- Christianity Today Number 1 Critics Choice for Commentaries (1991)
The First Epistle of Peter constitutes an important work of New Testament theology and pastoral care, serves as an example of how the early church applied Jesus' sayings and the Old Testament writings to contemporary concerns, and presents some extremely useful perspectives on living the Christian life today. This commentary by Peter Davids does an excellent job of mining the rich wealth of instruction to be found in this very significant section of Scripture.
David's commentary contains several notable features: a unique grasp of 1 Peter's structure, a systematically arranged introduction that summarizes the commentary proper, a perceptive excursus on suffering in 1 Peter and the New Testament, David's own study translation, thorough and incisive comments on each verse of the text, frequent parallels to ancient literature, an exceptionally clear and lively writing style, and one of the most comprehensive bibliographies on 1 Peter available anywhere.
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
Peter H. Davids is professor of biblical theology at St. Stephen's University, St. Stephen, New Brunswick. He is also the author of the Pillar New Testament Commentary volume on 2 Peter and Jude and the coeditor of Dictionary of the Later New Testament and Its Development.
David's commentary is well researched, conversationally written, and exegetically helpful. It is particularly perceptive in its treatment of 'the spirits in prison' (3:19), the preaching to those who have died (4:6), and the role of Silas as Peter's secretary (5:12). Especially useful for seminary students and intelligent laity, this book is a worthy part of a distinguished series.