[b-greek] Re: Eerdmans Critical Commentary

From: Kevin W. Woodruff (cierpke@prodigy.net)
Date: Fri Jun 01 2001 - 10:51:14 EDT


Since I teach exegesis of 1 Timothy I bought Quinn and Wacker when it first came out. It was the first volume of the Eerdmans Critical Commentary. One of the most obvious problems with the book is that anything that is coverd by both 1 Timothy and Titus is covered in Quinn's Titus volume in the Anchor Bible, which is in a whole different series. He merely refers to it and tells you to see the dicussion there.

The other pet peeve that I have is that each pericope is broken into two sections, "notes" and "comments." to get a full discussion you have to keep flipping back and forth between the two. "Notes" are the lexical and textual comments and "comments" are the commentary proper.

The other thing I don't like about it is that it insists on transliterating the Greek into English (Latin) characters which makes it difficult to read when you are used to dealing with Greek characters.
 Quinn and Wacker dither on authorship but seem to lean toward a non-Pauline authorship.
He does do a good job of discussing the extra-biblical literatures in the Koine and classical authors which sometimes helps the discussion and illuminates the meaning

I found the Bill Mounce's volume on the Pastorals in the Word Biblical commentary was much more servicable and covered the ground much better in a shorter commentary. Another good comemntary is I. Howard Marshall's volume in the ICC which replaces Walter Lock's venerable and skimpy contribution. Marshall doesn't hold to Pauline authorship, but he really does wrestle with the Greek.

Well that's my two pence (or cents) take on the whole issue


At 04:51 PM 5/31/2001 -0700, you wrote:
>I took my bimonthly pilgrimage to the Seattle Pacific U library last night
>and while I was there glanced through the first vol. of the Eerdmans
>Critical Commentary. I am wondering if any of the biblical Greek
>aficionados have taken a hard look at this title. I didn't have a lot of
>time to look at it and didn't want to lug it home (big book).
>I am not asking for a book review, just some comments about the usefulness
>of this series for a student who wants to work in the Greek language.
>Glancing at it briefly raised some doubts in this regard.
>About two years ago I bought eight or nine of the NIGTC vols. (package deal)
>including such titles as G. Beale on Revelation and my experience so far
>with these books is that they are really targeted toward an English Bible
>audience. Sure they contain quotes from the Greek text but the exegesis is
>done from the English translations for the most part. This business of
>translating first and then doing all of your exegetical discussion from the
>translation rather than working directly in the Greek text seems like a bad
>policy. Some of these NIGTC titles are better than others in this regard, G.
>Beale is the one I have used most and he really spends the bulk of his time

>talking about English and not Greek so I don't see why his book was included
>in a series that was supposed to be a commentary on the Greek text.
>***An aside***
>This question also has some bearing on the way things are discussed on
>b-greek. For some of us the question "how should this be translated into
>English" is not a question about the Greek text at all. It is a question
>about semantic mapping between two languages and it would be more
>appropriate to discuss it on one of Wayne's translation lists. How you
>transfer the semantic content into the target language tells you very little
>about what is going on in the source language.
>But we have argued about that before on this list. (Is there anything that
>we have not argued about before on this list?).
>***end of aside***
>If anyone has worked extensively with the first title in the Eerdmans
>Critical Commentary series I would be glad to hear some comments addressed
>to this narrow question: To what extent does this book help you understand
>the problems in the Greek Text? Again, I am not looking for a book review. I
>have already seen one or two of those (can't remember where however).
>This post is kind of long since I didn't have the time to write a short one.
>Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
>Three Tree Point
>P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062
>B-Greek home page: http://metalab.unc.edu/bgreek
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Kevin W. Woodruff, M. Div.
Library Director/Reference Librarian
Professor of New Testament Greek
Cierpke Memorial Library
Tennessee Temple University/Temple Baptist Seminary
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