Commentary Series

There are many series of commentaries. Below are some of the major series in English. Note that some of the commentaries in these series are still being written.

Anchor Bible

[Ref. BS192.2.A1 1964 G3; also stacks] The Anchor Bible commentaries are intended for the general reader, yet are stringent in their linguistic and historical scholarship. Hebrew and Greek words are transliterated.

Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture

[Not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in Ref.] This series is an edited collection of early Christian writers' comments on the Bible. Depending upon the volume, short descriptions and chronologies of authors and anonymous works may be included in an appendix. An author index is included, along with a bibliography of original sources. The scope of the included material is somewhat limited, due to the editorial decision to focus on material appropriate for a lay audience and useful for common worship and spiritual formation. For scholarly work, it is suggested that the researcher utilize comment citations to locate the original source of the comment and read it in context.


[Not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in Ref. and stacks] This series offers commentaries on canonical, pseudepigraphic, and Apocryphal texts, employing a wide range of methodology within historical-critical interpretation, including textual criticism, history of tradition, history of religion, and contemporary literary analysis. All citations from ancient sources are translated into English.

International Critical Commentary

[Ref. BS491.I6 and Ref.491.I619; also stacks] This series is concerned with detailed analysis of archaeological, historical, hermeneutical, and theological questions relating to the text. Practical and homiletical topics are generally avoided. The series was made to be accessible to the reader who lacks knowledge of Greek or Hebrew. The original series was begun in 1895, and the new series was inaugurated in 1975 to take advantage of more recent scholarship, discoveries, and methodology. Even though the original series is older, many volumes are still relevant to the field of biblical studies.


[Not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in the stacks] This series is an aid for homiletical and educational work, combining historical and theological inquiry.

Interpreter's Bible and New Interpreter's Bible

[Ref. BS491.2.I65 and Ref. BS491.2.N484 1994; also stacks] These commentaries facilitate the use of critical scholarship in practical, pastoral applications. There are two commentaries for each biblical passage, one exegetical and the other homiletical or reflective. The King James and Revised Standard versions of the Bible are placed side by side for comparison in the older series; the New International Version and the New Revised Standard Version are used in the new series.

JPS Torah Commentary and JPS Bible Commentary

[Not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in Ref.] These series published by the Jewish Publication Society integrates rabbinic tradition into a series of commentaries on the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. The degree of engagement with source and textual criticism varies from volume to volume, but is generally conservative insofar as the Torah is viewed in its final (Jewish) canonical form. Linguistic matters along with Near Eastern literary and archaeological discoveries are well treated. Detailed excurses on particular topics are included in each volume. The JPS Bible Commentary series is a continuation of the JPS Torah Commentary, offering volumes on books from the Writings and Prophets.

New International Commentary

[Old Testament: Ref. BS1151.2.N35; also stacks. New Testament: not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in Ref. and stacks] These commentaries are written from the perspective of Reformed theology. While theologically motivated, the commentaries are conversant with modern, critical scholarship. The introduction and main exposition of texts are in English, with more technical philological matters dealt with in footnotes, special notes, and appendixes. Revisions of some volumes have been published. 

Old Testament Library

[Not shelved as a set; see call numbers for specific biblical books in Ref. and stacks] This series treats theological and literary dimensions of the Bible within the methodological framework of modern critical scholarship. Some volumes are translations of older works from the German series Das Alte Testament Deutsch. Others are commentaries original to the Old Testament Library, and still others are studies of themes and genres, as opposed to individual texts.

Word Biblical Commentary

[BS491.2 .W67] This commentary is written from an interdenominational, yet clearly conservative Christian perspective. Hebrew and Greek words are used, with Greek words left in their original script. Treatment of texts is divided into four sections: transition, notes, form/structure/setting, and comment.