New Collegeville Bible Commentary: First And Second Chronicles
John C. Endres, SJ
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In the era in which the Chronicler writes, the pressing question is: How will Judeans reestablish themselves after the Babylonian exile? The Chronicler’s answer is to encourage the people of Israel to live out of their memory of God’s mercy and compassion. Knowing and cherishing the books of Samuel and Kings, the writer interprets their message differently because the people of his era face new challenges to their life and faith. This commentary highlights the special character of First and Second Chronicles by pointing out subtle ways in which the Chronicler changes the story of Israel. Many of these slight changes in wording reflect theological shifts in the postexilic era. The Chronicler sees a need for a strong spiritual center that is clearly located in the Jerusalem temple and its life of worship and prayer. Alienated northern tribes may enter this religious world by participating in temple worship. New and original materials describe the services and the roles of Levites and priests at the temple. Kings foster worship and demonstrate a spirituality of repentance. Israel can again become a people united if all join together in worship. To the discouraged, this history offers hope!
John C. Endres, SJ, has been teaching Old Testament / Hebrew Bible at the Jesuit School of Theology (in Berkeley) of Santa Clara University since 1982. He was chief editor of Chronicles and Its Synoptic Parallels in the Books of Samuel, Kings, and Related Biblical Texts (Liturgical Press). He also writes and teaches on the Psalms, the deuterocanonical books, Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Book of Jubilees.
As King David served the Lord with worship and music, John C. Endres, SJ, serves the readers of this commentary with fine scholarship and a pastoral style. The Chronicler retold the history of Israel for the benefit of a post-exilic audience centered on the temple and Endres explains the Chronicler's retelling for all who wish to study this fascinating view of Israel's history. This commentary presumes no specialized knowledge and is ideal for anyone wishing to delve more deeply into these important but often neglected books.
Stephen J. Binz, writer-speaker, author of Introduction to the Bible: A Catholic Guide to Studying Scripture, The God of Freedom and Life, and Advent of the Savior
John Endres loves Chronicles and leads us to an affection for these books too. His clear explanation of the meaning of the long introductory genealogy gives us reason to read these chapters we ordinarily (admit it!) skip. Through the rest of the commentary we not only find the history but we realize the significance of post-exilic prayer and the joy that accompanies it. Everywhere Endres gives careful attention to the literary style, the themes, and the relationship of Chronicles to Samuel and Kings.
Irene Nowell, OSB, Adjunct Professor of Theology, St. John's University School of Theology
Product number: 2844
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Publication Date: 03/01/2012
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