A faithful expositor of God’s Word should always seek to exalt Christ in the preaching event. Preaching is, in some regard, an act of worship. It is the explanation of preparation and hours spent with God and God’s truth for the congregation’s edification. To do so, one must use exegete the text well. Secondly, it is necessary to spend time with other scholars who have taken the time to communicate God’s truth.
One aside: there are commentaries written for and toward a more scholarly approach to the text (e.g., working with the original languages of the Bible), and then there are those written in a more pastoral nature (e.g., for application in the preaching event). I appreciate both kinds of commentaries.
Tony Merida’s commentary Exalting Jesus in Acts is a commentary that features the best aspects of scholarly and pastoral commentaries. Dr. Merida displays robust research in his works cited which in turn is shown in the commentary on any portion of text. This is a commentary for pastors who desire faithful exposition from a seasoned pastor (and professor of teaching preaching!). Furthermore, I also appreciate that this commentary is written by an experienced professor of preaching and pastor but not solely for pastors. It is also written for small group study (see my final point).
I also appreciate Merida’s commentary because it features the new Christian Standard Bible (CSB). Literal and readable, the CSB is a new translation into the Evangelical world that should be used by pastors, scholars, and students. I equate the CSB’s readability and reliability with the likes of the English Standard Version and the New American Standard Bible. I think it is a reliable combination between these two translations of Scripture.
Finally, I also am appreciative of the reflection questions at the end of each commentary section. The layout of each chapter provides the main-idea of the text, outline of this particular portion of the text, and exposition. The questions provide ample discussion from the commentary in conjunction with Scripture being the centerpiece of all that is said.
Certainly, the Christ-Centered commentary series is not the Word Biblical or Baker Exegetical series, but this commentary is devoted to the text of Scripture. It is not technical in its dealings with the original languages though I have no problem with that. Exalting Jesus in Acts, as with the commentaries in this series, is for the pastor seeking to be a faithful expositor of the truths found in God’s Word.
Disclosure: I received this book free from B&H Publishers through the B&H Blogger Review Program. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255