Deuteronomy, newest Believers Church Bible Commentary, released
A call for faith in God and right living
HARRISONBURG, Va. and KITCHENER, Ontario—How should we walk in God’s way as a faithful people? What tools do the biblical stories of God’s people give us?
Deuteronomy is a book of stories, a book of law, and a look at the core of faith: “Hear O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one,” Deuteronomy 6:4 puts it. Sometimes called the “gospel according to Moses,” Deuteronomy examines divine grace and the practices of justice and right living.
Herald Press has released Deuteronomy, the 29th volume in the Believers Church Bible Commentary series, authored by Gerald E. Gerbrandt of Canadian Mennonite University in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
“Deuteronomy is sometimes perceived as ancient history, but a key word is today,” says Gerbrandt. “There is a power in Deuteronomy to become the word for today in diverse contexts.” He notes the words that call out to present-day believers in Deuteronomy 5:3: “Not [only] with our ancestors did the Lord make this covenant, but with us, who are all of us here alive today.”
The Deuteronomy commentary, like all of the volumes in the Believers Church Bible Commentary series, is designed to provide guidance for a variety of readers. Written for lay readers, pastors, teachers, and Bible study groups, this commentary considers the themes that tie together the Old Testament, New Testament, and life in the modern world.
Using an Anabaptist reading of Scripture, Gerbrandt examines the Shema of Deuteronomy 6—the call to worship one God that Jesus quotes in the Gospels. Gerbrandt looks at how Deuteronomy promotes healthy community relationships. “This is not only intellectual assent or for Sunday morning worship only,” he writes. “It requires that justice become the center of how we treat each other,” including the resident “aliens and strangers” among us. Gerbrandt thereby connects Deuteronomy to Jesus’ teachings on loving our neighbor as we love ourselves.
Gerbrandt invites readers to engage difficult passages of Deuteronomy that have been used to justify violence and dispossession. He looks at how hopeful themes of covenant, land, and leadership express the heart of Israel’s faith.
Like all volumes in the Believers Church Bible Commentary series, Deuteronomy includes useful tools like “The Text in the Biblical Context” and “The Text in the Life of the Church.” These tools encourage readers to understand the book in its original setting, and to find the ways this fifth book of Moses continues to speak to the church.
The Believers Church Bible Commentary is a cooperative project of the Brethren in Christ Church, Brethren Church, Church of the Brethren, Mennonite Church Canada, and Mennonite Church USA.
Gerald E. Gerbrandt is president emeritus and professor emeritus of Bible at Canadian Mennonite University. He served as CMU president from 2003 to 2012 and as president of Canadian Mennonite Bible College from 1997 to 2003.
Deuteronomy is available in paperback for $34.99 USD from MennoMedia at 800-245-7894 or www.MennoMedia.org, as well as at bookstores.
High resolution photo available.
For more information on this press release: