"value add" of the Zondervan Bible Background Commentary sets

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Paul Yeager | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Apr 17 2012 4:56 PM

Being new to Logos 4, I am finding the forums a huge help.  Searching the forums has brought a number of resources to my attention of which I was previously unaware. 

I remain curious about the Zondervan Bible Background Commentary sets. 

Currently, I have Scholar's Library, the IVP Reference Collection, and Beale/Carson -- Commentary on the Use of the OT in the NT (just added due to recommendations on the forums).

My question is to those who own the OT set and/or the NT set: what gap in your library does the set fill?  Or, what does the set do better than any other resource in your library?

 

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 17 2012 6:04 PM

Paul, I have both old and new.  I was quite impressed with Guthrie's section on Hebrews.  Some of the other books I didn't think stood out, especially if you have keener's background commentary.  Haven't used the OT version as much, but I think it helpful.  But one area where it is nice: graphics.  I have used the pictures for sermons, etc.  especially for Hebrews.

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 17 2012 6:05 PM

"It" refers to the whole set being nice for the graphics

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 17 2012 6:25 PM

Dan DeVilder:

"...Some of the other books I didn't think stood out, especially if you have keener's background commentary."

So are you saying IVP's by Keener's is not that good? Just wondering because I think Carson says to be careful with the Zondervan set and to always consult other sources when using them and not to rely sole upon those 2.

Blessings!

DAL

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Mark Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Apr 17 2012 7:44 PM

Carson's warning is:

The Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary is a four-volume work edited by Clinton E. Arnold (2002, £23.99 per vol., £95.99 for the set/$39.99 per vol., $159.99 for the set). It is sometimes worth skimming in conjunction with commentaries on the text at hand, but the best of the major commentaries usually include all the relevant background materials anyway. To use this four-volume set by itself is unwise: it might encourage the unwary reader to think that the background is the foreground, with the result that what the text actually says quietly dissolves from view.

D. A. Carson, New Testament Commentary Survey, 6th ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2007), 29.

On Keener:

Several one-volume, single-author commentaries sport peculiar strengths and weaknesses. Craig S. Keener, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament (/IVP 1994, $32.00) does not so much comment on the entire text as offer comment on those parts of the text he judges to be best elucidated by referring to “background” material—or, more precisely, such texts become the springboard for elucidating that background material (which may be textual, archaeological, social, and so forth).

D. A. Carson, New Testament Commentary Survey, 6th ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2007), 34-35.

I am with Carson in believing good modern commentaries usually include much of what these 'background' commentaries provide. I rarely look at them. (I don't have the Zondervan NT ones so am not commenting specifically on them, but have the Zondervan OT ones as well as both of the IVP ones.) Those with few of the better or more modern commentaries would probably benefit from them more than I do.

Pastor, North Park Baptist Church

Bridgeport, CT USA

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Apr 19 2012 3:40 PM

DAL:

Dan DeVilder:

"...Some of the other books I didn't think stood out, especially if you have keener's background commentary."

So are you saying IVP's by Keener's is not that good? Just wondering because I think Carson says to be careful with the Zondervan set and to always consult other sources when using them and not to rely sole upon those 2.

Blessings!

DAL

sorry so late to respond.  no, i was actually inferring that Keener was a bit better, imo.  Except for Guthrie on Hebrews, I generally agree with what Mark Smith quoted from Carson about the Zondervan set.  I did not think the set was that enlightening.  I think Keener is more enlightening.  As far as the usefulness of background material in a "background commentary", I would say that it is nice having easy access to all the relevant background info in a commentary based solely on background.  In other commentaries, you have to wade through a lot of other material and pick out the background info.  Seeing it all up front (and Keener often will have a small write up on each scriptural pericope, too) really is helpful.  I will say this about  Guthrie's section on Hebrews in the ZIBBC: if you own the NIVAC Hebrews commentary (written by him) and the Commentary on the NT use of the OT (with the Hebrews section also by Guthrie), the Zondervan background will not add anything new (essentially.  Maybe SOMEWHERE there is a tidbit.  I haven't found it).  The only thing it would add, then, are the pictures that show tabernacle compound/utensils/scenes, etc., that can be used for teaching.

 

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

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David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 20 2012 6:45 AM

Dan DeVilder:
As far as the usefulness of background material in a "background commentary", I would say that it is nice having easy access to all the relevant background info in a commentary based solely on background.  In other commentaries, you have to wade through a lot of other material and pick out the background info.  Seeing it all up front (and Keener often will have a small write up on each scriptural pericope, too) really is helpful.

YesYes

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Apr 20 2012 2:33 PM

Dan DeVilder:

DAL:

Dan DeVilder:

"...Some of the other books I didn't think stood out, especially if you have keener's background commentary."

So are you saying IVP's by Keener's is not that good? Just wondering because I think Carson says to be careful with the Zondervan set and to always consult other sources when using them and not to rely sole upon those 2.

Blessings!

DAL

sorry so late to respond.  no, i was actually inferring that Keener was a bit better, imo.  Except for Guthrie on Hebrews, I generally agree with what Mark Smith quoted from Carson about the Zondervan set.  I did not think the set was that enlightening.  I think Keener is more enlightening.  As far as the usefulness of background material in a "background commentary", I would say that it is nice having easy access to all the relevant background info in a commentary based solely on background.  In other commentaries, you have to wade through a lot of other material and pick out the background info.  Seeing it all up front (and Keener often will have a small write up on each scriptural pericope, too) really is helpful.  I will say this about  Guthrie's section on Hebrews in the ZIBBC: if you own the NIVAC Hebrews commentary (written by him) and the Commentary on the NT use of the OT (with the Hebrews section also by Guthrie), the Zondervan background will not add anything new (essentially.  Maybe SOMEWHERE there is a tidbit.  I haven't found it).  The only thing it would add, then, are the pictures that show tabernacle compound/utensils/scenes, etc., that can be used for teaching.

 

Got it! ;-) I'm glad I saved myself some money then...hehehe.  I like my IVP Background commentaries OT and NT, over all good stuff, but don't necessarily agree with all that it's said in them.  I like Guthrie on just about anything he writes.  He's a talented writer.  Anyway, thanks!

Blessings!

DAL

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 22 2012 1:49 PM

DAL:
Got it! ;-) I'm glad I saved myself some money then...hehehe.

 

of course that went toward a few other Logos resources, correct?  Or was it Big Macs?  Surprise

 

Wink

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

Posts 607
Ted Weis | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 22 2012 2:37 PM

IMHO, the OT Zondervan Background set is outstanding. On a 1-10 scale, I'd put it a 9. The NT Zondervan Background set I would rate a 6.

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Ben | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 22 2012 4:00 PM

I only have the Old Testament Background set, and it's excellent. Being relatively recent, it links to all kinds of useful things elsewhere in Logos like other ancient Near Eastern texts, etc. It doesn't always cover everything I expected it to, but it's still quite good.

"The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected."- G.K. Chesterton

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 22 2012 6:20 PM

Dan DeVilder:

DAL:
Got it! ;-) I'm glad I saved myself some money then...hehehe.

 

of course that went toward a few other Logos resources, correct?  Or was it Big Macs?  Surprise

 

Wink

Don't tempt me now, I've been staying away from Big Macs since December of 2011 and I've now lost 21 lbs.  It's tough, specially with the nice crunchy fries inside the BigMac (I used to put fries in the burger Stick out tongue ).  Other Logos resources, yes of course; especially during March Madness ;-) some Carson and NT Wright.

Blessings!

DAL

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Friedrich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 23 2012 7:39 AM

DAL:
I've been staying away from Big Macs since December of 2011 and I've now lost 21 lbs.

super fanTASTico!!!!  (emphasis on "tast"e a coincidence . . . )  that's great!

DAL:
It's tough, specially with the nice crunchy fries inside the BigMac (I used to put fries in the burger Stick out tongue ).

I put zesty dill Kruncher-style potato chips on my baloney sandwiches.

DAL:
NT Wright.

i went hog wild on that guy.

I like Apples.  Especially Honeycrisp.

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