Top Technical Bible Commentaries

Technical commentaries differ from other commentaries in a few ways: (1) They devote significant to space to discussion of technical matters related to the original languages of the Bible – Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. People who read and use technical commentaries have training in the original languages. (2) Technical commentaries often value interacting with the latest scholarship as it relates to technical matters, but they are also interested in the latest scholarship regarding topics such as authorship, date of composition, and original audience. (3) They mostly do include practical helps such as preaching tips, devotional insights, or application suggestions.

Since technical commentaries can cost more than other commentaries, and they can take more time to read and understand, it’s helpful to know what theological approach to Scripture the author adopts before an investment is made in a book. One way to summarize the positions on inerrancy, which are used in the list below, is: (1) absolute inerrancy: the author assumes the truthfulness of Scripture in all it affirms; (2) full inerrancy: the author assumes the truthfulness of Scripture in all it affirms, yet considers the possibility of errors on minor matters of history, science, and perhaps other non-doctrinal issues; (3) moderate-critical: the author assumes the total truthfulness of matters concerning faith and practice only; (4) liberal-critical: author believes Scripture can, and does, contain errors; author may also be critical about matters that Scripture affirms, doctrinal or otherwise.1

The labels below are color-coded for the purposes of grouping similar approaches.

The links go to Amazon.



New Testament Technical Commentaries



Matthew

W. Davies and D. Allison – International Critical Commentary | moderate-critical

Donald Hagner – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

John Nolland – New International Greek Testament Commentary | liberal-critical

Mark

Craig Evans – Word Biblical Commentaryfull inerrancy

R.T. France – New International Greek Testament Commentaryfull inerrancy

Robert Gundry – Eerdmansabsolute inerrancy

Luke

Darrell Bock – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

Francois Bovan – Hermeneialiberal-critical

John

Craig Keener – Hendrickson | absolute inerrancy

Andreas Kostenberger – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

Acts

C.K. Barrett – International Critical Commentary | moderate-critical

Darrell Bock – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

Ben Witherington – Eerdmans | absolute inerrancy

Romans

C.E.B. Cranfield – International Critical Commentary | moderate-critical

Douglas Moo – New International Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

Thomas Schreiner – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

1 Corinthians

Gordon Fee – New International Commentary on the New Testament | full inerrancy

Anthony Thiselton – New International Greek Testament Commentary | full inerrancy

2 Corinthians

Paul Barnett – New International Commentary on the New Testament | absolute inerrancy

Murray Harris – New International Greek Testament Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Galatians

F.F. Bruce – New International Greek Testament Commentary | full inerrancy

Richard Longenecker – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Ephesians

Ernest Best – International Critical Commentary | full inerrancy

Harold Hoehner – Bakerabsolute inerrancy

Philippians

Markus Bockmuehl – Hendricksonabsolute inerrancy

Gordon Fee – New International Commentary on the New Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Peter O’Brien – New International Greek Testament Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Colossians

Robert McL. Wilson – International Critical Commentaryliberal-critical

Peter O’Brien – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

1-2 Thessalonians

Abraham Malherbe – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Charles Wanamaker – New International Greek Testament Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

1-2 Timothy, Titus

Luke Johnson – Anchor Bible  | moderate-critical

I. Howard Marshall – International Critical Commentary | full inerrancy

William Mounce – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Phillip Towner – New International Commentary on the New Testament | full inerrancy

Philemon

Robert McL. Wilson – International Critical Commentaryliberal-critical

Peter O’Brien – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Hebrews

Luke Johnson – Old Testament Librarymoderate-critical

William Lane – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

James

Peter Davids – New International Greek Testament Commentary | full inerrancy

Patrick Hartin – Liturgical | moderate-critical

Luke Johnson – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

1 Peter

Karen Jobes – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testamentabsolute inerrancy

J. Ramsey Michaels – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

2 Peter-Jude

Richard Bauckham – Word Biblical Commentary | moderate-critical

1-3 John

I. Howard Marshall – New International Commentary on the New Testament | full inerrancy

Revelation

Robert Mounce – New International Commentary on the New Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Grant Osborne – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Stephen Smalley – InterVarsity Press | moderate-critical



Old Testament Technical Commentaries



Genesis

Victor Hamilton – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | absolute inerrancy

Gordon Wenham – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Exodus

Brevard Childs – Old Testament Library | liberal-critical

Cornelius Houtman – Historical Commentary on the Old Testament | liberal-critical

Leviticus

John Hartley – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Jacob Milgrom – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Numbers

Timothy Ashley – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Jacob Milgrom – Jewish Publication Society Torah Commentary | moderate-critical

Deuteronomy

Peter Craigie – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Gordon McConville – Apollos Old Testament Commentary | full inerrancy

Joshua

Marten Woudstra – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Judges

Robert Boling – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

Ruth

Frederic Bush – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Robert Hubbard – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | absolute inerrancy

1-2 Smauel

David Tsumura – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | absolute inerrancy

1 Samuel

Ralph Klein – Word Biblical Commentary | moderate-critical

2 Samuel

Kyle McCarter – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

1 Kings

Mordechai Cogan – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

2 Kings

T.R. Hobbs – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

1-2 Chronicles

Sara Japhet – Old Testament Library | moderate-critical

1 Chronicles

Roddy Braun – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Ralph Klein – Hermeneia | moderate-critical

Gary Knoppers – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

2 Chronicles

Raymond Dillard – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Ezra and Nehemiah

Ralph Klein – Abingdon | liberal-critical

H.G.M. Williamson – Word Biblical Commentary | moderate-critical

Esther

Frederic Bush – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Michael Fox – Eerdmans Critical Commentary | liberal-critical

Job

David Clines – Word Biblical Commentary | liberal-critical

John Hartley – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Psalms

P. Craigie, M. Tate, L. Allen – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

John Goldingay – Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalms | full inerrancy

F. Hossfeld and E. Zenger – Hermeneia | liberal-critical

Proverbs

Michael Fox – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

Tremper Longman – Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalmsabsolute inerrancy

Bruce Waltke – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Ecclesiastes

Thomas Kruger – Hermeneia | moderate-critical

Roland Murphy – Word Biblical Commentary | liberal-critical

Choon-Leong Seow – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Song of Songs

Duane Garrett – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Richard Hess – Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalmsabsolute inerrancy

Tremper Longman – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | absolute inerrancy

Isaiah

John Goldingay – International Critical Commentary | full inerrancy

Alec Motyer – InterVarsity Press | absolute inerrancy

John Oswalt – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Hugh Williamson – International Critical Commentary | moderate-critical

Jeremiah

Jack Lundbom – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Louis Stulman – Abgindon | moderate-critical

J.A. Thompson – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Lamentations

Paul House – Word Biblical Commentaryabsolute inerrancy

Iain Provan – Sheffieldabsolute inerrancy

Ezekiel

Leslie Allen – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Daniel Block – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy

Margaret Odell – Smyth and Helwys Bible Commentary | moderate-critical

Daniel

John Collins – Hermeneia | liberal-critical

John Goldingay – Word Biblical Commentary | full inerrancy

Hosea

A.A. MacIntosh – International Critical Commentary | moderate-critical

Joel

Leslie Allen – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Amos

Shalom Paul – Hermeneia | moderate-critical

Obadiah

Leslie Allen – New International Commentary on the Old Testament | full inerrancy

Paul Raabe – Anchor Bible | full inerrancy

Jonah

Jack Sasson – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

Micah

F. Andersen and D. Freeman – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Nahum

J. Roberts – Old Testament Library | liberal-critical

Klaas Spronk – Historical Commentary on the Old Testament | liberal-critical

Habakkuk

Francis Andersen – Anchor Bible | moderate-critical

Zephaniah

Marvin Sweeney – Hermeneia | moderate-critical

Haggai

Carol and Eric Meyers – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

Zechariah

Carol and Eric Meyers – Anchor Bible | liberal-critical

Malachi

Andrew Hill – Anchor Bibleabsolute inerrancy

Pieter Verhoef – New International Commentary on the Old Testamentabsolute inerrancy


Also see:

Best commentaries on John

Best commentaries on Hebrews


Footnotes:

1. The terms “absolute inerrancy” and “full inerrancy” are from Millard Erickson’s Christian Theology. P. 248.