Bruner on the Gospel of John

Our work on the commentary and reference survey with Kregel Publications is continuing to move forward. Recently Dr. Joe Fantin received an examination copy of Bruner's new commentary on the Gospel of John for consideration, and here is the entry he wrote which will be included when our work is complete.

★★  Bruner, Frederick Dale. The Gospel of John: A Commentary (Eerdmans, 2011). xxx + 1281 pp. $$$

Approach: The intended audience includes serious Bible students, teachers, and pastors. This volume takes a unique approach that places exegesis within the larger framework of history of interpretation. To some extent these can be separated in the volume; however, their presence within the same work enhances both.

Format: The volume has no introduction. The table of contents functions as an outline. The commentary is divided into three large sections: chapters 1-12; 13-17; 18-21. Within these sections each chapter generally has its own brief introduction with an outline and is divided into smaller literary units. Each literary unit usually includes four elements: (1) the author’s translation; (2) an introduction consisting of short quotations from interpreters of John and other relevant works; (3) the author’s interpretation; (4) a selective survey of important interpretations throughout the history of the church. The exposition is generally verse-by-verse. Name and subject indices are included in the end matter.

Usability: Useful for various purposes. The presentation of the author’s interpretation alongside others’ makes this a unique volume. Bruner has chosen much valuable material from other commentators. The author’s interpretation may be too technical for some, but it is readable and includes many helpful personal applications. This work would best serve as a companion to a separate technical commentary.