Item description for Matthew (Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible) by Stanley Hauerwas...
Overview Matthew, the third volume in the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible, brings the stimulating insights of one of today's most exciting theologians to the first Gospel. This commentary, like each in the series, is designed to serve the church--through aid in preaching, teaching, study groups, and so forth--and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of the Bible.
Publishers Description "Matthew "is the third volume in the forty-volume Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible. This commentary, like each in the series, is designed to serve the church--through aid in preaching, teaching, study groups, and so forth--and demonstrate the continuing intellectual and practical viability of theological interpretation of the Bible.
Citations And Professional Reviews Matthew (Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible) by Stanley Hauerwas has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Publishers Weekly - 11/20/2006 page 10
Christian Century - 08/07/2007 page 38
Books & Culture - 05/01/2008 page 12
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Studio: Brazos Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.3" Width: 6.38" Height: 1.01" Weight: 1.1 lbs.
Release Date Jan 1, 2007
Publisher Baker Publishing Group
Series Brazos Theological Commentary
Series Number 3
ISBN 1587430959 ISBN13 9781587430954
Availability 0 units.
More About Stanley Hauerwas
Stanley Hauerwas (PhD, Yale University) is the Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke University. His previous books include "Cross-Shattered Christ, Performing the Faith, The Peaceable Kingdom, With the Grain of the Universe, A Better Hope, "and "Christian Existence Today."
Reviews - What do customers think about Matthew (Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible)?
from sentimentality to subversion Nov 28, 2007
As I write there are now four volumes published in Brazos's projected forty-volume series of theological commentaries on the Bible. Jaroslav Pelikan led the series with a masterful study of the book of Acts (2005), Peter Leithart studied 1-2 Kings (2006), Matthew Levering wrote on Ezra and Nehemiah (2007), and in the present volume Stanley Hauerwas of Duke University tackles the gospel of Matthew. My own experience of reading Bible commentaries has often been frustrating; their linguistic dissection of verb tenses and technical comparisons of what other scholars have written has generally left me spiritually hungry. The Brazos series moves to theological reflection, and I have been very grateful for the volumes by Pelikan and Hauerwas that I've read.
Matthew's gospel, Hauerwas reminds us, is not intended to provide mere theological information (although it does do that). Rather, it's a manual to train and transform us into disciples of Jesus, for "Jesus the Son of God is what Matthew is all about." In contrast to the many ways that we sentimentalize the gospel, the kingdom that Jesus announced is nothing less than a radically subversive and alternative way of life. The Jesus way unmasks our own deep anxieties, our denials of our dependency, the "legitimating stories" of our modern world, and our doomed attempts to secure our own (illusory) salvation on our own terms by work, politics, money, sex, power, reputation, etc. "There is a kind of madness," says Hauerwas, "with being a disciple of Jesus."
Hauerwas takes a simple approach to organization, devoting one chapter to each chapter of Matthew. Readers who are familiar with his many other works will not be surprised to find heavy doses of Augustine, Barth, Bonhoeffer, and Yoder. Hauerwas is at his prophetic best in pointing us to the disruption and offense provoked by the Gospel. On the third page of his book he observes that "after Jesus there is no 'normal,' or, put differently, after Jesus we are able to live 'normally' only because of his extraordinary work." And then on the next-to-the last page: "The problem, after all, is not belief in the resurrection, but whether we live lives that would make sense if in fact Jesus has not been raised from the dead." The way of discipleship, then, is difficult, but it's not dismal. Rather, it's the only true way of genuine human joy.
Excellent work Sep 4, 2007
This is an excellent volume for ministers, teachers, and students. Hauerwas did an outstanding job of explaining the temptations Jesus experienced in the desert. His overall treatment of the Sermon on the Mount was also excellent. I wish Hauerwas would have been more specific with the details. Because he is such a profound thinker, it would have been nice to know his conclusions concerning each detail. This commentary, however, is an excellent source for giving the overall feel of Matthew's gospel. It is well worth the price and a source I always use when teaching Matthew.
Finally....a book on discipleship that's actually Christocentric!!! Jun 1, 2007
Stanley Hauerwas' theological commentary on Matthew approaches this Gospel from a thematic standpoint, largely centered on the implications of following Christ. Hauerwas' also addresses relevant topics such as abortion, homosexuality and marriage in a timely, penetrating way. Throughout this volume, Hauerwas interacts with the writings of theologians such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Karl Barth and John Howard Yoder. As expected, Christian ethics and pacifism are well explicated at key points throughout this book. He gently challenges the Reformational understanding that views the Sermon on the Mount as Law rather than Gospel, and argues that it reflects the obligations now placed upon all who call themselves Christians. His explanation of the relationship between Israel and the Church is seemingly vague, which undoubtedly will frustrate both Dispensationalists and Covenantalists alike. At one point, he seems to question the eternal nature of the human soul by implication without explicitly denying it. Interestingly, he interprets Jesus' reference in Matthew 24:15 to 'the abomination that causes desolation' from Daniel 9:27 as a prediction of Christ's own crucifixion, which brought about the subsequent end of the Jewish Temple system. The section on Matthew 24 and 25 contains a healthy discussion about the nature of apocalyptic literature and its relationship to our anticipation of the Second Coming. It is a welcome corrective to the paranoia peddled by the authors of the Left Behind series. Hauerwas' interpretative decisions clearly demonstrate his familiarity with current Matthean scholarship. My only minor quibble is that he doesn't articulate why he chose one particular interpretation over another. This is especially important when dealing with passages like Matthew 24:15. I recommeng that those planning to preach or teach through Matthew supplement Hauerwas' volume, which only offers broad commentary on each chapter and subsequently doesn't address the entire text of Matthew, with R.T. France's The Gospel of Matthew in the NICNT series, which is the most thorough commentary on this Gospel currently available.
Christians need to see why some interpretations are more viable than others. This is one of the primary reasons why people consult commentaries in the first place. While it's true that more linguistically-oriented exegetical commentaries already do this, it would be refreshing for the Brazos Theological Commentary to explain why certain interpretations are THEOLOGICALLY correct while others are erroneous. Hopefully, subsequent volumes will contain such helpful guidance whenever warranted (Particularly Geoffrey Wainwright's volume on Revelation). Offering specific theological defenses of particular interpretations versus other options would be a very useful void for subsequent volumes in this series to fill. It would also make each volume even more useful for preaching and teaching. I certainly hope that series editor, R. R. Reno, will move future volumes in this direction.
Even when I disagreed with some of Hauerwas' observations, I was still thankful for his willingness to be provocative in constructive ways. All of his provocative statements are certainly plausible rather than improbable and will stretch one out of their comfort zone. This commentary will serve pastors, teachers and laypeople immensely as they endeavor to follow Christ in our increasingly complex world. Hauerwas gives plenty of good insight that will greatly enrich sermons, Sunday school classes, Bible studies, and times of private reflection. Above all, it will challenge anyone who reads it to count the cost of following Christ. Highly recommended, regardless of one's theological persuasion!
Hauerwas can actually write theo-poetically? No way... well... actually, yeah. Jan 10, 2007
Never have I been so excited about preaching from Matthew. Hauerwas brings his best into this commentary.
Edit: Because of comments to my review, I guess I'll add more. Hauerwas does an interesting thing with this commentary that is uncommon with any commentary I have read - it flows like a poetic narrative. This is appreciated on many levels as Hauerwas is known for thick descriptions and dissection of various topics in essay form. This is different.
Hauerwas has always been one of my theological heroes. I like his plain talking that gets straight to the point in a scathing kind of way. In this book we see that, but it feels more like a devotional for... academic theologians.
This is not a commentary that will break down every word. It will not be separated in sections of "Behind the Text" or "How this applies to our everyday life". The commentary functions more as this is how Hauerwas reads and reflects on the book of Matthew one or two chapters at a time.