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5 Stars Out Of 5
Dr. Clowny has amazing insights.
June 20, 2012
Dr. Edmund Clowny writes beautifully, but beyond that, he articulates many rather complex ideas with clarity. The commentary is formatted in a way that is easy to follow, and it has excellent study questions at the end which require far more than fill-in-the-blank responses. They are thought-provoking without being ponderous, and they allow for a personalized consideration of the topic if desired. This is an excellent commentary: Highly recommended.
This is by far one of the best devotional commentaries on 1 Peter that I have ever read. It should be read, as the author suggests, as well as consulted as a reference work. The language is not technical, and therefore anyone can read it and learn much from it. I highly recommend this book for the layman, seminary student, ministers, and pastors.
There are several legitimate strengths to Clowneys work. First, the devotional quality of the book is outstanding. It is apparent that the author has done his homework and is no slouch on the technical issues in the text. However, he wisely reserves these concerns for footnotes or appendices. Clowneys intent in this work is noted in the opening sentence of the preface, This exposition has been written in the hope that it will be read and not just consulted. The NIV text is interspersed throughout the comments so the reader can very easily move through the book and not even have to look back and forth from Bible to commentary. The text divisions are relatively short allowing the reader to sit down and easily read a complete section on a specific passage in 10-15 minutes. Clowney has also labored to use illustrations from life and history in his exposition of 1 Peter, rendering something that reads more like a well-researched sermon than a cold commentary. Second, Clowney draws his research from both contemporary commentaries and early church fathers. This adds considerable breadth and interest. Lastly, Clowney is a relative expert in the field of biblical theology which focuses on putting the story of the Bible together. 1 Peter, with its numerous Old Testament quotations and allusions, provides a worthy proving ground for Clowneys biblical-theological enterprise. Some weaknesses of the work are the seemingly repetitive flashbacks to Peters former ministry alongside Jesus. Certainly, we can draw much from the apostles experiences recorded in the gospels, but Clowney may go too far in creating a veritable psyche for Peters writing. Also, the study guide questions in the back are not very good. Without a doubt the strengths of this commentary outnumber its weaknesses. I would highly recommend this commentary for anyone seeking a devotional guide for going through the book of 1 Peter.