NICOT/NT vs. Anchor Yale Bible???

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This post has 18 Replies | 3 Followers

Posts 55
Glenn F | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Dec 21 2012 11:53 AM

I upgraded from L4 Platinum to L5 Diamond just last week. I have been out of the loop for a while. Haha. I was wondering what the forum members thoughts are on NOCOT/NT versus The Anchor Yale Bible. I am a laymen, a simple truck driver and Logos is a blessing to me because it is difficult to attend a church, any church on any kind of regular basis. So I use Logos to feed myself you might say and answer questions that one would normally pose when playing that wonderful game "Stump The Pastor" Haha.  

 

I am conservative with strong leanings as of late toward reformed as I study more and try and learn what I can about predestination and election, just so you have a brief bit of info about me. I do not know greek but I really do want to learn if I can ever find the time. I have Mounce's books and the old Logos Learn Greek and Hebrew DVD, what I lack is time and motivation there. So that is something I want to learn at a future date.

 

Really would appreciate input from those who have these resources, especially those who have both.

 

God Bless and Merry Christmas

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Posts 172
CL | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 11:57 AM

I'm also interested in people's thoughts here. These 2 commentary sets are similarly priced. I know the common generalizations that the NICOT/NT would be more evangelical where the AYB would be more ecumenical and more liberal at times, depending on the book. Any other thoughts?

Posts 178
DavidS | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 12:00 PM

I think you mean NICOT/NT. It would be best for you considering what you have said about yourself.

Edit:

I just have NICOT/NT.

Posts 55
Glenn F | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 12:18 PM

Yep, I meant NICOT/NT. Typo. Using the iPad right now. I got it right in the subject line. Haha

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Posts 482
elnwood | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 12:39 PM

Get the NICOT/NICNT over the Anchor Yale Bible. The NIC is better suited for laypeople and is evangelical, so it would serve to help feed you spiritually. The AB is intended for scholars, and would probably bog you down with critical theories rather than give you spiritual insight.

Posts 1178
David Wilson | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 12:50 PM

Perhaps best to use a short example: Doing some research on Luke 3:21-22 in preparation for a sermon in January:

AYB (Fitzmyer [2008]):

The Baptism of Jesus
(3:21–22)

3

21 Then when all the people had been baptized and Jesus too was baptized and was praying, the heavens happened to open, 22 and the holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon him. A voice was heard from heaven, "You are my beloved son; in you I have taken delight." Isa 42:1

Comment

After the two transposed verses about John’s imprisonment (3:19–20), Luke continues with a parallel to the next episode in the Marcan sequence, the baptism of Jesus (3:21–22). In the Greek text of Luke these two verses form one long sentence. They are inspired by Mark 1:9–11, but have been reformulated in Lucan language and stripped of some details, though two characteristically Lucan features have been added. It is highly unlikely that Luke is here substituting for Marcan material a "Q" form of this episode, since the minor agreements with Matthew over against Mark in this case are not so clear that one should postulate a source independent of Mark, pace H. Schürmann, Lukasevangelium, 197,218–219.

The Lucan redactional modifications of the Marcan source are mainly five. (1) Luke omits the notice that Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized in the Jordan (Mark 1:9). Given the reduced formulation of the imprisonment of John and its transposition to its present Lucan position, it would have made little sense to tell of Jesus’ move from Galilean Nazareth to the Jordan after that imprisonment. Luke is content simply to insinuate that Jesus was among "the crowds that came out to be baptized" by John (3:7). H. Conzelmann (Theology, 20) considers the omission of the Marcan geographical details to be another conscious Lucan modification intended to separate Jesus from John’s locale. But this is overdrawn, since, though Jesus may nowhere in Luke be related to the Jordan, both John and Jesus are connected with the desert (3:2; 4:1; cf. W. Wink, John the Baptist, 49). Luke is obviously aware from the gospel tradition before him of a story about Jesus’ baptism which he feels obliged to retain, but which he also adapts to his own purpose. (2) Luke omits that Jesus was baptized "by John" (Mark 1:9); this modification is the result of the imprisonment of John in the immediately preceding pericope. (3) Luke depicts Jesus at prayer—one of the characteristically Lucan features added to the episode. (4) Luke describes the heavens as "opening" instead of being "rent" (schizomenous, Mark 1:10). In this he resembles Matt 3:16; but the verb forms are not identical (Luke has aneōchthēnai, aor. pass. infin.; but Matthew has ēneōchthēsan, aor. pass. indic.). The resemblance, however, is coincidental, since both have merely substituted an OT verb for the Marcan expression (see Isa 64:1 [LXX 63:19]; Ezek 1:1; cf. Gen 7:11; Mal 3:10; Isa 24:18; 3 Macc 6:18). (5) Luke adds "in bodily form" to the descent of the Spirit like a dove—another characteristically Lucan feature.

Form-critically viewed, this Lucan episode is a Story about Jesus. R. Bultmann (HST, 247–248), while not questioning the historicity of the event, regards the Marcan form of the story as "a faith legend," because of its essentially miraculous element and edifying purpose. He rightly rejects the attempt. to use the scene to psychoanalyze Jesus and even to regard the episode like an OT "call" story (such as Isa 6:1–13; Jer 1:5–19; Ezek 1–2), noting that there is in the account not even a word about Jesus’ inner experience, about a commission given to him, or about a reply from him. (The Lucan form of the story slightly modifies this; see below.) Bultmann thus rightly recognizes that the main purpose of the episode is to tell of "Jesus’ consecration"—or, to put it another way, to tell of heaven’s identification and approval of him.

Bultmann is not right, however, in labeling the baptism-scene as "Jesus’ consecration as messiah" (HST, 248). Neither the descent of the Spirit upon Jesus, nor the recognition of him as "Son," nor the implication of his being Yahweh’s Servant connote a messianic function. There is simply no evidence that the titles "Son (of God)" or "Servant of Yahweh" were regarded as messianic (i.e. belonging to an expected, future anointed agent of Yahweh) in pre-Christian Judaism. Hence Jesus’ consecration must be understood more strictly as the Synoptic evangelists have themselves proposed it.

The episode of Jesus’ baptism does not play the same role in the Third Gospel that its original counterpart did in Mark. In that Gospel, which lacks an infancy narrative, the scene of Jesus’ baptism is intended to tell the reader who Jesus is. The heavenly declaration and the descent of the Spirit reveal him as someone related to heaven and favored by heaven in a special way. The creative and prophetic presence of God’s Spirit is to be with him and mark his ministry; he is God’s Son and (by implication) is to act as Yahweh’s Servant. Thus his heaven-blessed ministry is inaugurated in the Marcan baptismal scene. But in the present form of the Lucan Gospel the reader has already learned from the infancy narrative that Jesus is "Savior, Lord, and Messiah" (2:11); he has been hailed as "Son" (1:32, 35) and the activity of the Spirit in his regard has already been made clear (1:35). Even though the infancy narrative has been written with the hindsight of the Gospel proper and represents the last stage of its composition, what it conveys at the outset tones down the effect of the baptism scene in the Gospel proper. The only distinctive Lucan element in it is the notice that the heavenly identification of Jesus took place while he was at prayer—the added Lucan item touches on Jesus’ inner experience, but only in a vague way.

Luke’s handling of the baptism scene makes it the least coherent of the three Synoptic forms. In the Marcan account Jesus "saw the heavens rent" and the Spirit descending on him like a dove; the heavenly voice addresses him directly (in the second sg.), "You are my son …" It is thus a vision accorded to Jesus alone. Luke follows Mark in that the voice is addressed to Jesus alone; but the "opening" of the heavens is recounted as an observable event, and the reality of the descending Spirit is stressed by the added phrase, "in bodily form." In Matthew, however, the vision has become an epiphany or public manifestation: the opening of heaven is recounted as an observable event, and the heavenly voice proclaims to all present, "This is my son.…" The Lucan form of the account is thus peculiar, being no longer a vision accorded solely to Jesus (as in Mark) nor yet the public manifestation (as in Matthew). F.-L. Lentzen-Deis (Die Taufe Jesu, 284–286) thinks that Luke has altered the form from a Deute-Vision (in Mark) to an Epiphanie because of his non-Jewish Hellenistic readers, who would not have understood the former. This is, however, far from clear.

The main purpose, then, of the baptism scene in the Lucan Gospel is to announce the heavenly identification of Jesus as "Son" and (indirectly) as Yahweh’s Servant. The descent of the Spirit upon him is a preparation for the ministry, the "beginning" of which is noted in the immediately following context (v. 23). His being fitted out with the Spirit will be noted again in 4:1, 14, as the ministry gets under way.

There are, however, two other aspects of this episode that have to be commented on. The first is the implication of Jesus’ baptism. In the Lucan context Jesus is associated with "all the people" who thronged to John for baptism (3:21; cf. 3:7), i.e. to submit themselves to the ritual washing for "the forgiveness of sins" (3:3). Why is Jesus depicted submitting to this rite? (This question is often posed in terms of Stage I of the gospel tradition, i.e. about the historical Jesus; but once again, the answer can only be given in terms of the way in which the evangelists have presented this scene, in terms of Stage III of that tradition.)

Answers have been given to the question in various ways: (a) The evangelists wanted to portray Jesus as a person conscious of sin, yet recognizing in John’s call for repentance an opportunity for personal conversion. Even if such a view of the man Jesus finds a sympathetic resonance in modern readers, it runs counter to all that the early Christian tradition has recorded about Jesus’ consciousness of sin (e.g. John 8:46; 2 Cor 5:21; Heb 4:15; 7:26; 9:14). (b) The evangelists wanted to portray Jesus as approving of John’s ministry and recognizing it as a manifestation of God’s will for the salvation of people. Though this answer may contain an element of truth in it (see Luke 20:4–7), it is more suited to the Matthean form of the story (with its compositional addition of 3:14–15) than to either the more primitive form of Mark or the Lucan form, (c) The evangelists portray Jesus as a sort of disciple of John, accepting his baptism as a mark of initial association with him and recognizing it as a preparatory stage of his own ministry. This view would not fit into Conzelmann’s sharply drawn division of ministries of John and Jesus in the Lucan Gospel; but it is not excluded by any of the Synoptic accounts (even Luke 3:21 could be so understood), and it finds support in the Johannine tradition (see John 1:29–50; 3:26). (d) The evangelists depict Jesus submitting to John’s baptism as a symbolic anticipation of his passion and the expiatory significance that it would have—associating with the "outlaws" of Isa 53:12 for whom his life would be poured out. This might seem to be supported by the allusion to a "baptism" (see Luke 12:50) that Jesus still has to undergo (in his passion and death). But it is reading far more into the scene than the text itself will support. If there is an allusion to the Servant of Yahweh in 3:22, it does not immediately take on all the possible nuances of that figure’s role. Of these various answers the third is the one that is most suited to the Lucan context.

The second aspect of this episode that calls for comment is the relation of the baptism scene to Lucan theology as a whole. Above we rejected Bultmann’s interpretation of it as "Jesus’ consecration as messiah." The main reason for the rejection is that neither the descent of the Spirit upon him nor the titles used or implied are necessarily messianic (in the strict sense). There is, however, another angle of the matter that has to be considered. In Acts 10:37–38, in the résumé of Jesus’ ministry set forth there, Luke reflects on the baptism scene and notes "how God anointed him with the holy Spirit and with power." The wording there alludes to Isa 61:1 (cf. Luke 4:18), and the Lucan reflection in Acts interprets the baptism of Jesus as a messianic anointing. This has to be understood in terms of Lucan theology as a whole, even though the idea of a messianic anointing is not clear in the baptism scene itself.

Finally, it should be recalled that a similar heavenly identification of Jesus will be given again in the Lucan Gospel, in the transfiguration scene (9:28–36), "This is my Son, my Chosen One! Listen to him." There the declaration will take on the character of a public manifestation. But, as in this case, it will precede an important period in the ministry of Jesus, as this is presented in the Lucan Gospel. The declaration at the baptism precedes the Galilean ministry itself, whereas the declaration in chap. 9 precedes the travel account or the journey of Jesus to the city of destiny, Jerusalem. In both scenes the heavenly identification stresses the relation of Jesus to his Father, as an important phase of his earthly career begins.

NICNT (Green [ 1997]) :

The Anointing of Jesus (3:21–22)

21 Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, 22 

and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, "You are my Son, the beloved; with you I am well pleased."

Luke is less interested in Jesus’ baptism as such, and more concerned with his endowment with the Spirit and God’s affirmation of his sonship. Thus, this complex sentence centers on three infinitive clauses set in parallel: "the heaven was opened," "the Holy Spirit descended," and "a voice came." In fact, these actions are reported to have occurred not during Jesus’ baptism, but afterward, while he was praying. The initial dependent clauses lead into the focal point of this pericope by stressing Jesus’ solidarity with those who had responded positively to John’s message; by participating in the ritual act of baptism, we may recall, they (he) communicated their (his) fundamental orientation around God’s purpose.

This scene is set in the world of apocalyptic, with its emphasis on the unveiling of divine mystery. The opening of heaven is familiar from apocalyptic literature, as is the heavenly voice. Of particular interest is Ezekiel 2, where the divine voice is accompanied by an empowering spirit, and the message is one of prophetic commissioning. While the topos of prayer is not particularly apocalyptic, in Luke-Acts prayer is often mentioned in the context of revelation and commission or empowerment (1:19–20; 2:37–38; Acts 4:23–31; 9:10–19; 10; 13:1–3; 22:7–21).

These apocalyptic elements direct our attention to one of the two central foci of this scene—namely, the divine pronouncement of Jesus’ status. Of course, we (Luke’s audience) are already aware of Jesus’ son- and messiahship (1:32–35, 41; 2:11). Now, however, Jesus’ identity in relation to God and God’s redemptive project is proclaimed by God himself. Heaven itself has opened, providing us with direct insight into God’s own view of things. That the voice of God agrees with those earlier voices (i.e., of Gabriel, Elizabeth, and the angelic host) accents their credibility. It also underscores the bi-polarity of possible responses to Jesus. One can join Elizabeth, the angels, the narrator, and others who affirm Jesus’ exalted status and/or identity as God’s Son, or one can reject this evaluation and so pit oneself over against God.

Significantly, God’s words in 3:22 echo the OT, and this confirms their capacity to speak on his behalf too. One hears first Ps 2:7. The verbal resemblance is minor, but God’s voice resonates with the earlier words of God’s personal servant Gabriel in 1:32–35, where the connection was made between "Son of God" and the Davidic throne. What is more, for Luke the occasion of Jesus’ baptism is manifestly his anointing for divine service. This is the interpretation given by Jesus in 4:18–19 and repeated by Peter in Acts 10:37–38. This confluence teases out from Psalm 2 another key description of the Davidic king: the Lord’s anointed one. As a result, the heavenly voice draws on the psalm, with its important picture of the anointed, Davidic monarch who is God’s earthly representative, employing those associations along with the hope it spawned, to aid the signifying process at work in the Lukan scene. Equally consequential are the ways in which that psalmic message is transformed in its Lukan application, where "Son of God" can no longer be understood in an adoptionistic sense and where anointing with oil has been superseded by endowment with the Spirit.

Thus, Jesus’ baptism as traditionally understood has been cast by the narrator as Jesus’ anointing by the Spirit. This is a pivotal experience for Jesus that (1) sets in motion the sequence of events to follow and, by implication, sets the course of his entire mission (cf. 4:1, 14, 18–19); (2) is expounded as the event that determines his understanding of his divine mission and empowers him to perform accordingly (4:18–19; Acts 10:37–38); and (3) anticipates the analogous empowering of Jesus’ followers in Acts (e.g., Acts 1:8; 2). No symbolic equation of Spirit and dove has been found in literature earlier than or contemporaneous with the Gospels, and it may be that this simile is intended to evoke the symbolism of the dove as a herald or bearer of good tidings; this would advance the portrait of Jesus’ empowerment to proclaim good news.10 Luke’s "in bodily form" emphasizes the materiality of this apocalyptic scene in a characteristic way (cf. 22:43–44; 23:44–45; 24:50–53; Acts 1:9–11; 2:1–4).

The second text foregrounded by the heavenly voice in 3:22 is Isa 42:1, a passage that also intimately links the object of divine pleasure with the anointing of the Spirit for divine mission. Our hearing an echo of Isa 42:1 also picks up on earlier intertextual connections with the Isaianic Servant in the Gospel—for example, Isa 42:6; 49:6 in 2:32. Finally, we may hear echoes of Gen 22:2, not only because of linguistic parallels, but also because of the importance of the story of Abraham for Luke thus far. This would help to link further the realization of the divine promise to Abraham with the commission of Jesus.

The purpose of the divine voice in 3:22 is above all that of providing an unimpeachable sanction of Jesus with regard to his identity and mission. [5 highlights] Working in concert with the endowment of the Holy Spirit, this divine affirmation presents in its most acute form Jesus’ role as God’s agent of redemption. This accentuates Jesus’ role as God’s representative, the one through whom God’s aim will be further presented and worked out in the story, but it also demonstrates at least in a provisional way the nature of Jesus’ mission by calling attention to the boundaries of his exercise of power. His mission and status are spelled out in relation to God and with reference to his purpose as expressed in the Scriptures, as God’s Servant and Son who fulfills his mission of redemption and establishes peace with justice in ways that flow out of his uncompromising obedience to God. It is this notion of the boundaries determined by obedience to God’s purpose that the devil will test in 4:1–13.

 

Posts 55
Glenn F | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 1:10 PM

Thank you David for the contrasting sample. Thats just what I was looking for. NICOT/NT it will be for me. i am not interested in Biblical scholars debating and making published counter points to each others work. I want to know that particular authors opinion on the biblical text. Maybe some day I will be interested in textual criticism and the like, but not today. Thanks everyone.

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Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 3:26 PM

Glenn F:

I was wondering what the forum members thoughts are on NOCOT/NT versus The Anchor Yale Bible.

I am conservative with strong leanings as of late toward reformed as I study more and try and learn what I can about predestination and election, just so you have a brief bit of info about me. 

Really would appreciate input from those who have these resources, especially those who have both.

 

I had both of these, Glenn, but I gave away the NICOT/NT along with a large number of other resources to a minister, keeping the Anchor Yale Bible (and other more liberal/critical resources, which better match my leanings).

I would say that the NICOT/NT would be a very good choice for you.  It is an excellent commentary set and would also be "right down your alley" theologically, I would think.  I do not think you would regret owning it.

Glenn F:

God Bless and Merry Christmas

And the same to you, Sir (and to everyone else reading this thread).

Pax...

Fred

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 3:34 PM

(Hmmm...  This is my second attempt at a reply to Glenn - the first was rejected with a server error report - hopefully this second attempt will not end up being redundant.)

I used to own both the NICOT/NT and the Anchor Yale Bible.  I gave the NICOT/NT license away to a minister (along with the licenses to a lot of other resources) but kept the Anchor Yale Bible (and a few other more liberal/critical resources, which better match my leanings).

I would say that the NICOT/NT would be a good choice for you.  It is an excellent commentary set, and "right up your alley" theologically, I think.  I do not think you would regret obtaining the NICOT/NT at all.

And God Bless and Merry Christmas to you, Sir (and to anyone else reading this thread).

Pax...

Fred

Posts 6004
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 3:54 PM

I've seen this happen every time I post today Fred.  But despite the error message my post shows up.  The Mayan's might have been onto something, but just had the context wrong....

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 4:46 PM
(Hmmm...  This is my second attempt at a reply to Glenn - the first was rejected with a server error message - hopefully this second attempt will not end up being redundant.) I used to own both the NICOT/NT and the Anchor Yale Bible.  I gave the NICOT/NT license away to a minister (along with the licenses to a lot of other resources) but kept the Anchor Yale Bible (and a few other more liberal/critical resources, which better match my leanings). I would say that the NICOT/NT would be a good choice for you.  It is an excellent commentary set, and "right up your alley" theologically, I think.  I do not think you would regret obtaining the NICOT/NT at all. And God Bless and Merry Christmas to you, Sir (and to anyone else reading this thread). Pax...

Fred

Posts 9005
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 9:38 PM

Fred:
(Hmmm...  This is my second attempt at a reply to Glenn 

You mean your third attempt, Fred? Stick out tongueWink

DAL

Posts 1523
Josh | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 21 2012 10:35 PM

The AYB commentaries are way too liberal for my everyday needs. I would only consider using it as a resource in an academic paper.

Go for the NICOT/NT.

Posts 158
Fred | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 22 2012 6:30 AM

I amvery  sorry for the multiple posts, but I kept getting a server error message ("Sorry, there was a problem with your last request! Either the site is offline or an unhandled error occurred. We apologize and have logged the error. Please try your request again or if you know who your site administrator is let them know too."). However, I now see that, despite the error message, the posts are going through anyway. I do apologize.

Fred

Posts 55
Glenn F | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 27 2012 5:39 PM

I went with NICOT/NT. Got it for $1399. I admit tho I was hoping for a better price since i just upgraded to Diamond with some other goodies at 2K AND I called during the sale of a lifetime. Haha. I am also one of those underwhelmed by the sale after such a grand statement.

 

Blessings to all.

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Posts 302
JPH | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 28 2012 6:17 AM

Glenn F:
Got it for $1399

Not a bad price for the NIC.

Congrats on the purchase, love the NIC!

Posts 439
Mathew Haferkamp | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 28 2012 8:00 PM

Hey Glenn

     It is nice to hear that I am not the only driver out there using logos.  I hope you have a good ride.

                       Matt "The Fatboy" Haferkamp

 

 

Posts 9005
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 28 2012 9:01 PM

I'd like to try another career in driving 18 wheelers.   How do I go about doing that? And is it worth (pay wise)?

Thanks!

DAL

(Looking for alternatives due to this economy we're in).

Posts 55
Glenn F | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 28 2012 10:49 PM

You can make decent money but not the first couple of years usually. It is not for everybody. If you have a family you will be apart for long periods and miss birthdays and other special events. On the other hand I enjoy my job most days. It's the only job I know where I can listen to audiobooks and sermons all day long and get paid for it. Lol.

 

If you have options for a job that allows you to keep a normal life then thats the what I would advise. The reason I initially invested in Logos was because I rarely had the chance to attend church. Logos is a way I can feed myself on the Word and answer the questions that arise from that. Go to a truck stop and talk to some of the drivers. If you have a truck stop near by that is. One of the few with a chapel service, attend the service and talk to some of the drivers who show up. I will be happy to answer any questions you have.

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