A few weeks ago a blog tour of Matt Woodley’s commentary on Matthew started. Each day a few bloggers post a thought or review of a section of the commentary. I read the section from Matthew 13. A few thoughts…
The commentary is part of IVP’s Resonate series, which seeks to combine the “the biblical sense” of the text with its “cultural significance.” The series seems aimed primarily at practitioners, not scholars or academics. It would be a great resource for those who lead Missional Communities, Bible studies, or small groups. Woodley writes with an pastoral, conversational tone that’s easy to read.
In some ways I felt like I was listening to a sermon while I read the book. It doesn’t surprise me that Woodley was a pastor for many years. His sensitivity to the original context combined with his ability to help contemporary audiences understand the meaning and significance of the parables of Matthew 13 was refreshing.
Some might feel this book is to “surface-level” to really be called a commentary, but it is apparent that Woodley has done his homework, and I think resources like this are going to be increasingly important in the years to come. We need more tools like this that can adequately equip “lay-people” (for lack of a better term) to lead their small groups and Missional Communities into a fuller understanding of and obedience to the Word of God.
If you’re leading a small group or Missional Community, or if you’d just like to get a better grasp on the Gospel of Matthew, I’d recommend checking out this commentary.
Kudos to IVP for launching the series! This seems like a great start.
Good review Ben, indeed Matt's pastoral heart comes through.