Best 1-2 Kings Commentaries | Updated for 2020

The best 1-2 Kings commentaries are listed below. The commentaries listed first are those that have received the best reviews.

You will also find options for commentaries on 1-2 Kings that help pastors, teachers, and readers with application of the Bible, commentaries that approach the Scripture verse-by-verse, classic Christian commentaries, and much more.


1-2 Kings Commentaries: Best Reviews


1 and 2 Kings
New American Commentary
by Paul R. House

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Kings commentary Paul House

Reviews and Accolades:

• Desiring God: #1 recommended commentary on 1 and 2 Kings

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “an excellent and clear exposition”

• John H. Walton and Andrew E. Hill: “Insightful literary reading of the biblical narrative.”

• Keith Mathison: #2 ranked commentary on 1 and 2 Kings, “House explores historical, literary, canonical, theological, and applicational concerns thoroughly and competently. Highly recommended.”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New American Commentary is introduced to bridge the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.”

This “series has been designed primarily to enable pastors, teachers, and students to read the Bible with clarity and proclaim it with power.”

See more about the New American Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Understanding the Bible Commentary Series
by Iain W. Provan

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Kings commentary Provan

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 5 out of 5 stars, “the best available commentary on Kings… the writing is very accessible”

• Keith Mathison: #3 ranked commentary on 1-2 Kings, “[Provan] explores the theological themes of the book within its larger redemptive-historical context. Very readable and useful for pastors and teachers.”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “Each volume in the Understanding the Bible Commentary Series breaks down the barriers between the ancient and modern worlds so that the power and meaning of the biblical texts become transparent to contemporary readers.”

See more about the Understanding the Bible Commentary Series.


I Kings
The Anchor Yale Bible Commentaries
by Mordechai Cogan

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Kings commentary Cogan

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “emphasizes history and ancient Near Eastern background but is also sensitive to literary qualities”

• Keith Mathison: #5 ranked commentary on 1-2 Kings, “written from a somewhat critical perspective and should be used with care, but the author’s knowledge of the ancient Near Eastern context makes these works very helpful for those interested in more technical commentaries”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Anchor Yale Bible Series, previously the Anchor Bible Series, is a renowned publishing program that for more than 50 years has produced books devoted to the latest scholarship on the Bible and biblical topics.”

See more about the Anchor Bible Commentary series.


2 Kings
The Anchor Yale Bible Commentaries
by Mordechai Cogan and Hayim Tadmor

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Kings commentary Tadmor

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, authors are “historically oriented experts in Mesopotamian studies”

• Keith Mathison: #5 ranked commentary on 2 Kings, “written from a somewhat critical perspective and should be used with care, but the author’s knowledge of the ancient Near Eastern context makes these works very helpful for those interested in more technical commentaries”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Anchor Yale Bible Series, previously the Anchor Bible Series, is a renowned publishing program that for more than 50 years has produced books devoted to the latest scholarship on the Bible and biblical topics.”

See more about the Anchor Bible Commentary series.


1 Kings
Focus on the Bible
by Dale Ralph Davis

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Kings commentary Dale Ralph Davis

Reviews and Accolades:

• Keith Mathison: #1 ranked commentary on 1 Kings, “outstanding… should be on the shelf of every Bible student and pastor”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, adult Sunday school classes

Purpose: From the publisher: “These commentaries are popular level commentaries especially useful for pastors and small group leaders. They are useful for personal devotions and spiritual growth.

Many of the authors of the commentaries are leading expositors of God’s Word on their specialty subjects. The series holds to the inerrancy of scripture and the uniqueness of Christ in salvation.”

See more about the Focus on the Bible commentary series.


2 Kings
Focus on the Bible
by Dale Ralph Davis

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Kings commentary Davis

Reviews and Accolades:

• Keith Mathison: #1 ranked commentary on 2 Kings, “outstanding… should be on the shelf of every Bible student and pastor”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, adult Sunday school classes

Purpose: From the publisher: “These commentaries are popular level commentaries especially useful for pastors and small group leaders. They are useful for personal devotions and spiritual growth.

Many of the authors of the commentaries are leading expositors of God’s Word on their specialty subjects. The series holds to the inerrancy of scripture and the uniqueness of Christ in salvation.”

See more about the Focus on the Bible commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
NIV Application Commentary
by August H. Konkel

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Kings commentary Konkel

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “readable and insightful… appeals particularly to pastors”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the General Editor: The primary goal of the NIV Application Commentary Series is to help you with the difficult but vital task of bringing an ancient message into a modern context.

The series not only focuses on application as a finished product but also helps you think through the process of moving from the original meaning of a passage to its contemporary significance.”

See more about the NIV Application Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Tyndale Old Testament Commentary
by Donald J. Wiseman

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Kings commentary Wiseman

Reviews and Accolades:

• Keith Mathison: #4 ranked commentary on 1 Kings, “accessible to virtually any reader… good introduction to the books of 1 & 2 Kings”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: This series is “designed to help readers understand what the Bible actually says and what it means… [each commentary] examines the text section by section, drawing out its main themes.

It also comments on individual verses and deals with problems of interpretation. The aim throughout is to get at the true meaning of the Bible and to make its message plain to readers today.”

See more about the Tyndale Old Testament Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Smyth and Helwys Bible Commentary
by Walter Brueggemann

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Kings commentary Brueggeman

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “Brueggemann is always asking questions that are relevant to church and society today”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written by accomplished scholars with all students of Scripture in mind, this innovative new commentary series is designed to make quality Bible study more accessible.

Pastors, professors and students of Scripture are discovering that this commentary is a wonderful new tool for enhancing interpretation.”

See more about Smyth-Helwys bible commentaries.


1 and 2 Kings
Interpretation
by Richard Nelson

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Kings commentary Nelson

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out 5, “concentrates on theology and literature… he writes in a vivid and engaging style”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “This series of commentaries offers an interpretation of the books of the Bible.

It is designed to meet the need of students, teachers, ministers, and priests for a contemporary expository commentary.

These volumes will not replace the historical critical commentary or homiletical aids to preaching.”

See more about the Interpretation Bible commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Everyman’s Bible Commentary
by Robert L. Hubbard

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Kings commentary Hubbard

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “an excellent popular commentary”

Best for: individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, adult Sunday school classes

Purpose: From the publisher: This series presents “a careful section-by-section exposition of the biblical books with key terms and phrases highlighted and all Hebrew transliterated.

Notes at the close of each chapter provide additional textual and technical comments for those who want to dig deeper.”


1 and 2 Kings
Brazos Theological Commentary
by Peter J. Leithart

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Kings commentary Leithart

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “a fascinating reading of Kings from an ecclesial, christological (evangelical), and theological point of view”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible enlists leading theologians to read and interpret Scripture for the twenty-first century, just as the church fathers, the Reformers, and other Orthodox Christians did for their times and places.

See more about the Brazos Theological Commentary series.”


1 and 2 Kings
The Old Testament Library
by John Gray

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Kings commentary Gray

Reviews and Accolades:

• John H. Walton and Andrew E. Hill: “An indispensable commentary for its treatment of the Hebrew text, historical background, and annalistic sources of Kings, though his reconstructionist Hebrew history is not always agreeable to evangelicals.”

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Old Testament Library provides fresh and authoritative treatments of important aspects of Old Testament study through commentaries and general surveys. The contributors are scholars of international standing.”

See more about the Old Testament Library commentary series.


Verse-by-Verse Expository Commentaries


1 Kings
Reformed Expositional Commentary
by Philip Graham Ryken

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Kings commentary Ryken

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: individual study, devotional reading, Bible studies, adult Sunday school classes

Purpose: The REC series has “four fundamental commitments. First, these commentaries aim to be biblical… Second, these commentaries are unashamedly doctrinal… Third, these commentaries are redemptive-historical… Fourth, these commentaries are practical…” All authors are “pastor-scholars.”

See more about the Reformed Expository Commentary series.


1 Kings
Word Biblical Commentary
by Simon J. DeVries

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Kings commentary Devries

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “WBC series delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation.

It emphasizes a thorough analysis of textual, linguistic, structural, and theological evidence. The result is judicious and balanced insight into the meanings of the text in the framework of biblical theology.” 

See more about the Word Biblical Commentary series.


2 Kings
Word Biblical Commentary
by T.R. Hobbs

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Kings commentary Hobbs

Reviews and Accolades:

• Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “a well-written and insightful commentary”

Approach to Scripture: Evangelical

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “WBC series delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation.

It emphasizes a thorough analysis of textual, linguistic, structural, and theological evidence. The result is judicious and balanced insight into the meanings of the text in the framework of biblical theology.” 

See more about the Word Biblical Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Apollos Old Testament Commentary
by Lissa M. Wray Beal

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Kings commentary Beal

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Apollos Old Testament Commentary (AOTC) aims to take with equal seriousness the divine and human aspects of Scripture.

It expounds the books of the Old Testament in a scholarly manner accessible to non-experts, and it shows the relevance of the Old Testament to modern readers.”

See more about the Apollos Old Testament Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Expositor’s Bible Commentary Revised
by Richard D. Patterson and Hermann J. Austel

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Kings commentary Expositor's

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “Written primarily by expositors for expositors… its stance is that of a scholarly evangelicalism committed to the divine inspiration, complete trustworthiness, and full authority of the Bible… the chief principle followed in this commentary is the grammatico-historical.”

See more about the Expositor’s Bible Commentary series.


The Message of Kings
The Bible Speaks Today
by John W. Olley

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Kings commentary Olley

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: The “the three distinctives of The Bible Speaks Today series are (1) “BST authors are committed to a serious study of the text in its own integrity,” (2) that “expositors should not be antiquarians, living only in the remote past” but suggest application for living, and (3) “each book is intended to be both readable in style and manageable in size.” 

See more about the Bible Speaks Today commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
The Old Testament Library
by Marvin A. Sweeney

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Kings commentary Sweeney

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Old Testament Library provides fresh and authoritative treatments of important aspects of Old Testament study through commentaries and general surveys. The contributors are scholars of international standing.”

See more about the Old Testament Library commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
A Continental Commentary
by Volkmar Fritz

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Kings commentary Fritz

Best for: students, pastors, teachers, professors, and scholars with training in Hebrew who can follow a technical commentary

Purpose: From the publisher: This series “makes leading critical biblical scholarship from German and French scholars available to the English-speaking world.

This series combines scholarly excellence with academic rigor to benefit pastors, students, and scholars of both the Old and New Testament.”

See more about the Continental Commentary series.


1 and 2 Kings
Abingdon Bible Commentary
by Gina Hens-Piazza

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Kings commentary Piazza

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The Abingdon Old Testament Commentaries series offers compact, critical commentaries on all the books of the Old Testament.”

See more about Abingdon commentaries.


1 and 2 Kings
New Beacon Bible Commentary
by Karen Strand Winslow

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Kings commentary Winslow

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New Beacon Bible Commentary provides 21st-century scholars, pastors, theological students, and laity an academically competent, readable commentary in the Wesleyan theological tradition.”

See more about New Beacon Bible Commentaries.


1 Kings
Concordia Commentary
by Walter Maier III

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Kings commentary Maier

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “A Theological Exposition of Sacred Scripture is written to enable pastors and teachers of the Word to proclaim the Gospel with greater insight, clarity, and faithfulness to the divine intent of the biblical text.”

See more about the Concordia Commentary series.


Classic Christian Commentaries


1 and 2 Kings
Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture
edited by Marco Conti

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Kings commentary Ancient Christian

Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers

Purpose: From the publisher: “The vast array of writings from the church fathers — including much that is available only in the ancient languages — have been combed for their comment on Scripture.”

See more about the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture series.


Also see:

Compare 75 different commentary series on the Bible Commentary Series Comparison Chart

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