Darrell Bock – Luke Commentary – Q & A

luke commentary darrell bock

Darell L. Bock is the author of the Luke volume in the Baker Exegetical Commentary series. Dr. Bock (University of Aberdeen, Ph.D) is Executive Director of Cultural Engagement and Senior Research Professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary.

Dr. Bock has earned recognition as a Humboldt Scholar (Tübingen University in Germany), is the author of over 40 books, including highly-praised commentaries on Luke and Acts in the BECNT series, Luke in the NIVAC series, and Ephesians in the Tyndale New Testament Commentary series.

Dr. Bock was president of the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) for 2000–2001, is a consulting editor for Christianity Today magazine, and serves on the boards of Wheaton College and Chosen People Ministries. His articles appear in leading publications. He is often an expert for the media on New Testament issues.

Dr. Bock is elder emeritus at Trinity Fellowship Church in Dallas.

7 Questions on Luke in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament Series

Dr. Bock graciously agreed to answer my questions about his Luke commentary. Readers will learn about how this commentary came to be, why it’s unique among other Luke commentaries, and what personally affected Dr. Bock as he wrote.

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

I had done my dissertation work on the Use of the OT in Luke-Acts for Christology when I agreed to do this commentary. I had spent years in these two volumes already. There were very few excellent commentaries on both of these books written by the same author. I have always felt Luke was not sufficiently appreciated as a gospel. So this was an opportunity to address this.

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

Anyone interested in serious study of this gospel. Although there are many technical points, I tried to write about them in such a way that anyone interested in these issues could follow the conversation about them. It was aimed primarily at those who would teach, preach or lead bible studies on this gospel.

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

It is meticulous in how Luke compares to the other synoptic gospels. This extends down to all differences of wording. This actually lengthened the commentary by about one third. It also drew upon careful work on how the OT informed the message of the gospel and the understanding fo Jesus.

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

The central section of Luke comprises Luke 9-19. It is an enigma to many, yet is loaded with key teaching from Jesus, including many parables unique to Luke. Working through this section in detail and looking at how it fits together helps to open up the gospel and its overall message.

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

Well, Luke has more balance between activity and teaching than any other gospel. You see the character and values of Jesus and his ministry clearly in this gospel. To study it up close helps to round you out as a person who seeks to walk with God.

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

There are fine commentaries by Joel Green [NICNT] and Howard Marshall on Luke [NIGTC]. They are very different. Green focuses on the narrative flow, while Marshall has many details about the Greek text. I have done a biblical theology on Luke-Acts that is a synthesis of much of what is seen in the gospel.

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

I am working on a commentary on Ephesians for the Tyndale Series for IVP which is being updated. I also am working on editing some books on Israel and her role in Scripture as a way of making sense of the Middle East. Finally I am at work on the Table podcasts the Hendricks Center at Dallas Theological Seminary produces. This look at issues of God and culture cover a full range of issues about how to apply our faith to life. For those see https://voice.dts.edu.

Own Darrell Bock’s Luke commentary

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More about Luke in the BECNT series


“This excellent commentary on the Lucan Gospel is massive, but well written, informative, and judicious. . . . It should be a boon for pastors, priests, seminarians, and all educated general readers interested in the interpretation of the Gospels. Bock has read widely, asks the right questions, and gives a balanced answer in his interpretation of this Gospel.” ~ Joseph A. Fitzmyer, SJ, Catholic University of America

“Its comprehensive discussions of the text and its judicious references to contemporary scholarship ensure that both the seminary student and the mature scholar find helpful and fresh material to enhance their understanding of the Gospel.” ~ I. Howard Marshall, University of Aberdeen

“Each section of the text is addressed from a clearly organized series of perspectives: overview, sources and historicity, translation, exegesis and exposition, summary, and additional notes. If there is such a thing as a user-friendly two-volume commentary on a single book, this is it!” ~ Craig L. Blomberg, Denver Seminary

From the publisher

In the first of two volumes on the Gospel of Luke, Darrell L. Bock offers students of the New Testament a substantive yet highly accessible commentary. With extensive research and thoughtful chapter-by-chapter exegesis, Bock leads readers through all aspects of the third Gospel–sociological, historical, and theological. The result is a guide that clearly and meaningfully brings the first part of this important New Testament book to life for contemporary readers.

Bock’s two volumes on the Gospel of Luke are the inaugural volumes of the acclaimed BECNT series. As with all BECNT volumes, Luke features the author’s own translation of the Greek text, detailed interaction with the original text, and a user-friendly design. This informative, balanced commentary also includes extensive introductory notes. It admirably achieves the dual aims of the series–academic sophistication with pastoral sensitivity and accessibility–making it a useful tool for students, professors, and pastors.

Daniel Isaiah Joseph

Daniel's seminary degree is in Exegetical Theology. He was a pastor for 10 years. As a professor, he has taught Bible and theology courses at two Christian universities. Please see his About page for details.

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