The Paroikos Bible Blog exists as a resource to those interested in Biblical studies and Koine Greek. It is hoped that this blog will simultaneously provide food-for-thought to the reader while pointing him or her in the direction of valuable resources, both in print and on the internet, that will further help his or her studies in the Word.

Jan 11, 2018

Lexham Bible Guide: 1 Peter (a Research Commentary)

I am excited to announce the Lexham Bible Guide: 1 Peter. This has been my first project for Lexham Press/Logos (though hopefully not my last). Up until this point, my published work on 1 Peter has consisted of Foreknowledge and Social Identity in 1 Peter (published by Wipf&Stock), "Peter and the Prophetic Word," an article attempting to develop a Petrine theology of prophecy  (Bulletin for Biblical Research), and an article on 1 Peter's use of Isa 28:16 in 1 Peter 2:6, also in Bulletin for Biblical Research, vol. 26.2 (2016); I also have a forthcoming article in Evangelical Quarterly on the intersection between social-scientific criticism, biblical theology, and ethics in 1 Peter.

Although John Elliott once famously quipped that 1 Peter was the "exegetical step-child" of the New Testament, I can happily say that is no longer the case. I had a wealth of material to draw from, including a plethora of solid commentaries. 1 Peter is neglected no more (which is more than can be said for 2 Peter and Jude . . . .).

The publisher's website describes The Lexham Bible Guide series as "The starting point for study and research," and I believe that's an apt description. The books in the series are, in a sense, commentaries, but not verse-by-verse. For my own contribution on 1 Peter, I would suggest it would be appropriate to see it as a research commentary that pays special attention to the specific, controversial issues within 1 Peter and to 1 Peter's intersection with theological themes elsewhere in Scripture, while functioning as a guide for the reader regarding the best secondary sources (both available in Logos and those outside of Logos) for studying this epistle.

This commentary/guide breaks up 1 Peter into discourse units (with justification) and then for each unit generally covers the following (though not all sections have extended word studies or background overviews): 1. Overview, 2. Structure, 3. Place within the book (i.e., its role as a discourse unit within 1 Peter, structurally and theologicaly), 4. Place within the Canon (i.e., how 1 Peter's theological intersects with the theology of the rest of Scripture), 5. Various key issues (where I lay out the various positions and make some comments on each; occasionally I'll have a strong opinion and put in my "two cents worth," but usually the point is to provide the reader with the data and the arguments, and let them come to their own conclusions), 6. word studies (in which I make it a point to not rely on lexicons, but rather focus on a word's use in the LXX and 1st century literature, especially Josephus; not all sections contain word studies), 7. background studies (not all sections contain background studies), and 8. application overview (this latter section, I believe, sets the Lexham Bible Guides apart from most commentaries).

In this research commentary, I cite somewhere between 300-350 sources. Seventeen of those were published in 2016, and three of those were published in 2017 (including Dennis Edward's Story of God Commentary on 1 Peter and my friend Timothy Miller's recent BibSac article on 1 Peter 3:1-17). I especially cite those sources that are easily accessible to the Logos user within the Logos system: needless to say, the commentaries by Karen Jobes, Peter Davids, Paul Achtemeier, and John Elliott feature prominently, as well as (to my pleasant surprise, since I had been previously unfamiliar with it) Catherine Gonz├ílez's recent theological commentary. However, I don't stop there, since the point of this research commentary series is to introduce the reader to all (or almost all; I doubt that I caught everything!) significant publications on a particular issue (including foreign language sources). Consequently,  I introduce the reader to important resources outside of Logos, such as numerous significant articles by Travis Williams and David Horrell, the work of Reinhard Feldmeier, etc.

In summary, this is meant to be a starting point for research and a general overview of the content and controversial issues within first Peter (and yes, I spend a lot of space discussing "Christ preaching to the spirits in prison"!). I hope the reader will consider adding it to his or her Logos library.