Quote of the Week

It may sound ridiculous to blog a post about a quote of the week, when I haven’t blogged much in the last month at all. I have hopefully emerged from the doldrums of the last month. Anyway, here is a great quotation from the Anchor Bible commentary on Jonah, written by Jack Sasson (p. 13):

I hold that commentators serve best when clarifying what lies before them instead of explaining what they imagine to have existed.

I would only add to this: if only some of the other Anchor Bible commentaries had listened or had this same perspective!


  1. May 2, 2015 at 10:21 pm

    I was reading a number of commentaries on a passage in 1 John this week, and in particular I was look at how these men understood a particular phrase in a verse. That phrase stands out and when we (most of us) first come to the text we probably stop and ask what does that mean? And so the commentator addresses that moreso than the rest of the passage giving all the options and coming to a conclusion. What I found in this particular instance is that many commentators practically started at the confusing/controversial phrase, and this led to differing interpretations of phrases/verses around it. It was quite sad because the context itself is very clear. And the context itself should’ve shown the meaning of the phrase in question instead of the other way around.

    This quote reminded me of that.

  2. May 3, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    The Anchor Bible commentary series – the first volume was published in 1964, and they ain’t done yet!

  3. Mark B. Hanson said,

    May 4, 2015 at 3:27 pm

    I can recommend the Anchor Bible commentary on Hosea for taking precisely that approach.

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