Psalms Commentaries for Pastors

Psalms commentaries for pastors are listed below. Some were written in the traditional commentary style, while others read more like printed sermons. This kind of Bible commentary is helpful to preachers and teachers, yet can be used by lay Christians such as those who are leading Bible studies or small groups. Since this kind of Bible commentary emphasizes application, the volumes below are also great as devotional aides.

To see the top Psalms commentaries in any style — e.g. preaching focus, theological insight, exposition, technical, social background, original language — please follow the link provided.



Bible Commentaries for Preaching and Teaching



Psalms 1-72 (New International Version Application Commentary) by Gerald H. Wilson


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tremper Longman: 5 out of 5 stars, “strong in all three sections of the series…has much value, especially for ministers”

Keith Mathison: #2 ranked commentary on Psalms, “The NIVAC series is a mixed bag, but Gerald Wilson’s initial volume on the Psalms is one of the standouts.”

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. These are commentaries, not popular expositions. They are works of reference, not devotional literature.” See more about the NIV Application Commentary series.



Psalms 73-150 (New International Version Application Commentary) by W. Dennis Tucker and Jamie A. Grant


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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. These are commentaries, not popular expositions. They are works of reference, not devotional literature.” See more about the NIV Application Commentary series.



Psalms (Interpretation: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching) by James L. Mays


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Reviews and Accolades:

Tremper Longman: 5 out of 5 stars, “focuses on the literary expression and theological message of the Psalms”

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. The purpose of this series is rather to provide a third kind of resource, a commentary which presents the integrated result of historical and theological work with the biblical text.” See more about the Interpretation Bible commentary series.



Psalms 1-72 and 73-150 (The Preacher’s Commentary) by Donald M. Williams


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Reviews and Accolades:

Keith Mathison: #3 ranked commentary on Psalms, “This is a non-technical, highly readable commentary, with a strongly devotional and practical approach. It is well worth consulting.”

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

Purpose: From the publisher: “The New King James Bible has been chosen for the Preacher’s Commentary because it combines with integrity the beauty of language, underlying Hebrew and Greek textual basis, and thought-flow of the 1611 King James Version…Readers who are more comfortable with another translation can readily find the parallel passage by means of the chapter and verse reference at the end of each passage being exposited. The paragraphs of exposition combine fresh insights to the Scripture, application, rich illustrative material, and innovative ways of utilizing the vibrant truth for his or her own life and for the challenge of communicating it with vigor and vitality.”



Psalms 1-72, 73-150 (Teach the Text Commentary Series) by C. Hassell Bullock


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

Purpose: From the publisher: The Teach the Text series utilizes “the best of biblical scholarship” and provides “the information a pastor needs to communicate the text effectively. By keeping the discussion of each carefully selected preaching unit to six pages of focused commentary, the volumes in this series allow pastors to quickly grasp the big idea and key themes of each passage of Scripture. The text and its meaning are made clear, and sections dedicated to effectively teaching and illustrating the text help pastors prepare to preach.” See more about the Teach the Text Bible commentary series.



Psalms (Preaching the Word) by James Johnston


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “For years, Crossway’s Preaching the Word commentary series has helped pastors, preachers, and anyone who teaches God’s Word to better interpret and apply the message of the Bible. Under the careful editorial oversight of experienced pastor and best-selling author R. Kent Hughes, this series is known for its commitment to biblical authority, its pastoral tone and focus, and its overall accessibility.” See more about the Preaching the Word commentary series.



Psalms (Zondervan Illustrated Bible Background Commentary) by John Hilber


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

Purpose: From the publisher: This series “walks you verse by verse through all the books of the New Testament. It’s like slipping on a set of glasses that lets you read the Bible through the eyes of a first-century reader! Discoveries await you that will snap the world of the New Testament into gripping immediacy. Things that seem mystifying, puzzling, or obscure will take on tremendous meaning when you view them in their ancient context. You’ll deepen your understanding of the teachings of Jesus.” See more about the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary series.



Psalms (Holman Old Testament Commentary) by Steven J. Lawson


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “No other reference series gets to the heart of the Old Testament as efficiently as the Holman Old Testament Commentary. When a reader’s time allows, the series offers a detailed interpretation based on the popular New International Version text. When time is short, it delivers an essential understanding of the Old Testament with unsurpassed clarity and convenience.”



Psalms (Wesleyan Bible Study Commentary) by Stephen J. Lennox


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “An excellent resource for personal study, and especially helpful for those involved in the teaching ministries of the church, the Wesleyan Bible Study Commentary series will encourage and promote life change in believers by applying God’s authoritative truth in relevant, practical ways. Written in an easy-to-follow format, you will enjoy studying Scripture insights that are faithful to the Wesleyan-Armenian perspective.”



Psalms Commentaries by Well-Known Pastors



The Treasury of David by Charles Spurgeon


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the “Prince of Preachers,” composed and polished The Treasury of David over the span of nearly half his ministry. This incomparable commentary and omnibus on the Psalms has been prized by Christians ever since.”



Psalms: An Expositional Commentary by James Montgomery Boice


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “James Montgomery Boice (1938-2000) was senior pastor of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was also president and cofounder of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, the parent organization of The Bible Study Hour on which Boice was a speaker for more than thirty years…Boice has created a unique blend of scripture insight, rich devotional application, and vivid illustration in this commentary.”



Psalms (Thru the Bible) by J. Vernon McGee


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

Purpose: From the publisher: “Radio messages from J. Vernon McGee delighted and enthralled listeners for years with simple, straightforward language and clear understanding of the Scripture. Now enjoy his personable, yet scholarly, style in a 60-volume set of commentaries that takes you from Genesis to Revelation with new understanding and insight.”



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