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NICNT: The Epistle to the Colossians, to Philemon, and to the Ephesians

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  • Evangelical Christian Publishers Association Gold Medallion award for Commentaries (1985)
  • Named one of the Best 100 Academic Christian Books by Present Testimony Ministries

Product Details

The collection of three commentaries in one volume is the final work in F.F. Bruce's lifelong study of Paul's writings. According to Bruce, there are important reasons for linking Colossians, Philemon, and Ephesians together in one work. He maintains that Ephesians continues the line of thought followed in Colossians — in particular because it draws out the implications of Christ's cosmic role (set forth in Colossians) for the church, which is his body. At the same time Ephesians constitutes the crown of Pauline thought, gathering up the main themes of the apostle's teaching into a unified presentation. The letter to Philemon, too, with a close association to Colossians, is appropriately included in this volume.

About the New International Commentary New Testament Series

“. . . undertaken to provide earnest students of the New Testament with an exposition that is thorough and abreast of modern scholarship and at the same time loyal to the Scriptures as the infallible Word of God.”

This statement reflects the underlying purpose of The New International Commentary on the New Testament. Begun in the late 1940s by an international team of New Testament scholars, the NICNT series has become recognized by pastors, students, and scholars alike as a critical yet orthodox commentary marked by solid biblical scholarship within the evangelical Protestant tradition.

While based on a thorough study of the Greek text, the commentary introductions and expositions contain a minimum of Greek references. The NICNT authors evaluate significant textual problems and take into account the most important exegetical literature. More technical aspects — such as grammatical, textual, and historical problems — are dealt with in footnotes, special notes, and appendixes.

Under the general editorship of three outstanding New Testament scholars — first Ned Stonehouse (Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia), then F. F. Bruce (University of Manchester, England), and now Gordon D. Fee (Regent College, Vancouver, British Columbia) — the NICNT series has continued to develop over the years. In order to keep the commentary “new” and conversant with contemporary scholarship, the NICNT volumes have been — and will be — revised or replaced as necessary.

The newer NICNT volumes in particular take into account the role of recent rhetorical and sociological inquiry in elucidating the meaning of the text, and they also exhibit concern for the theology and application of the text. As the NICNT series is ever brought up to date, it will continue to find ongoing usefulness as an established guide to the New Testament text.

About the Author

F.F. Bruce (1910-1990) was Rylands Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis at the University of Manchester, England. During his distinguished career he wrote numerous commentaries and books, including Paul: Apostle of the Heart Set Free and The Acts of the Apostles: Greek Text with Introduction and Commentary. He served as general editor of the NICNT series from 1962 to 1990.


Here is [F.F. Bruce's] massive learning, thorough acquaintance with the ancient world, careful and cautious assessment of theories, love of Paul, and straightforward exposition of what Paul was saying. The student who works carefully through this volume will not only learn the main outlines of scholarly debate but will come to an understanding of the theological message of these letters.
Expository Times