If you’ve been wanting to dig a little deeper into the Bible but are intimidated by the dense and technical academic commentaries, then we have an excellent option for you—the Opening Up the Bible commentary series.

This is a series designed for study, so you could consider it a bridge between a study Bible and a more academic commentary. You can think of this series as an entry-level commentary with a lot of the features of an academic commentary, but without the technical detail. Let’s see what it has to offer.

Book Contents

A brief look at the table of contents shows that the chapters of the commentary follow the chapters of the biblical book, in this case, 1 Corinthians by the late author and pastor Derek Prime. The commentaries for some of the longer narrative books in Scripture will often tackle several chapters of the bible in one chapter of the commentary. This approach by the authors and editors helps keep the biblical storyline in view and avoids getting lost in all the technical details of the text, while also keeping each volume of the commentary series to a reasonable length.

Book Overview, Background, and Summary

An Overview is provided in each volume of the series, introducing the setting and context of the book. The map and timeline provided in the overview section shows the geographical and chronological setting of the book.

The Background and Summary of the book provides the reader with a basic understanding of the occasion and subject matter of the letter. For example, the author of the volume on 1 Corinthians provides several lists identifying the contributions of 1 Corinthians.

1 Corinthians has a number of distinctive features. It . . .

  • Is one of the earliest New Testament books to be written, most likely in the mid 50s AD.
  • Gives a comprehensive insight into the problems faced by a church in pagan society.
  • Lays down principles for church order and discipline not found elsewhere in the New Testament (chapters 5 and 6).
  • Provides important instruction regarding divorce and remarriage.
  • Gives the New Testament’s most detailed discussion of spiritual gifts (chapters 12–14).
  • Supplies the most systematic exposition of the Christian hope of physical resurrection (chapter 15).

1 Corinthians is unique in the New Testament in showing the wide spectrum of problems that an early church encountered.

We may identify nine major difficulties, all of which have lessons to teach us. They are:

Questions for Further Study, to Think About, and Discuss

At the end of each chapter there are two sets of questions. The first set of questions helps the reader think a little deeper about the text. The second set of questions are more along the lines of application questions. Here’s what they look like for the first chapter of 1 Corinthians.

Learn More with the Opening Up the Bible Commentary Series

We are glad to offer this series for our app. The Opening Up the Bible series is a great place to start for those wanting to get more out of their Bible study but don’t necessarily want to invest in a technical and academic commentary set. You can learn more about this series and see which volumes are available in our store by following the link below.

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