Bible commentaries on the Old Testament book of Joshua are listed below. The commentaries listed first are those that have received the best reviews. You will also find options for commentaries on Joshua 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. (See more about the scholars, pastors, ministries, and schools whose commentary reviews are being utilized.)
Best Reviewed Bible Commentaries on Joshua
The Book of Joshua (New International Commentary on the Old Testament) by Marten H. Woudstra
Reviews and Accolades:
Desiring God: #1 recommended commentary on Joshua
Tremper Longman: “very good exegetical analysis…excellent biblical-theological sense”
John H. Walton and Andrew E. Hill: “A good commentary from an evangelical perspective emphasizing the book’s theology.”
Keith Mathison: #3 ranked commentary on Joshua, “The body of the text is readable and insightful. Very helpful overall.”
Purpose: From the publisher: “All of the NICOT volumes combine superior scholarship, an evangelical view of Scripture as the Word of God, and concern for the life of faith today. Each volume features an extensive introduction treating the biblical book’s authorship, date, purpose, structure, and theology. The author’s own translation of the original Hebrew and verse-by-verse commentary follow. The commentary itself carefully balances coverage of technical matters with exposition of the biblical text’s theology and implications.” See more about the New International Commentary on the Old Testament series.
Joshua (Word Biblical Commentary) by Trent C. Butler
Reviews and Accolades:
Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “well-researched and thought-out commentary”
Keith Mathison: #5 ranked commentary on Joshua, “For those doing in-depth exegesis, however, it provides helpful information.”
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.
Joshua (Tyndale Old Testament Commentary) by Richard S. Hess
Reviews and Accolades:
Tremper Longman: 5 out of 5 stars, “one of the best commentaries on the book of Joshua…an adept interpreter”
Keith Mathison: #2 ranked commentary on Joshua, “The Tyndale commentary on Joshua is particularly good…written at an intermediate level and is accessible to all 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.
Joshua (New American Commentary) by David M. Howard, Jr.
Reviews and Accolades:
Tremper Longman: 4 out of 5 stars, “well written, well researched, and well thought-out…[Howard] is quite good at pointing out theological themes”
Keith Mathison: #3 ranked commentary on Joshua, “a truly helpful commentary”
Purpose: From the publisher: “The New American Commentary is introduced to bridge the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This new 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.
Joshua (Focus on the Bible) by Dale Ralph Davis
Reviews and Accolades:
Keith Mathison: #1 ranked commentary on Joshua, “non-technical, beginner-intermediate level works, but they offer more insight into these biblical books than many commentaries two or three times their size”
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 speciality 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.
Joshua (New International Version Application Commentary) by Robert L. Hubbard Jr.
Reviews and Accolades:
Tremper Longman: 5 out of 5 stars, “opens up the theological teaching and contemporary significance of Joshua”
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. These are commentaries, not popular expositions. They are works of reference, not devotional literature.” See more about the NIV Application Commentary series.
More Expository Commentaries
Joshua by J. Gordon Harris (Understanding the Bible Commentary Series)
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. They present 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.” See more about the Understanding the Bible Commentary series.
The Message of Joshua (The Bible Speaks Today) by David G. Firth
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.
Joshua (Apollos Old Testament Commentary) by Pekka Pitkänen
Best for: expository preachers, Bible college and seminary students, church elders and teachers, experienced Bible readers
Purpose: From the publisher: “The Abingdon New Testament Commentaries series offers compact, critical commentaries on the writings of the New Testament. These commentaries are written with special attention to the needs and interests of theology students, but they will also be useful for students in upper-level college or university settings, as well as for pastors and other church leaders.” See more about the Apollos Old Testament Commentary series.
Joshua (The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Revised Edition) by Helene Dallaire
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 – namely, that the primary aim of the exegete is to make clear the meaning of the text at the time and in the circumstances of its writing.” See more about the Expositor’s Bible Commentary series.
Joshua (Two Horizons Commentary Series) by Gordon McConville and Stephen Williams
Purpose: From the publisher: “Two features distinguish The Two Horizons Old Testament Commentary series: theological exegesis and theological reflection…The result is a paragraph-by-paragraph engagement with the text that is deliberately theological in focus.” See more about the Two Horizons Bible commentary series.
Joshua (Concordia Commentary Series) by Adolf L. Harstad
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.”
Joshua (New Beacon Bible Commentary) by Stephen Lennox
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. Each volume features: Contemporary Scholarship from notable experts in the Wesleyan theological tradition. Convenient introductory material for each book of the Bible, which includes information on authorship, date, history, audience, sociological/cultural issues, purpose, literary features, theological themes, hermeneutical issues, and more.”
Reading Joshua (Reading the Old Testament) by John C.H. Laughlin
Purpose: From the publisher: “Edited by Mark E. Biddle, Russell T. Cherry Professor of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond, the Reading the Old Testament commentary series presents cutting-edge biblical research in accessible language.”
Joshua College Press by Mark Reise
Purpose: From the publisher: “College Press NIV Commentary Series is formatted with a verse-by-verse explanation of the text. It was developed for both the scholar and the average Bible student. The College Press NIV Commentary Series is the only full commentary set in print from the Restoration Movement.”
Joshua (Anchor Commentary Series) by Robert G. Boling
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.” The series “vigorously pursues the goal of bringing to a wide audience the most important new ideas, the latest research findings, and the clearest possible analysis of the Bible.” See more about the Anchor Bible Commentary series.
Joshua (The Old Testament Library) by Richard D. Nelson
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.
Classic Christian Commentaries
Joshua (Ironside Expository Commentaries) by H.A. Ironside
Purpose: H.A. Ironside (1876-1951) was an internationally acclaimed Bible teacher and preacher, as well as the author of more than sixty books. His writings include addresses or commentaries on the entire New Testament, all of the Old Testament prophetic books, and a great many volumes on other biblical topics. For eighteen of his fifty years of ministry, Dr. Ironside was pastor of the historic Moody Memorial Church in Chicago, Ill.
Gleanings in Joshua by A.W. Pink
Purpose: From the publisher: “Gleanings in Exodus contains exhaustive studies that bring out deep theological and spiritual truths from the Scriptures. This is an excellent resource book.”
Joshua (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture) edited by John R. Franke
Purpose: From the publisher: “The ACCS is a post-critical revival of the early commentary tradition known as the glossa ordinaria, a text artfully elaborated with ancient and authoritative reflections and insights. 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. From these results, scholars with a deep knowledge of the fathers and a heart for the church have hand selected material for each volume, shaping, annotating, and introducing it to today’s readers. Each portion of commentary has been chosen for its salient insight, its rhetorical power, and its faithful representation of the consensual exegesis of the early church.”
- Best Old Testament Commentaries – index
- Joshua Commentaries for Pastors – focus on application