Robert L. Hubbard Jr.
Someone once said, "The past is another country -- they do things
differently there." At times, indeed, the Old Testament resembles
another very different
country. Maneuvering through levitical
laws, bloodshed in Joshua, or Daniel's apocalyptic visions, sincere
readers often wonder what the Old Testament means and how it can be the
Word of God. For several decades The New International Commentary on the Old Testament
has helped countless people traverse this difficult literary terrain.
This premier commentary series enjoys a worldwide readership of
scholars, pastors, priests, rabbis, and serious Bible students. They
eagerly consult its high-quality volumes to inform their preaching,
teaching, and academic research, and they warmly welcome each newly
published volume as they would an encounter with a stimulating new
friend. Through the rigorous yet reverent study contained in these
commentary volumes, readers hear afresh the voice of the living God
speaking his powerful word.
All of the NICOT volumes combine superior scholarship, an evangelical
view of Scripture as the Word of God, and concern for the life of faith
today. Each volume features an extensive introduction treating the
biblical book's authorship, date, purpose, structure, and theology. The
author's own translation of the original Hebrew and verse-by-verse
commentary follow. The commentary itself carefully balances coverage of
technical matters with exposition of the biblical text's theology and
Readers who want to hear God's voice anew through Scripture will find The New International Commentary on the Old Testament
to be a faithful, trustworthy guide for helping them navigate the strange other country we call the Old Testament.
Ecclesiastes is one of the most
fascinating -- and hauntingly familiar -- books of the Old Testament.
The sentiments of the main speaker of the book, a person given the name
Qohelet, sound incredibly modern. Expressing the uncertainty and
anxieties of our own age, he is driven by the question, "Where can we
find meaning in the world?"
But while Qohelet's question
resonates with readers today, his answer is shocking. "Meaningless,"
says Qohelet, "everything is meaningless." How does this pessimistic
perspective fit into the rest of biblical revelation? In this commentary
Tremper Longman III addresses this question by taking a
canonical-Christocentric approach to the meaning of Ecclesiastes.
first provides an extensive introduction to Ecclesiastes, exploring
such background matters as authorship, language, genre, structure,
literary style, and the book's theological message. He argues that the
author of Ecclesiastes is not Solomon, as has been traditionally
thought, but a writer who adopts a Solomonic persona. In the
verse-by-verse commentary that follows, Longman helps clarify the
confusing, sometimes contradictory message of Ecclesiastes by showing
that the book should be divided into three sections -- a prologue
(1:1-11), Qohelet's autobiographical speech (1:12–12:7), and an epilogue
(12:8-14) -- and that the frame narrative provided by prologue and
epilogue is the key to understanding the message of the book as a whole.
Journal of Biblical Literature
Longman's commentary on Ecclesiastes is a welcome addition to the
NICOT series and a solid contribution to the elusive field of wisdom in
ancient Israel. Longman exhibits his literary and theological
sensitivities in a very accessible style."
"An indispensable resource for those wishing to understand the intricacies of the original text of Ecclesiastes."
"An outstanding contribution to studies on Ecclesiastes."
whole, Longman has provided an up-to-date, conversant and provocative
commentary on the ever-difficult words of Qohelet."
The Bible Today
"Scholars and serious students of the Bible will find this an important resource."
Daniel I. Block
commentary goes a long way in solving the riddle that is the book of
Ecclesiastes. . . Will be highly treasured by those who have
opportunity to teach and preach the message of Ecclesiastes."
offers a provocative genre- and structure-based explanation for the
divergent perspectives expressed within the book of Ecclesiastes. His
thorough exposition of Qohelet's 'meaningless' search for meaning and
of the canonical book's final critique of skepticism ultimately points
readers toward Jesus Christ, whose death and resurrection have
restored meaning to life 'under the sun."