The Reformation Commentary on Scripture follows the ancient practice of biblical commentary in catena, in which the scriptural texts are elucidated by chains of passages collected from the authoritative insights of the church’s great exegetes. Each volume will consist of the collected comments and wisdom of the reformers collated around the text of the Bible. Thus, this series will be a unique tool for the spiritual and theological reading of scripture and a vital help for teaching and preaching.
This series, as Timothy George notes, “is committed to the renewal of the church today through careful study and meditative reflection on the Old and New Testaments, the charter documents of Christianity, read in the context of the worshipping, believing community of faith across the centuries.”
With the Reformation Commentary on Scripture you have centralized access to treasure that very few can gather for themselves. The series will introduce you to the great diversity that constituted the Reformation, with commentary from Lutherans, Reformed, Anglican, Anabaptists and even reform-minded Catholics, who all shared a commitment to the faithful exposition of Scripture.
The Reformation Commentary on Scripture provides a crucial link between the contemporary church and the great cloud of witnesses that is the historical church. The biblical insights and rhetorical power of the tradition of the Reformation are here made available as a powerful tool for the church of the twenty-first century. Like never before, believers can feel they are a part of a genuine tradition of renewal as they faithfully approach the Scriptures.
In each volume of the Reformation Commentary on Scripture the reader will find the biblical text in English, from the English Standard Version (ESV), alongside the insights of the leaders of the Reformation, from the landmark figures such as Luther and Calvin to lesser-known commentators, such as Peter Martyr Vermigli, Johannes Oecompampadius, Martin Bucer, Johannes Brenz, Kaspar Cruciger, Jean Diodati and Kaspar Olevianus. Many of these texts are published in English for the first time.
We have been aided in the production of this series by the digitalization of original source material. Through use of the Digital Library of Classic Protestant Texts, a database managed by Alexander Street Press and comprised of digitized copies of original Reformation era texts, the scholars involved in this project have been able to comb through texts in their original sixteenth century format, in their original languages, and perform digital searches of the documents, facilitating the process of translation, abridgement, annotation and compilation.
Each volume is designed to facilitate a rich research experience for preachers and teachers. Each volume contains a unique introduction written by the volume editor, providing a reliable guide to the history of the period, the unique reception of the canon of the scripture and an orientation to the thinkers featured in the volume. Volumes also contain biographies of figures from the Reformation era, adding an essential reference for students of church history.
The editorial team for the Reformation Commentary on Scripture consists of an expert panel of ecumenical and international Reformation scholars. With their specialized expertise, they have judiciously selected biblical commentary from the Latin, German, Dutch, French and English language sources of the Reformation period—being vigilant to include the authoritative comments of many lesser-known figures whose witness has never before been available in English.
While the principal period for the commentary is the sixteenth century, the volume editors have carefully consulted the writings of some later figures, such as the early Puritans of the seventeenth century. They have also selected from appropriate earlier authors in the pre-Reformation era who displayed a careful concern for the text of scripture and chartered an exegetical course that fed into the Reformation (such as Jean Colet, Jacques Lefèvre d’Étaples and Desiderius Erasmus).
This series is guided by twin commitments to church renewal and scholarly integrity. To that end, under the guidance of Timothy George, series general editor, and Scott M. Manetsch, series associate editor, we have assembled an advisory board and team of volume editors who are actively involved in the life of the church and whose work has been recognized by peers as exhibiting diligence and credibility.