Recognized as a masterly commentary when it first appeared, Frederick Dale Bruner's study of Matthew is now available as a greatly revised and expanded two-volume work -- the result of seven years of careful refinement, enrichment, and updating.
Through this commentary, crafted especially for teachers, pastors, and Bible students, Bruner aims "to help God's people love what Matthew's Gospel says." Bruner's work is at once broadly historical and deeply theological. It is historical in drawing extensively on great church teachers through the centuries and on the classical Christian creeds and confessions. It is theological in that it unpacks the doctrines in each passage, chapter, and section of the Gospel. Consciously attempting to bridge past and present, Bruner asks both what Matthew's Gospel said
to its first hearers and what it says
to readers today. As a result, his commentary is profoundly relevant to contemporary congregations and to those who guide them.
Bruner's commentary is replete with lively, verse-by-verse discussion of Matthew's text. While each chapter expounds a specific topic or doctrine, the book's format consists of a vivid, original translation of the text followed by faithful exegesis and critical analysis, a survey of historical commentary on the text, and current applications of the text or theme under study. In this revision Bruner continues to draw on the best in modern scholarship -- including recent work by W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison Jr., by Ulrich Luz, and by many others -- adding new voices to the reading of Matthew. At the same time he cites the classic commentaries of Chrysostom, Jerome, Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Bengel, and the rest, who, like Bruner himself, were not simply doctrinal teachers but also careful exegetes of Scripture. Such breadth and depth of learning assure that Bruner's Matthew
will remain, as a reviewer for Interpretation
wrote, "the most dog-eared commentary on the shelf."
Volume 2 of Bruner's commentary is called The Churchbook
because Bruner sees Matthew 13-28 as concerned primarily with the life of the church and discipleship. Continuing his Volume 1 Christbook
exposition, Bruner shows here how the focus of Matthew shifts, from Jesus teaching about who he is
to teaching mainly about what his church is
. Bruner's Churchbook
commentary divides the second half of Matthew according to its major ecclesiological themes: the church's faith (chapters 13-17), the church's love (18-20), the church's history (21-23), the church's hope (24-25), and the church's passion (26-28).
Eminently readable, rich in biblical insight, and ecumenical in tone, Bruner's two-volume commentary on Matthew now stands among the best in the field.