by Bill Combs
I received a phone call from a pastor in Florida a few weeks back who was going to be speaking in his church from the book of Ephesians. He wanted my opinion as to what I considered to be the best commentary on the epistle. I quickly told him to look at Harold Hoehner’s Ephesians, published by Baker, and Peter O’Brien’s Letter to the Ephesians, published by Eerdmans.
This is a question that we often get at the seminary: “What is the best commentary on ______? In order to help students, pastors, and others answer this question, a number of years ago we created what we call the Basic Library Booklist. You can find a copy here. The Booklist has been specifically designed to answer the question of which books are the best on a particular book of the Bible or theological subject. In the case of commentaries, best means those that are the most helpful in exegesis and exposition, as well as understanding the overall argument of a book. The books are listed in order of importance. The first book listed is the one that should probably be purchased first, though it is doubtful that one commentary would be sufficient for adequate sermon preparation.
Besides commentaries the Booklist also rates books in systematic theology, historical theology, and practical theology. Check out the Booklist and let us know what you think.