Please Bid: A New Commentary on Holy Scripture Including the Apocrypha

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Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Posted: Sun, Mar 20 2016 7:48 PM

A New Commentary on Holy Scripture Including the Apocrypha

Here is a sample from my hard cover edition. Please note I have added in modern notation.

VI. i. Our Lord leaves the shore of the lake to teach among the villages, and first in His own home Nazareth (Mark 1:9), in the hill country some twenty-five miles distant from Capernaum. Only here and in Mark 2:15 are the disciples said to be ' following ' our Lord, and we ought probably to take the word quite literally: later on the Twelve form one company with our Lord, but here a larger number, perhaps a much larger number, is straggling after Him at intervals.

 2. As at Capernaum (Mark 1.22), in the Decapolis (Mark 7.37), and at Jerusalem (Mark 11.18), the result of Jesus' teaching and miracles was a general feeling of  ‘amazement’ ( ‘astonished ' of AV and RV is not in our modern use of it a strong enough word): everywhere else than at Nazareth this amazement implied at least respect, if not more, but on the stage of His own earlier life it only issued in disparaging comments on His upbringing and His surroundings. He had lived as an artisan by manual labour: His brothers could be counted by name, and doubtless still made their livelihood in the same or a similar way. The words of wisdom, he deeds of power, with which common report credited Him, seemed impressive enough: but instead of feeling any pride that a fellow-townsman had made so great a mark in the larger centres of population round them, they felt that 'they knew too much about His origins to regard Him as anything more than "what they had known Him all along to be.

 3. the carpenter : so the pagan philosopher  Celsus   in   the   2nd   century

mocked at Jesus as a carpenter, and the pagan orator Libanius in the 4th asked ‘What is the carpenter's son doing just now ?' But God ' chose the weak things et the world.'    It is  true that manual labour was not regarded among the Jews a  thing derogatory in itself  (cf.  St. Pau's  case,   Acts 18:3);   but  a  teacher  of religion should ' have little business, and be busied  in the Law,'  and  Jesus  had worked regularly at His trade. 

the son of Mary: obviously Joseph was dead.

 brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon. ' Brother ' in what sense ? (1)In the same sense that He was ' son of Mary,' i.e. that James and the rest were sons of Joseph and Mary, and younger brothers of our Lord ? (2) In the same sense that He is called son of Joseph in Matthew and Luke, i.e. that they were sons of Joseph and a former wife, and elder ' putative ' brothers of our Lord ? (3) In the sense that brother is loosely used for cousin, i.e. that they were really blood-relations of our Lord, being sons of another Mary, sister to the Blessed Virgin and wife of Alphseus (identified with Clopas), and therefore His first cousins ? This third view was an invention of St. Jerome's, and a very ingenious one: but it was never heard of before him. (4) In the sense that the ' brethren ' were putative cousins of our Lord on Joseph's side, being sons of 'Man,- the mother of James and Joses' (Mark 15.40), and her husband Clopas (John 19.25) ? The 2nd-century writer Hegesippus (as cited by Eus., Hist. Eccl., iii, 11; 32, §§ 3, 4) tells us that Clopas was brother of Joseph and that the Symeon who was chosen as a relation of our Lord's to be bishop of Jerusalem after the death of James was his son. This theory, propounded by Dom John Chapman, is even more ingenious than St. Jerome's, for it combines in a very simple way a good many historical data. But neither the James and Joses of Mark 15.40, nor Symeon the bishop, are called ' brothers ' of the Lord, nor are we any nearer to a sufficient ground for cousins being known as brothers. On the whole problem see the note appended to the commentary on the Epistle of James. The two first views can both claim support in early tradition, but neither of them in tradition so early as to be decisive on that ground alone. This passage in St. Mark contributes nothing either way, save the impression suggested by 4: see note there.

 James is ' brother of the Lord' in Gal 1.19: Judas is 'brother of James' in Jude 1; compare the story of his grandsons being brought before Domitian as members of the royal house of David, which Eusebius (H.E., iii, 20) derived from Hegesippus―even Domitian could not regard the horny-handed countrymen haled before him as potential rivals. Of Joses (Joseph) and Simon we know nothing.

 4. among his own kin. According to John 7.3-5 ‘neither did his brethren believe on him,' though James at least was a believer at the time of the Resurrection (1Cor 15.7), and apparently the others also (Act 1.14). If our Lord was younger than His brothers (see on 3), we can more easily understand their early attitude (cf.   1Sa 16. 6-12, 17.28).

5. he could do there no mighty work AV and RV rightly. When Mark relates the inability of the disciples to cast out the dumb spirit (Mark 9.39), he uses a different and stronger word, rightly rendered ' were not able ' in RV. Here the word is the ordinary Greek for ' to be able,' which in Mark has got weakened down to an auxiliary like our ' can ' and ' could.' It was not a physical inability to work cures, but a moral inability to cure without faith on the part of the recipient. So 9 39 ' could easily speak ill of me.'


5. laid his hands :   cf.  Mark 5.237.32 where our Lord is begged to ' lay his hand ' or ' hands ' for healing on Jairus's daughter and on the man who was deaf and dumb. It was the regular outward sign of benediction in the Old Testament, and the regular outward sign of every sacramental rite in the early Church (see Gore, Church and Ministry, note G, edition of 1919, 341 ff.), of course with the accompaniment of prayer.

6b-13. he went round about the villages teaching: alone for the last time in Galilee, for the Twelve are now sent in pairs to begin the work for which He had appointed them (Mark 3.1415). They had been with Him, they return to Him (Mark 6.30), and they were, it seems, continuously with Him from Matk 8.1 onwards to the close of the Ministry: but here He sends them out ' on their own,' so to say, to develop the work of His mission to their Galilaean fellow-countrymen, and to gain an experience which would be a training for wider journeys in the future.

8, 9. They were to take poverty as their bride in as literal a sense as that in which St. Francis, after the example of the Master, sent out the first Franciscans as missionaries: without food or receptacle for food, without even copper coins for money, without more than one chiton (contrast the use of the plural in the case of Caiaphas; see note on Mark 14.63), with nothing but wooden sandals for foot-gear ― Roman readers would easily have understood sandalia as excluding boots or shoes―and carrying nothing but a walking-stick.

10. house, and 11 place. Mark's report of our Lord's charge to the Twelve is strictly germane to the mission to the villages   of   Galilee.     Both   the   other Synoptists give a more general scope to their report, and introduce ' cities.'

10. unto them : that is, ' against them,' as in Mark 13.9: see on Mark 1.44.

12. repent: as our Lord had preached repentance (Mark 1.15).

13. anointed with oil: the only place in the Gospels (save in Luke's parable of the Good Samaritan, Luke 10.34) where the use of oil for the sick is mentioned, but compare, of course, James 5.1415, which gives doubtless a close parallel to the method of the Twelve in their acts of healing.


Praised by C. S. Lewis as “Probably the best single book of modern comment on the Bible,” A New Commentary on Holy Scripture Including the Apocrypha focuses on the spiritual understanding and application of the Scriptures. …Each author’s contributions reflect their unique views, often cross-referenced to one another where considerable differences of opinion arise. The text also includes clarifying footnotes by the editors. While the commentary offers some scientific and archaeological aspects, it’s the depth of its scriptural commentary that makes this a critical resource for any biblical scholar.


One Reviewer stated:

The aim of all the contributors seems to be to interpret  the scripture in a way to build up faith as well as to furnish information. A massive volume in content though not unwieldy to handle for all it's sixteen hundred pages. Preachers and teachers of today are fortunate to obtain for a few dollars such a commentary as this one. It is critical without being hypercritical or destructive. The appearance of this commentary on the Bible in a single volume has been perhaps the chief event in the theological world during the past few months. There will be thousands whom it will lead for the first time to a systematic study of the Bible. It is really a library of information. It ought to be added that this volume is a marvel of cheapness, when one considers the high scholarship it embodies and the number of pages it contains.


I hope this spurs some people on to give this  a try. To agree with the 1928 reviews above for a few dollars this volume will provide you interpretation to build up your faith and furnish you with information. I think it will be a valuable resource for everyone's faithlife library.


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Deacon Steve | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 5:03 AM

I placed my bid over the past Christmas season.  Hopefully this will help in gaining some momentum.   Thanks for posting, Dan.

Posts 621
Dave Thawley | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 5:20 AM

Thanks for Pushing this Dan. I have already placed a bid on it (again over last Christmas) as it does look a great item. 

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Bruce Dunning | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 5:31 AM

Like Steve and Dave I bid on this last Christmas too. The challenge is to attract new bidders.

Using adventure and community to challenge young people to continually say "yes" to God

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Erwin Stull, Sr. | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 5:50 AM

My bid is in. Thanks for posting. Some of these resources go unnoticed until attention is drawn to them.

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GaoLu | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 6:06 AM

I'm in.  I think this is worth bidding on.

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Fasil | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 6:16 AM

I'm in since April 2014. Let's move it to production.

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Glenn Crouch | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 6:35 AM

Placed a bid quite some time ago :)

Pastor Glenn Crouch
St Paul's Lutheran Church
Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Western Australia

Posts 277
Ergatees | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 8:44 AM

A New Commentary on Holy Scripture Including the Apocrypha

I bit on the bid. Looks like a good offering for $8.00.Thanks a lot, Dan.


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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 10:52 AM

I bit on the bid. Looks like a good offering for $8.00.

Actually, it looks like a steal for $8 - but that has about 30% progress and thus may never see the light. I can see I bid $12 around Christmas (which has near 0%, so it seems a futile idea to engineer a second price point) - if all that bid $8 were in at $24, the product would be in production already.

In the current picture, we'll need a lot of new bidders. So thanks to all who keep it visible. 

Running Logos 8 latest beta version on Win 10

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Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 11:47 AM

It is very difficult to know why somethings grab some peoples attention and why other things don't. To me it feels like a no brainer... Yes it is older but it offers enough to still make it of value. Historically Logos has had such a poor coverage of the Apocrypha that to me anything including it is a valuable addition to ones library. Comparing it to other classic commentaries, this feels equally as useful as the classic JFB if not perhaps a bit more so. If we were talking some huge price I could full understand people not wanting to take a risk but as inexpensive as this is and with FL money back guarantee within the 30 of it shipping it seems like something any lover of the Bible would want to dive into. But we just have to wait and see what others think about it. I cannot even do more samples from my Hard Copy at the moment as it is packed up with the rest of my paper library will renovations happen...


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Dean Stow | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 12:21 PM

I bid more than the $8.  If I understand how this works, if it stalls at $8, people should start upping their bids if they really want it.

Three volumes?  $8?  That is a steal!

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Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Mar 21 2016 12:33 PM

Dean Stow:
Three volumes?  $8?  That is a steal!

It is and is not 3 volumes.. it is as far as I can tell always been sold as a 1 volume work. However  Each of the 3 sections begin at page 1 giving page numbers of 3 volumes in one binding. Since FL prizes it's page numbering for consistent citation I understand fully why they have labeled it as 3 volumes (but three sets of page numbers not 3 physically separate volumes). But that said at $8 1600 pages = 1/2 a cent a page which seems like a bargain to me.


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Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 22 2016 11:55 AM

I did just notice for the first time an error on the Logos description page:

  • Discover the fascinating apocryphal texts as examined by prominent Anglican scholars of the early nineteenth century.

It should be twentieth since most of them were not even born in the early nineteenth century.


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