John: St. Andrew's Expositional Commentary
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Romans: St. Andrew's Expositional Commentary-eBookR.C. SproulCrossway Books / 2009 / ePub$9.99 Retail:4.5 Stars Out Of 5 3 Reviews
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John presents the fruits of Dr. R.C. Sproul's lifetime of biblical study as expressed in his most recent calling. After a long and distinguished ministry as a teacher in various settings, Dr. Sproul accepted a call in 1997 to preach at St. Andrew's in Sanford, Florida. There, he adopted the ancient practice of preaching through books of the Bible, eventually working his way through several of them.
John is very accessible to the common reader. It is, in many ways, a laymans commentary. Written as a byproduct of his exegetical sermons in the gospel of John, the tone of the book will remind the reader of Barclays commentaries from a generation ago, or N.T. Wrights For Everyone commentaries on the New Testament. The difference between those commentaries and this one is that Dr. Sprouls theology would be defined both as more evangelical and more reformed.
Throughout John, Dr. Sproul addresses common questions that are asked in nearly every congregation. For instance he says, The theological question I hear most often is this: What happens to the innocent native in Africa who has never heard the gospel?(p. 234).
Once Dr. Sproul identifies questions like the one above, he goes about answering them in a clear and succinct manner. In addition to identifying questions he knows we all want answered, Dr. Sproul clearly correlates what is happening in the Bible to what we all experience. Specifically intriguing to me was Dr. Sprouls explanation of John the Baptists statement of He must increase, and I must decrease in John 3:30.
John is also the result of a top-notch theological mind. Over and over again, I was impressed with what I learned from Dr. Sproul, and how he noticed important points in the text that most others would completely pass over.
The only disappointing part of this for some will be with the title of the commentary seriesSt. Andrews Expositional Commentary, and its relation to what the reader actually discovers while reading the book. John is advertised as an expository commentary. It is expositional in that it was the result of exegetical preaching. But it is not expository in the sense of clearly taking the passages he looks over verse by verse and examining them in that fashion. Instead Dr. Sproul looks at sections of Scripture at one time, as he goes through the whole book of John. I personally am very comfortable with Dr. Sprouls approach, but some may object or feel misled.
All in all, I would recommend this commentary for a pastor preaching a sermon, a lay person teaching a Sunday School class, or a person who simply wanted to understand more of what the Bible is saying. And, after reading this commentary I am eager to read more in this series. Clint Walker, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Little HamChapin, SCAge: Over 65Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5Excellent InsightDecember 18, 2014Little HamChapin, SCAge: Over 65Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5As with his other commentaries, Sproul provides textual insight applicable to today and all
Bentley CrawfordAge: 25-34Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5Simple, Yet Profound. Vintage R.C. SproulDecember 26, 2010Bentley CrawfordAge: 25-34Gender: maleQuality: 4Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5R.C. Sproul and Reformation Trust Publishing have teamed up to bring us classic teaching by Dr. Sproul in the form of commentaries. They have now published commentaries on Romans, John, and the book of Acts with another for 1st and 2nd Peter due out March 2011.
It might also be helpful to note that these commentaries are taken from expositional sermon series that he has done at his church in St. Andrew's Florida.
I'm a big fan of Dr. Sproul and was looking forward to reading his new commentary on the book of John and in true R.C. Sproul fashion I was not let down. I want to simply list a few thoughts I had about this commentary:
1. It looks like a great commentary for the everyday Bible reader. It's not very lengthy nor is it technical.It is a great resource for those wanting guidance without a lengthy reading commitment.
2. However, it is unique in how much R.C. is able to pack into such little space. Which is one of the great things about his writing ability. He is able to quickly and seemingly effortlessly guide us through complex issues, point us to Jesus at every turn, and take us quickly into worship of God. We can trust that much technical and meditative work has been done and is coming through to us in a way that is easy to understand.
3. Which makes this an ideal commentary even for those wanting to seriously grapple with the text. Those wanting to go more technical will benefit from this commentary by having it on hand when the going gets tough to help bring them back to seeing the bigger picture. And not only that, but also with R.C's ability to write simply and profoundly there is goldmine behind each statement begging us to dig even deeper into the riches of Christ.
4. I appreciated that the text of the Bible was written out at the beginning of each section. No doubt it can often be assumed that those looking at commentaries have their Bible's out, but why take the risk? Also, it shows the priority that is placed on God's Word and it is certainly only to our benefit that it be read afresh before diving into the commentary.
5. Finally, each section is wrapped up with contemplative thoughts on application as the meaning of the text is brought out, showing how we can think about this passage and what it may be calling for in response from us. There are often calls for christian's worship of Jesus, reminder's of God's astonishing love and grace in our lives, and calls for repentance and faith for unbelievers.
In conclusion, Sproul's love of Jesus and of His gospel are often evident. This commentary will hopefully prove useful in not only helping to explain the text to many, but also in eliciting our worship and experience of the gospel of our great Savior.
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