Neville F. Rees
01 February, 2009 1 min read

This is a well-produced commentary on the book of Lamentations, which the author describes as ‘Living in the ruins’. Is it aimed at the ordinary Christian or is it more for the Bible student? The answer is probably both.

It serves the ordinary Christian because it is well written and composed, with good subject headings. For example, the first chapter of Lamentations is divided into two sections: Grief observed (vv. 1–11) and Grief felt (vv. 12–22).

Each verse is carefully commented on and there is a ‘Reflection’ after each section that highlights six or so points from the passage to think over. For example, after the commentary on 2:1–10 (‘Under the cloud of God’s wrath’) the reader is encouraged to reflect on divine wrath, stating that ‘God’s wrath is not the essence of God in the way in which his love or holiness is. God’s wrath is the response of his holiness to the sin of a rebellious creation’.

But the commentary may be more directed at the theological student, being full of theological emphases couched in the Hebrew language — the author is a recognised Hebrew scholar. However, for the layman, he does explain everything carefully and the subject and Scripture indexes are valuable.

Overall, this is another worthwhile and instructive commentary to the series (previously published were Exodus and Jeremiah).

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