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Amos: Commentaries

F.I. Andersen & David Noel Freedman, Amos (Anchor Bible) Doubleday, 1989. pp.977. [Compare CBD's Price]
With 979 pages of smallish print this is probably the biggest ever commentary on Amos. With full and thorough discussion of most of the important issues. It majors on the ideas that Andersen and Freedman are best known for promoting, giving for example lots of information about the use of "prose particles" in different short units of the book. This is a real reference work, with nearly complete reference to scholarly debate.

Bruce C. Birch Hosea, Joel, and Amos (Westminster Bible Companion)Westminster John Knox, 1997. pp.280.

Peter C. Craigie, Twelve Prophets: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, and Jonah (The Daily Study Bible Series) Westminster John Knox, 1984. pp.252.

Jan De Waard, William A. Smalley A Handbook on the Book of Amos (UBS Handbook) United Bible Societies, 1979 (Reissued 1994)
Though originally titled "A Translator's Handbook..." this volume is useful for students with no Hebrew, as well as to those who read the original. It provides details discussion of the meaning of each small section of the book, as well as De Waard & Smalley's interesting proposal to see a powerful chiastic structure to the book.

William Rainey Harper, Amos and Hosea (International Critical Commentary) Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1990. pp.608. [Compare CBD's Price]

John H. Hayes, Amos, the Eighth-Century Prophet : His Time and His Preaching Abingdon, 1989
Hayes offers a short but distinctive reading of Amos. Based on this detailed reconstruction of the history of (Northern Kingdom) Israel's last years the book accurately reflects the prophet's preaching at the New Year festival in 750BCE.
The style is straightforward and Hayes provides the reasons behind his conclusions. Though out of print it could well be worth trying to get a copy from Amazon's "Out-of-Print" service.

D.A. Hubbard, Joel and Amos (Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries) Leicester: IVP, 1989. pp.245. [Compare CBD's Price]

Tyndale commentaries aim to provide the best of Evangelical scholarship. Hubbard's on (Joel &) Amos arrives at conservative conclusions, but shares the historical focus of the older style of biblical scholarship.

Jorg Jeremias, The Book of Amos : A Commentary (Old Testament Library) Westminster John Knox, 1998
A hot new commentary from a respected scholar, not the last word, but the latest thing in printed Amos commentaries. "Replaces" Mays' volume, but only as Paul "replaces" Wolff


Philip King, Amos, Hosea, Micah: An Archaeological Commentary Westminster John Knox, 1988. pp.180. [Compare CBD's Price]
Though out of print, this book tries to do what others do partially, discuss Amos from an Archaeological perspective. If you are serious about Amos, or keen on discovering more about Archaeology and the Bible this book is worth ordering.

James Limburg, Hosea-Jonah (Interpretation) John Knox, 1988. pp.201. [Compare CBD's Price]

H. McKeating, Amos, Hosea, Micah (Cambridge Bible Commentary) Cambridge University Press, 1971.

J.L. Mays, Amos (Old Testament Library) Westminster, 1999. pp.176. [Compare CBD's Price]
Slimmer, and easier to read, than most of the other "solid" scholarly commentaries, Mays' Old Testament Library volume discusses questions that many readers either ask, or ought to ask, about Amos.

Alan Motyer, Amos: The Day of the Lion, new edn. (The Bible Speaks Today) Leicester: IVP, 1984. pp.208. [Compare CBD's Price]
This series seeks to focus on the message of the biblical book, rather than on its historical and literary features for their own sake. Could be useful as stimulus to meditation and reflection, perhaps as a complement to all that detailed study the most of the other tomes listed here will provide!

Shalom M. Paul, Amos (Hermeneia) Fortress, 1991. pp.409. [Compare CBD's Price]
The big pages of the Hermenia series contain a wealth of well organised information and ideas. (Paul's "Amos" has 409 pages.) Less strong on scholarly debate, but with an approach which by being more sensitive to the literary feel of the book offers more balanced commentary than Wolff's earlier classic in the same series.


Gary V. Smith, Hosea/Amos/Micah (NIV Application Commentary) Zondervan, 2001. pp.608.

Douglas Stuart, Hosea-Jonah (Word Biblical Commentary 31) Waco, Texas: Word, 1987. [Compare CBD's Price]

Bruce Vawter, Amos, Hosea, Micah, with an Introduction to Classical Prophecy (Old Testament Message) Michael Glazier, 1981. pp.169.

H.W. Wolff, Joel and Amos (Hermeneia) Fortress, 1977. pp.393. [Compare CBD's Price]
Translation of a magisterial German commentary, illustrates the best and worst of biblical studies of that period, solid form-critical questioning arrives at over skeptical conclusions about how the book came to be. The careful and well-documented discussion of every issue is not out-dated. (Though "replaced" by Paul's volume in the series.)




© Tim Bulkeley, 2005


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