Thursday, February 13, 2014

Book Review - Prophet On The Run: A Devotional Commentary on the Book Of Jonah by Baruch Maoz

I was not disappointed in the reading of this short devotional commentary on the book of Jonah. So many commentaries tend to much moralization of the stories, completely missing the more important and larger themes present in the story.  This commentary does a good job of placing the story in its appropriate place in the history of redemption, foreshadowing a greater prophet to come who will extend salvation to all nations.

Since this is a devotional commentary and not a study commentary, the reader should not expect detailed discussion of words and issues scholars would find interesting.  Rather the reader will find appropriate material about the context, a careful observation of what the text says, and then appropriate comments on the meaning of the text, which is supported by numerous cross references to New Testament passages.  These New Testament cross references then serve to help bridge the gap between the original audience and what meaning God intended for us.  The author’s good application questions peppered throughout the text will prove helpful to the reader who takes the time to meditate on the text and honestly answer the application question.

Since the author’s stated goal for the book is “to give the reader a graphic sense of the message of the book of Jonah, taking into account the particularities of the Hebrew…” he provides his own translation of the book. I think this adds to the value of the book and helps the author achieve his goal.

I found the format of the commentary helpful. Following a discussion of the verses in each chapter is a helpful summary, a prayer based on the chapter and then some discussion questions.  So we don’t miss the big picture, the author has final summary questions for the whole book.

I received this book for free from Shepherd Press via Cross Focused Reviews for this review. I was not required to write a positive review.