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The letters to the Colossians and Philemon come with unique historical and textual challenges. Of particular concern is the issue of authorship: did Paul really write these letters? If he didn’t write them, should they be included in Biblical cannon? Where do we draw the line for cultural admonishments vs. universal commands—especially concerning the role of women in marriage? And why isn’t Paul more staunchly against slavery?
In this part of the NIV Application Commentary series, acclaimed author David E. Garland shows that how we answer these questions has vast implications for how we answer other questions of theology, history, and culture—without forgetting to discuss how we can apply these letters in our own time.
Many Bible commentaries offer us an exciting tour through the ancient world of Biblical times. They give us cultural backdrop and add new, wonderful layers of meaning to familiar stories and passages. But when the time comes to return to normal, everyday life, we are left disconnected from the memories of our trip—without the knowledge of practical, real-life application. This is where the NIV Application Commentary series picks up the task. It merges the original, ancient context with right now, showing us both how ancient readers would have read the Bible and how we can connect to this living word of God from a modern context. Most importantly, however, it helps us begin the life-changing process of true application, showing how God’s word can continue to have a powerful voice in our lives today.
The NIV Application Commentary uses a highly accessible, three-tiered method of bringing readers to a fuller understanding of each Biblical book. Original Meaning will explore a book’s meaning in light of its historical and cultural context. Bridging Contexts, as its name implies, will help the reader link the text’s original meaning to its Contemporary Significance—the final tier that helps you apply the Bible to everyday life.
“This series promises to become an indispensable tool for every pastor and teacher who seeks to make the Bible's timeless message speak to this generation.”
“It takes more than interpretation of God's Word to change lives, it takes application.
Application is the bottom line in preaching and teaching. Without it, we've missed the point of the Bible. The NIV Application Commentary is an outstanding resource for pastors and anyone else who is serious about developing ‘doers of the Word.’”
-Rick Warren, Pastor of Saddleback Valley Community Church