The Corner

New Catholic Study New Testament

I recently got hold of an advance copy of Ignatius Press’s Ignatius Catholic Study Bible New Testament, and I recommend it strongly for Catholic parish Bible study groups and for personal reading. (While Catholic distinctives are addressed in the notes, the tone is not that of hectoring apologetics; typical Protestant readers, therefore, can profit from reading them. The only reason I don’t go particularly out of my way to recommend the book to that audience is that Protestants already have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to study Bibles, while this book meets a long-unmet need among Catholics for a conservative Bible resource.) The articles are impressively lucid — I was quite taken, in particular, with the editors’ fascinating suggested explanation for why Luke may have been right, after all, about the census of Quirinius; and their exposition of why Paul’s doctrine on faith and works does not conflict with that of James.  The book is, in addition, quite a bargain — 711 large-format pages, with very clear print and maps, for $21.95, or, at Amazon, $14.93. Kudos to Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch, who developed the book.

Hahn was a Presbyterian minister and is a Catholic convert, and his work combines the former’s love of Scripture with the latter’s love of the broader tradition of historical Western Christianity. (If he shepherds through an Old Testament volume of proportionate size to this one, he will also deserve credit for improving the physical fitness of any readers who chooses to carry it around without a wheelbarrow.)

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