Word Biblical Commentary (WBC) – Old Testament: Reviews, Purpose, Volumes

The Purpose of the Word Biblical Commentary Series

word biblical commentary
Old Testament in the WBC volumes have a black and marine blue cover

From the publisher: “The Word Biblical Commentary delivers the best in biblical scholarship, from the leading scholars of our day who share a commitment to Scripture as divine revelation. This series 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. These widely acclaimed commentaries serve as exceptional resources for the professional theologian and instructor, the seminary or university student, the working minister, and everyone concerned with building theological understanding from a solid base of biblical scholarship.”

The Contents of Each Commentary Volume

  • Introduction—covers issues pertaining to the whole book, including context, date, authorship, composition, interpretive issues, purpose, and theology.
  • word biblical commentaryPericope Bibliography—a helpful resource containing the most important works that pertain to each particular pericope.
  • Translation—the author’s own translation of the biblical text, reflecting the end result of exegesis and attending to Hebrew and Greek idiomatic usage of words, phrases, and tenses, yet in reasonably good English.
  • Notes—the author’s notes to the translation that address any textual variants, grammatical forms, syntactical constructions, basic meanings of words, and problems of translation.
  • Form/Structure/Setting—a discussion of redaction, genre, sources, and tradition as they concern the origin of the pericope, its canonical form, and its relation to the biblical and extra-biblical contexts in order to illuminate the structure and character of the pericope. Rhetorical or compositional features important to understanding the passage are also introduced here.
  • Comment—verse-by-verse interpretation of the text and dialogue with other interpreters, engaging with current opinion and scholarly research.
  • Explanation—brings together all the results of the discussion in previous sections to expose the meaning and intention of the text at several levels:
    • (1) within the context of the book itself
    • (2) its meaning in the OT or NT
    • (3) its place in the entire canon
    • (4) theological relevance to broader OT or NT issues
  • General Bibliography—occurring at the end of each volume, this extensive bibliographycontains all sources used anywhere in the commentary.

Old Testament Volumes in the Word Biblical Commentary Series

Zondervan, owned by HarperCollins, currently publishes the WBC series, after buying it from its previous publisher, Thomas Nelson, in 2011.

Links go to Amazon.

Wenham, Gordon J. (1987). Genesis 1-15. (Volume: 1)

Wenham, Gordon J. (1994). Genesis 16-50. (Volume: 2)

word biblical commentaryDurham, John I. (1987). Exodus. (Volume: 3)

Hartley, John E. (1992). Leviticus. (Volume: 4)

Budd, Phillip J. (1984). Numbers. (Volume: 5)

Christensen, Duane L. (1991). Deuteronomy 1-11. (Volume: 6a)

Christensen, Duane L. (2002). Deuteronomy 12-34. (Volume: 6b)

Butler, Trent C. (2014). Joshua 1-12. 2nd ed. (Volume: 7a)

Butler, Trent C. (2014). Joshua 13-24. 2nd ed.. (Volume: 7b)

Replaced Butler, Trent C. (1983). Joshua. (Volume: 7)

Armerding, Carl E. (2006). Judges. (Volume: 8)

word biblical commentaryBush, Fredric W. (1996). Ruth and Esther. (Volume: 9)

Klein, Ralph W. (1983). 1 Samuel. (Volume: 10)

Anderson, A. A. (1989). 2 Samuel. (Volume: 11)

De Vries, Simon J. (1985). 1 Kings. (Volume: 12)

Hobbs, T. R. (1986). 2 Kings. (Volume: 13)

Braun, Roddy L. (1986). 1 Chronicles. (Volume: 14)

Dillard, Raymond B. (2010). 2 Chronicles. (Volume: 15)

Williamson, Hugh G. M. (1986). Ezra-Nehemiah. (Volume: 16)

Clines, David J. A. (1989). Job 1-20. (Volume: 17)

Clines, David J. A. (2006). Job 21-37. (Volume: 18a)

Clines, David J. A. (2015). Job 38-42. 2nd ed. (Volume: 18b)

Craigie, Peter C. (2010). Psalms 1-50. 2nd ed. (Volume: 19)

Tate, Marvin E. (1991). Psalms 51-100. (Volume: 20)

Allen, Leslie C. (1983). Psalms 101-150. (Volume: 21)

Murphy, Roland (1998). Proverbs. (Volume: 22)

Murphy, Roland (1992). Ecclesiastes. (Volume: 23a)

Garrett, Duane; House, Paul R. (2004). Song of Songs and Lamentations. (Volume: 23b)

Watts, John D. W. (2005). Isaiah 1-33. 2nd ed. (Volume: 24)

Watts, John D. W. (2005). Isaiah 34-66. 2nd ed. (Volume: 25)

Craigie, Peter C.; Kelley, Page H.; Drinkard Jr., Joel F. (1991). Jeremiah 1-25. (Volume: 26)

Keown, Gerald L.; Scalise, Pamela J.; Smothers, Thomas G. (1995). Jeremiah 26-52. (Volume: 27)

Brownlee, William H. (1994). Ezekiel 1-19. (Volume: 28)

Allen, Leslie C. (1990). Ezekiel 20-48. (Volume: 29)

Goldingay, John E. (1989). Daniel. (Volume: 30)

Stuart, Douglas (1987). Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah and Jonah. (Volume: 31)

Smith, Ralph L. (1984). Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Nahum & Malachi. (Volume: 32)


Also see:

Bible Commentary Series (index)

New Testament commentaries (index)

Old Testament commentaries (index)