New International Commentary on the Old Testament (NICOT)

The New International Commentary on the Old Testament is a series that Eerdman’s Publishing Company has printed since the 1970’s. Its commentaries have been well-reviewed for their evangelical theology and overall helpfulness to pastors. Roger Nicole mentioned the NICNT series in Christianity Today magazine in an article title, “What Evangelicalism Has Accomplished” in the last half of the twentieth century, which highlights the high-quality biblical scholarship found in its commentaries.1

new international commentary on the old testament coverSeveral of the volumes in the series have been well-reviewed by renown scholars and theological journals and are considered top in their subject area, such Victor Hamilton’s Genesis commentary and John Oswalt’s Isaiah commentary. The Old Testament series editor is currently Robert L. Hubbard Jr., professor of biblical literature at North Park Theological Seminary, who authored the Ruth commentary in the series. The New International Commentary on the New Testament has a different editor, Joel B. Green.

Theologically, though some volumes reflect a moderately critical approach to Scripture, the commentaries in the NICNT series are committed to evangelical thinking. The series was originally distinctly Reformed.2 However, under the editorship of F.F. Bruce, “the intentionally Reformed perspective of the series” began to subside.3 As an example of this shift, Arminian Methodists, I. Howard Marshall (The Letters of John) and, New Testament editor, Joel B. Green (The Gospel of Luke), have contributed well-reviewed commentaries to the series.

NICOT volumes are intended for pastors and professors. Though authors provide their own English translations, and work from the Hebrew, the commentaries are not considered technical. Most volumes are accessible to bible-school or seminary-trained pastors, yet some reviewers have noted that recently published editions are heavily focused on scholarship, such as Mark Boda’s Zechariah commentary, which is almost 900 pages.

Example Reviews of the New International Commentary on the Old Testament

The Southwestern Journal of Theology, an academic journal published by Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote that Victor Hamilton’s volume on Genesis

…receives the award for best-all-around…The New International Commentary on the Old Testament (NICOT) is the best all-around Old Testament commentary set for most pastors, students, and lay people who are serious about Bible Study.

Hamilton’s volume is one of the best-reviewed Genesis commentaries on Best Bible Commentaries.

The journal, Bibliotheca Sacra, a theological journal published by Dallas Theological Seminary, wrote about John Oswalt’s Isaiah volume,

The evangelical community should welcome the appearance of this fine commentary… A thoroughly evangelical work characterized by insightful exegetical and theological observations. It is clearly the best commentary available on Isaiah, one that should be in the library of every serious student of Isaiah’s prophecy.

Oswalt’s volume is one the best-reviewed Isaiah commentaries on Best Bible Commentaries.

Iain Provan, the Marshall Sheppard Professor of Biblical Studies at Regent College, wrote about Mark Boda’s Zechariah commentary,

This fine exposition of Zechariah represents a most welcome addition to commentary on this book. Mark Boda has a great eye both for the detail of the text and for its intertextuality.

Please see Best Bible Commentaries’ seven-question interview with Mark Boda on this volume.

Commentary Volumes in the NICOT Series — Original and Revised

The preface found in each commentary volumes explains,

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.4

The Pentateuch

Links go to Amazon.

Hamilton, Victor P. The Book of Genesis: Chapters 1-17 | Published: 1990

Hamilton, Victor P. The Book of Genesis: Chapters 18-50 | Published: 1995

Wenham, Gordon J. The Book of Leviticus | Published: 1979

Ashley, Timothy R. The Book of Numbers | Published: 1993

Craigie, Peter C. The Book of Deuteronomy | Published: 1976

The History Books

Woudstra, Marten H. The Book of Joshua | Published: 1981

Webb, Barry G. The Book of Judges | Published: 2012

Hubbard, Robert L. The Book of Ruth | Published: 1988

Tsumura, David Toshio. The First Book of Samuel | Published: 2007

Fensham, F. Charles. The Books of Ezra and Nehemiah | Published: 1982

The Wisdom Literature

Hartley, John E. The Book of Job | Published: 1988

DeClaisse-Walford, Nancy L.; Jacobson, Rolf; Tanner, Beth. The Book of Psalms. | Published: 2014

Waltke, Bruce K. The Book of Proverbs: Chapters 1-15. | Published: 2004

Waltke, Bruce K. The Book of Proverbs: Chapters 15-31. | Published: 2005

Longman III, Tremper. The Book of Ecclesiastes. | Published: 1998

Longman III, Tremper. Song of Songs. | Published: 2001

The Prophets

Oswalt, John N. The Book of Isaiah, Chapters 1-39. | Published: 1986

Oswalt, John N. The Book of Isaiah: Chapters 40-66. | Published: 1998

Thompson, J. A. The Book of Jeremiah. | Published: 1980

Block, Daniel I. The Book of Ezekiel: Chapters 1-24. | Published: 1997

Block, Daniel I. The Book of Ezekiel: Chapters 25-48. | Published: 1998

Dearman, John Andrew. The Book of Hosea. | Published: 2010

Allen, Leslie C. The Books of Joel, Obadiah, Jonah and Micah. | Published: 1976

Robertson, O. Palmer. The Books of Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah. | Published: 1990

Jacobs, Mignon R. The Books of Haggai and Malachi. | Published: 2018

Replaced Verhoef, Pieter A. The Books of Haggai and Malachi. | Published: 1987

Boda, Mark J. The Book of Zechariah. | Published: 2016



Footnotes:

  1. https://web.archive.org/web/20090218140843/http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/1996/september16/6ta030.html?start=2 (accessed 3/4/19)
  2. From the “General Forward” found in the earliest volumes in the series, e.g. The Gospel of Luke by Norval Geldenhuys, published in 1951.
  3. From the “Editor’s Preface” found in the latest volumes in the series, e.g. The Gospel of Luke (revised edition) by Joel B. Green, published in 1997.
  4. https://www.eerdmans.com/Products/CategoryCenter.aspx?CategoryId=SE!NICNT