Of the writing of commentaries on Romans there is no end.  Although one or two reviewers of earlier editions of this Survey have criticized me for saying so, with distinct lack of repentance I continue to think that the best Romans commentary for pastors available in English is still the work of Douglas J. Moo (New International Commentary, 1996).  It is becoming a bit dated now, and its introduction is thin, but Moo exhibits extraordinary good sense in his exegesis.  No less important, his is the first commentary to cull what is useful from the new perspective on Paul while, nevertheless, offering telling criticisms of many of its exegetical and theological stances.  The combination of the strong exegesis and the rigorous interaction makes the work superior to another commentary of similar length, that of Thomas R. Schreiner (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament, 1998).  Only the most poorly trained pastor will prefer Moo’s NIV Application Commentary on Romans (2000) to his NIC volume.  Not quite as lengthy as either of these two, but more recent, is the Pillar New Testament Commentary by Colin G. Kruse (2012).  Kruse writes with clarity, verve, and good judgment, making this work another favorite for pastors.

This is not to say that these are the longest or most detailed commentaries on Romans now available.  Rather dated but undoubtedly important is the “new” International Critical Commentary work by C. E. B. Cranfield (2 volumes; 1975-1979).  Occasionally, Cranfield seems more influenced by Barth than by Paul but, for thoughtful exegesis of the Greek text with a careful weighing of alternative positions, there is nothing quite like it.  It is rare that a commentary provides students with an education in grammatical exegesis.  An abbreviated (320 pages) edition is also available that makes fewer demands on the reader (T&T Clark/Eerdmans, 1985).

From: New Testament Commentary Survey by D. A. Carson; 7th edition (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2013), pp. 82-83.  Italics in the original.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s