Duane Garrett – Exodus Exegetical Commentary – Q & A

Duane A. Garrett (Ph.D., Baylor University) is the John R. Sampey Professor of Old Testament Interpretation and Professor of Biblical Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is also the author of the Exodus volume in the Kregel Exegetical Commentary series.

Exodus commentary Duane Garrett

Dr. Garrett has served on the faculty of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Bethel Seminary, Canadian Southern Baptist Seminary, Mid-America Baptist Seminary, and Korea Baptist Seminary.

His books include Song of Songs in the Word Biblical Commentary; A Modern Grammar for Classical Hebrew; Angels and the New Spirituality; Authority and Interpretation; and Hosea and Joel in the New American Commentary.

He also serves as the general editor for The Archaeology Study Bible from Zondervan Press.

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1. What previous research and/or personal interests led you to this project and helped prepare you to write this commentary on Exodus?

Exodus intrigued me because there are so many theories, some of them far-fetched, about the events surrounding the exodus event. Also, it seems to be overshadowed in evangelical theology by Genesis and Deuteronomy, even though it was, for the Israelites almost certainly the fountainhead of their biblical theology.

2. Who is the intended audience for this commentary? Would it benefit pastors? professors? students? lay Christians in the local church?

Hopefully, all of the above. For more scholarly interests, I try to deal with matters like the documentary hypothesis, the date of the exodus, etc., in a responsible, evangelical manner. I tried to make the book easy to read by putting technical Hebrew matters in the notes, not the main body. For preachers and Christians generally, I tried to give a lot of attention to the book’s theological significance and relationship to the New Testament.

3. What is unique about this commentary? What contribution does it make to studies of Exodus?

What I feel good about is that I think the commentary incorporates the Egyptian context of the exodus without engaging in fanciful or overstated theories, which I do think some evangelical writers give in to. I tried hard to balance a faithful and believing approach to the text with one that takes the evidence seriously. I also tried hard to integrate it theologically to the Christian faith.

4. What section or passage of this commentary was particularly memorable to research and write? Why?

I was especially intrigued by Exod 32–34 and its relationship to 2 Cor 3. This had a big impact on my own understanding of the Bible.

5. What personally edified you in writing this commentary, increasing your affections for Christ?

For that, I would say Exod 3–4 was the most important text.

6. Besides your commentary, what are your top recommended books (commentaries or otherwise) on Exodus?

Although I disagreed with parts of his treatment, I was impressed by the intellectual depth of Colin Humphreys’s, The Miracles of the Exodus. For commentaries, Doug Stuart’s Exodus is one of the best, although I again often took positions different from his.

7. What is next for you? What project are you currently working on? How can people follow your work and ministry?

My major project is a work called The Problem of the Old Testament, a kind of Old Testament theology. I am also currently writing a commentary on Jeremiah and Lamentations.

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