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Commentaries When the SDA Commentary Says Very Little on a Subject


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On 8/22/2020 at 11:08 AM, Theophilus said:

Do many here use other commentaries for study?  I particularly like Matthew Henry.  Any Henry naysayers? Are there some others you have a preference for?

Yes; I do; mostly Bible Gateway, BlueLetter Bible, Chuck Missler, and Joel Richardson.  There are several areas in EGW's books don't jive with scripture; as well as challenging scriptures that she doesn't address at all (like Gen. 6:1-5).

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On 8/24/2020 at 6:39 PM, JoeMo said:

Yes; I do; mostly Bible Gateway, BlueLetter Bible, Chuck Missler, and Joel Richardson.  There are several areas in EGW's books don't jive with scripture; as well as challenging scriptures that she doesn't address at all (like Gen. 6:1-5).

When a person states over and over put her books down and take the Bible and I truly think she means it. EGW were giving visions that comes directly from THE MOST HIGH. Many things she wrote were base on the historical thoughts of her time. She came out of the Methodist faith and was still on milk as the pioneers were. YAHWEH through THE POWER of THE HOLY SPIRIT was leading them toward truth, slowly. In 1888 they rejected the light that would have lead them a little higher and closer to the truth of the Testimony of YAHSHUA. But, sadly they rejected it.

Now, the commentaries are to assist but never to take the place of the Bible. I have some problems with Henry commentaries but to be honest those writers in the past were more close to the Scriptures then the ones today. We want to analyze the Bible we have today and we have become just like the Greeks. We are Hellenized use all of the various Greek and Latin terms to tried and explain the Scriptures. My question is why on earth do we need THE HOLY SPIRIT if you are going to take the facts or comments of men? It is the job and POWER of THE HOLY SPIRIT  to lead us into all truth and not men's comments. Can they assist, I say yes if they are in line with the Bible.

Many of us today want to believe in myths like the Greeks and to be honest all ancient pagan believers. We do not believe in the reality of the Bible. We cannot for example know the difference of a woman riding a beast and being the beast! Explain that! Here's another one, Rev Chapter 18 makes it very clear that Babylon is Jerusalem! When did Babylon the kingdom of Nebuchadnezzar every killed any prophets or apostles?

Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye Holy apostles and prophets; for ELOHIYM hath avenged you on her. Rev 18:20  

Babylon did not exist during the time of the apostles, THE HOLY SPIRIT let's you know the symbolic meaning of Babylon that goes back to Nimrod. This is when THE MOST HIGH, THE SON and THE HOLY SPIRIT all THREE came down together and confound the people's language and it became a city of confusion. No temple was knock down that was an untruth, the people that could understand each other left together base on ethnicity of each son of Noah. They stopped building the city the Bible said. The Black people called the Sumerians returned and finish the city a century later. Babylon always belong to Ham's children even when Nebuchadnezzar's and the Chaldeans took over it and made it the capital of their kingdom. The priest and astrologers of the Chaldean united with the astrologers of the Cushites and Canaanites that were the main people of the city. Biblically She and Ham intermingle for centuries before Japheth's children became powerful and in control. The Bible and history both proves this factually.

It also was not the papacy power because it did not exist during the time of the prophets or the apostles! It was Jerusalem who always was rebuilt and exist and it was IsraEL that killed both the prophets and the apostles. It is today symbolizing a city of confusion that inhabit cages of every unclean and hateful birds (religions) who are controlled by evil spirits and they are under the command of the devil Satan. Now what commentary states that, this easy truth that can only comes through THE POWER of THE HOLY SPIRIT who will lead those who diligently seek HIM through prayer!

So, I do not rely on commentaries I do use them to assist if they relate their writings exactly like what the Bible says. Example of this when I learned what a cherub really is. Ezekiel 10:14, it is the ox face and all of the old commentaries says exactly that except Henry. 

Happy Sabbath and blessings!

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I love the Anchor Bible, and also like the Interpreters Bible (a bit liberal but good sources) and the New International Commentaries (a bit conservative, but again good sources.) Also, depending on the book there are interesting single volumes. I just finished reading "Paul among the Ecologists"   a commentary on Romans by Sigve Tonstad. It was outstanding. Currently reading Tonstad's commentary on Revelation. Have not started yet but I also bought his commentary on Job. Dr. Tonstad is a professor at Loma Linda University. I am shocked as to how good his commentaries are!!!

In the 1980s the church had spent money on some good in depth studies including new commentaries (paperbacks). I was able to get a couple of them, but was poor at the time. They were fantastic but sadly the church was having people buy their more superficial books and not the deep study books and had to stop (Yes, that is what the church complained about in our magazines in an appeal to encourage members to buy the deep study books). If you can find some of them at used book sales they are well worth your time and money and please let me know as I'd love to get more.

 In the 1960s there was also a fantastic commentary on the book of Revelation titled "The time of the End" by George McCready Price. (You can read it online). If you can mix Price's book, and get a hold of recordings from the "Last Day Events" seminar at the 1976 Southern New England Campmeeting, get Richard Nies "Last Day events" Sigve Tonstad's commentary on Revelation, and a Lutheran, Craig Koester commentary (in the anchor Bible series) and/or Koester's lectures on Revelation on the great courses program, between the 5 sources (Price, Wood/Southern New England Campmeeting, Nies, Tonstad and Koester) you would find fantastic information on Revelation. (and they also correct each other, for example Dr. Nies took the chapter saying that the plagues will fall in a day and later an hour" as prophetic time and that Satan wanted to have a year, but will only have two weeks, while Wood points out that in the culture the phrases "In a day" "In an hour" simply means a short time.  Tonstad points out where he  disagrees with Koester and so far I've sided more with Tonstad on those points.) I would love to get these 5 books into every Adventist home (as well as some others that are not Revelation, namely John Bright's a history of Israel, Aharoni's The Land of The Bible, The Macmillan Bible Atlas, Henri Frankfort and others Before Philosophy and the works by Abraham Joshua Heschel, and Heschel has a commentary on the Prophets which is outstanding). 

While these are not Adventists, outside of the Anchor Bible, some authors of commentaries that I find impressive are Eric and Carol Meyers, and Ellen Davis. 

Now a rule of thumb that they taught us at both Atlantic Union College and Andrews University, as well as the Jerusalem Center for Biblical studies is that the day a commentary is printed that it is about 30 years out of date. They recommended this higharchy for Bible study: 1. Read the text. 2. Use concordances to look up which Hebrew, Aramaic or Greek word is used and other texts that use the same word. 3. Theological Word books that look at the words in different texts (and look in journals for new discoveries of the words in other ancient writings to get a better picture as to how the word is used). 4. Histories and geographies such as Bright's History of Israel, Aharoni's The Land of the Bible and MacMillan Bible Atlas. Once you read these you can better judge what you read in commentaries and can teach a freshman level college class on the Bible. 5. Classic archaeology and history books outside of the ones listed in #4, such as by people like Albright, Frankfort (PS: Frankfort's book "before Philosophy" can help us to understand 1844) 6. Journals (can be pricey but where the information that in about 30 years will make it into a commentary are being introduced and discussed) then at level 7 comes the commentaries. Level 8 are the less scholarly books.  

While this is not a commentary as such, you can also find fantastic information from Dr. Jim Fleming from Biblical Resources LLC and Biblical History Center in La Grange GA. Go to Biblical Resources LLC and look at his Seminar Notebooks. 

I hope this helps!

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Gregory Matthews

Just as a point of information:

Andrews University is in the process of publishing a 2-book commentary on the Bible.  The first book is on the Old Testament, and it runs 1,158 pages in length.  The normal price for it is $50.  However, it has sold for $35.

The second book on the New Testament, is not yet off the press.

 

 

 

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I have a Strong's/Smith Bible Dictionary combo book I bought on Amazon. It has 1177 pages total. The print is almost microscopic. You have to turn your head sideways and squint to see it. 

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Oh, I forgot to recommend the commentary on Genesis by Jacques Doukhan. He also has an excellent (but usually expensive, I found an affordable used copy) of Hebrew for Theologians. Before getting to the language he deals with Hebrew thought. And since I'm here I should also recommend Bowman's "Hebrew Thought compared to Greek" Again not commentaries, but along with Frankfort's "Before Philosophy" will give you an excellent background to how the Bible writer's thought and thus a tremendous aid in reading their works as well as being about to judge comments in commentaries. 

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Theophilus, Checking to see if you found our comments useful and if you or anyone else have anything else to add to this.  Commentaries can really help us see other things. I recently learned three amazing things:

1. While I understood Jesus bearing the crown of thorns was for the non-human creation and thus indicated that our beloved pets will be in heaven. But I had never noticed before that this is what the book of Romans says quite bluntly. 

2. I have assumed that Revelation 1:7 about every eye shall see him even those who pierced him and all the nations will wail because of him, was a cry of despair when they see Jesus. But the text is a quote from a longer passage in Zech. 12: 10 - 13:1 where it teaches that those who pierced him and others are crying more than any other tears that were ever shed, more than tears over the death of a child or a beloved public figure are not the tears of  despair, but tears of repentance and being overwhelmed by gratitude at God's love and forgiveness for them. Even as we read the verses on either side of Revelation 1:7 it is all about redemption. These are people crying not because of the fear of what they think God is about to do to them, but people who are overwhelmed at God's grace.  Tears of sadness, pain, despair are not going to win out. The deepest tears will be the tears of joy that Jesus loves us sinners as much as we will realize when we see him. 

3. The 7th trumpet: Maybe because of the beauty in Handel's music I have always pictured as the second coming and Jesus coming to rule. But I've again taken the text out of context. 6 trumpets sound. After the 6th trumpet people cursed God. There is the little scroll that is sweet in the mouth but bitter in the stomach. We rightly have an application to the disappointment on Oct 23, 1844. (This is not the only great disappointment, God does not mind hanging out with people who suffer great disappointments). But the specific context is that people who where preaching the gospel had joy in the message but a great disappointment as to the apparent dismal results. But the message is to preach again. With the preaching again, and the events of the 2 witnesses, we find that at the end of this situation there is a very large conversion, large enough for the Bible to say that the kingdoms of this world has become, no longer the kingdom of Satan and slander about God, but has become his kingdom. And this prepares the world to face the final crisis of those who choose rest (Sabbath) or choose no rest, as these two groups face the 7 last plagues. 

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Hi! for some reason, i did not receive notification of your responses in my emails.

Yes, your responses have helped a great deal.

I am floored about what you wrote about the Crown of thorns, and would love for you to explain it to me.

For many years, I have had ferrets,and like all pet owners I loved them.They were a joy. When Joey died, he was buried in the back yard, and I was asked if instead I wanted him cremated.  As Ellen White said about William Miller, IMO, angels mark Joey's grave. I asked that he be buriedAriel was in another state when she died. Ihave her remains. She is with me.   Here are pictures of them/

joey crig.jpg

ariel.jpg

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On 9/12/2020 at 2:44 PM, stinsonmarri said:

It is today symbolizing a city of confusion that inhabit cages of every unclean and hateful birds (religions) who are controlled by evil spirits and they are under the command of the devil Satan. Now what commentary states that, this easy truth that can only comes through THE POWER of THE HOLY SPIRIT who will lead those who diligently seek HIM through prayer!

I learned from Walter Veith that birds represent spirits. The Holy Spirit descended as a dove ( a clean animal). Unclean and hateful birds would be evil spirits, which falls right in line with  condition of the world. It makes sense to me.

 

In Zechariah 5:9-11, we see this:Then I raised my eyes and looked, and there were two women, coming with the wind in their wings; for they had wings like the wings of a stork, and they lifted up the basket between earth and heaven. So I said to the angel who talked with me, “Where are they carrying the basket?” And he said to me, “To build a house for it in the land of Shinar; when it is ready, the basket will be set there on its base.”

The 2 women had wings of storks--unclean birds. the women represent the RC church and apostate protestantism.

 

 

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The suffering and death of animals are part of the curse on the ground for human's sake. Jesus bearing the crown of thorns was for this curse. Back at Atlantic Union College, Dr. Jim Valentine pointed this out and the connection to our beloved pets. 

This summer reading Paul among the Ecologists, https://www.amazon.com/Letter-Romans-Paul-among-Ecologists/dp/191092802X and using The Kingdom New Testament by N. T. Wright where the text is even clearer. I have handy here the NIV Romans 8:21 "that the creation itself will be liberated from it's bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.[ Vs 22] We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.

Now who is this creation that we brought into bondage to decay which is awaiting their freedom from death and decay at the time of the glorification of the children of God? It's animals!!!! Our dear pets. Read all of Romans 8.  Thank you for sharing the pictures of your friends!!! 

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