Judges and Ruth is an Old Testament commentary, written by Robert B. Chisholm Jr. and published by Kregel Academic. Commentaries on Judges and Ruth can be either highly critical or devotional in nature. I therefore was pleasantly surprised when I read Chisholm’s work and found it to be on the conservative side while still engaging with high criticism scholarship. It has been a long time since a scholarly mostly conservative work has been published on the books of Judges and Ruth and Chisholm did not disappoint, although I expected a more lengthy work. Yet in the space he was given he used it wisely.
This commentary is the a newer edition of the emerging Kregel Exegetical Library Series, a series which is synonymous with through exegesis and spot on application, this volume not only continues this legacy, but truly propels it to new heights. This volume is one of the most articulate and practical commentaries on the historical books of which is usually bogged down by from criticism and or feminist propaganda. Furthermore Chisholm does answer these critical issues, something he does flawlessly by the way, he interacts with critical scholarship in a way most conservative commentators don’t. From this it is easy to see why Chisholm is a highly regarded scholar and superior exegete.
Judges and Ruth has two main sections the typical general introduction, and then followed by a insightful exegetical commentaries on the books of Judges and Ruth. With regard to the general introduction it is the typical study into the introductory matters of the book and how they relate to the Bible as a whole. This is a serious scholarly work which dives into contextual as well as the as the different methodical approaches to study of this books of Judges and Ruth takes great care in carefully showing the original context of passage while applying it directly to the modern day reader. He uses his own translation of the Hebrew text, which demonstrates his knowledge of the original language. I do wish though that there was more application to some of the more difficult passages.
While I disagree with Chisholm on a few minor issues with regard to Old Testament date of writing, the arguments he makes are sound I just adhere to a earlier date of composition. Chisholm is innovate in his interpretation and application while staying stalwart in his commitment to orthodoxy. In the vein of recommending, Judges and Ruth, to others I would recommend this commentary to pastors and scholars, yet I would highly recommend pastors, such as myself, to pair this scholarly commentary with one that is one that has more of a pastoral tone. There are many commentaries about the book of Exodus available at this moment but Judges and Ruth of the Kregel Exegetical Library series is a very scholarly works worthy of your time.
This book was provided to me free of charge from Kregel in exchange for an unbiased, honest review.
Exodus: Kregel Exegetical Library
© 2013 by Robert B. Chisholm Jr.
Page Count: 697 Pages