Dr. Cynthia Briggs Kittredge on Why You Need Another Commentary

fortress-commentary-on-the-bibleRecently, we spoke with Dr. Cynthia Briggs Kittredge about the Fortress Commentary on the Bible, an exciting two-volume commentary that’s now available on Pre-Pub.

Here’s what she had to say about this resource:

Why a two-volume commentary set? Aren’t there enough multivolume commentaries to satisfy the average reader?

I’ve said to myself in the past: “The world doesn’t need another Bible commentary—therefore, don’t ever write one!” However, I made an exception for this project because of its hermeneutical perspective, one that is akin to what I have been teaching in my Bible classes in the seminary setting. Interpretation requires a process of attending to and negotiating between the text in its historical setting, the “world in front of the text,” the history of interpretation and commentary, and contemporary concerns and theological questions. Levels A, B, and C address those dimensions in a way that is accessible and helpful to the reader who is not an expert.

Did the editors work to coordinate views across the two volumes? Across books?

The editors did not aim at a single viewpoint, but sought creative and engaged scholars who would be enthusiastic about the challenge to focus on history, reception, and current ethical conversations with the biblical text.

You worked primarily on the New Testament. What are some of the highlights of this volume?

Yes, I worked on the NT volume, while my coeditors recruited the authors for each book. Then I was responsible for editing particular articles. I particularly recommend Deborah Krause’s articles on 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus, Sylvia Keesmaat’s Colossians, and Jaime Clark-Soles’ chapters on the Johannine epistles. Of special interest to me is Neil Elliott’s introduction to Paul’s letters: “Situating the Apostle Paul in his Day and Engaging his Legacy as Our Own.” Elliott states eloquently the interpretive challenge and promise of reading these influential letters today.

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The Fortress Commentary on the Bible is now available on Pre-Pub. Save over 30% when you pre-order this new resource today!