There are many different types of commentaries, some are more scholarly, some are more devotional in nature. In the end while some are on either extreme, most fall somewhere in the middle, as is the case with Zondervan Exegetical Commetnary on the New Testament series published by Zondervan. The newest commentary in this series is 1, 2, 3 John by Karen H. Jobes, and it is a master piece. This is common place for a commentary series which is known for excellence in scholarship yet practical in application.
In many commentaries about 1, 2, 3 John the main focus is 1 John, with little or no attention paid to 2 and 3 John. Sadly this is the case with this commentary, yet the limited space spend on 2 and 3 John does not negate the plethora of attention paid to 1st John. Furthermore while this commentary is a mid-level commentary, weighing in at over 360 pages, Jobes, attention to detail in 1 John makes this commentary a worthwhile read for both the pastor and the laymen, with a slight bent to the laymen.
A pastor will find that Jobes practical insights extremely helpful in giving application from the text to his congregants, while the laymen will find this commentaries easy to use formant and the non-technical format an easy read. It is truly the best of both worlds.
When looking specifically a this commentary Jobes spends about 30 pages on introductory matters. While this seems small, when compared with the relatively small size of the commentary itself the introductory comments take up over 10% of the work, which is larger than average. When investigating maters specifically with the text of scripture, Jobes takes an interesting approach. When exegeting on 1st John he deals mostly with the imagery that the apostle whom Jesus loved wrote in. Yet he does not fall into the trap of many commentators in allegorizing the imagery.
In the end I would recommend this commentary as in introduction to pastors and Sunday school teachers, that help tremendously with the laymen a pastor will want another commentary to pair with this wonderfully practical commentary on scripture.
This book was provided to me free of charge from Zondervan Publishing in exchange for an unbiased, honest review.