, Athanasius, Clement of Alexandria, Cyril, Ignatius, and many others. There is actually a biographical sketch of every Church Father that was used in the entire set at the back of this edition along with a timeline of writers of the Patristic Period, both are very helpful. The research for this set is remarkable as well. Every available source one would need to draw from the Patristic Church Fathers was utilized (the research abbreviation section is just under two pages).

Needless to say I am excited about this set and can’t wait to get all the subsequent volumes; especially since I love Patristic Church history so much. Below are some Amazon links to the two books I received so you can check them out (or order them for yourself if you like). The first link box is the commentary, the second link box is the free book IVP sent with the commentary.





[Personally, I think InterVarsity Press should pay me for this great plug, huh? But then again, I did provide several Amazon links . . . hmmmm . . . maybe I should get royalties from both!]

4 Comments:

Blogger Ben Myers said...

It sounds like a good deal. Do you get the other ones in the set at a reduced price too?

In a similar way, Thomas Oden's 3-volume Systematic Theology is a handy resource for patristic quotations on theological topics.

11:43 PM, January 24, 2006  
Blogger T.B. Vick said...

The other volumes are $27.99, which is about 30% off the retail price.

I have the first volume of Oden's Systematic Theology, and have read other works by him . . . I really like his work.

For Christmas I got the 38 volume Early Church Fathers set, so this IVP commentary set will be a nice compliment the larger set.

11:51 PM, January 24, 2006  
Blogger The Cubicle Reverend said...

Actually that does sound cool. I love looking around The Christian Classics Ethereal Library to see what i can find.

7:13 AM, January 25, 2006  
Blogger T.B. Vick said...

CR,

Yeah, that's a good web site.

8:40 AM, January 25, 2006  

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