Jonah (Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible)
By Phillip Cary
Hopefully at this exact time, I’m hanging out in Nyambaare, playing with children, knitting on Madli’s Shawl, handing out first aid kits, and possibly teaching people how to use toothbrushes and triple antibiotic ointment. I could make up knitting news to complain about (ruddy nupps; I guarantee you I’m sick of yarn overs by now), but rather than create fiction, we’ll take a brief hiatus to return to:
Reviews by Reb
The book above, Jonah by Professor Phil Cary, is what I’m almost finished reading during my devotional time. Officially it is a commentary, but as it is part of a series written by theologians rather than Biblical scholars. I don’t know whether it’s because of this fact or just because of Dr. Cary’s writing style, but it’s the only book I’ve ever read that could be used as a devotional, as a commentary, or as a text for teaching a class or Bible study on the book of Jonah.
I cannot rave enough about how well this book is written. After all dear Dr. C got on our cases about our writing in class, it’s nice to see for myself that he actually practices what he preaches. And it pays off – how else would have a person like me, who can’t bring myself pick up anything that’s not fiction, pick it up almost as light reading? Not that the content is light, but it is written whimsically. It’s faith-filled, and generally helps you see the most deeply significant and touching moments in the text for what they are.
Most unexpected was how Dr. Cary exegetes the text from the point of view of the original readers: post-exilic Jews living after the time of Nehemiah. If you’ve ever read the book of Jonah and thought that the moral of the story at the end is “Don’t be a whiney brat,” there is so much more to the story. But I don’t want to spoil the ending, so go read it for yourself.