Recommended Books

Over the years, I’ve used a number of biblical resources in preaching, teaching, research, and personal study. Here is my list of recommended books in specific categories. Unless otherwise noted, I’ve only listed resources that I’ve actually used or read (at least in part). For each of the categories, I’ve listed books in my order of preference. It’s always nice to have multiple viewpoints, however. Feel free to ask any questions about these resources. Enjoy!


Systematic Theology

  1. Systematic Theology, Wayne Grudem – Clear, well-researched, and thorough. Contains references to other systematic theologies.
  2. Christian Theology, Millard Erickson – More prose-like than Grudem, good balance in presentation of views.

New Testament Theology

  1. Theology of the New Testament: A Canonical and Synthetic Approach, Frank Thielman – Very good, book-by-book approach, readable.
  2. New Testament Theology: Magnifying God in Christ, Thomas Schreiner – Narrative/Biblical approach as opposed to book-by-book, also very readable.
  3. A Theology of the New Testament, George Eldon Ladd

Old Testament Theology

  1. An Old Testament Theology: A Canonical and Thematic Approach, Bruce Waltke (not yet read)
  2. Old Testament Theology, 3 vols., John Goldingay (not yet read)

Biblical Theology

  1. Neither Poverty Nor Riches: A Biblical Theology of  Possessions, Craig Blomberg


  1. How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth, Gordon Fee and Douglas Stuart
  2. Introduction to Biblical Interpretation, William Klein, Craig Blomberg, and Robert Hubbard, Jr.
  3. The Hermeneutical Spiral, Grant Osborne (not yet read)



  • BECNT – Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament
  • ICC – International Critical Commentary
  • NAC – New American Commentary
  • NICOT/NICNT – New International Commentary on the Old Testament/New Testament
  • NIGTC – The New International Greek Testament Commentary
  • PNTC – Pillar New Testament Commentary
  • WBC – Word Biblical Commentary
  • ZECNT – Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament


  1. Matthew, Grant Osborne (ZECNT)
  2. The Gospel According to Matthew, Leon Morris (PNTC)
  3. Matthew (vol. 1, vol. 2), Donald Hagner (WBC)
  4. Matthew, Craig Blomberg (NAC)


  1. The Gospel According to John, D. A. Carson (PNTC) – I think this is the most helpful commentary on John out there. Thorough interaction with the text, excellent insights.
  2. John, Andreas Köstenberger (BECNT)  – Also extremely good.
  3. John (vol. 1, vol. 2), Gerald Borchert (NAC)


  1. The Epistle to the Romans, Douglas Moo (NICNT) – Thorough, clear, well researched, tells you all the things big and small you want to know about a passage.
  2. Romans, Thomas Schreiner (BECNT) – Very close second to Moo. I really like this commentary a lot as well, and he explained some things better (for me) than Moo.
  3. The Epistle to the Romans, Leon Morris (PNTC)

First Corinthians

  1. The First Epistle to the Corinthians, Gordon Fee (NICNT)
  2. 1 Corinthians, David Garland (BECNT) – a close second to Fee.
  3. The First Epistle to the Corinthians, Anthony Thiselton (NIGTC)


  1. The Letter to the Ephesians, Peter O’Brien (PNTC) – Deals with touch issues very well, very thorough.
  2. Ephesians, Clinton Arnold (ZECNT) – New, love the format, argues for non-circular reading of the letter.


  1. The Epistle to the Philippians, Peter O’Brien (NIGTC) – Far and away the most helpful for me, extremely detailed, excellent structural and grammatical analysis, worth every penny.
  2. Paul’s Letter to the Philippians, Gordon Fee (NICNT) – detailed, good theological application.
  3. Philippians, Moisés Silva (BECNT)


  1. Colossians and Philemon, Douglas Moo (PNTC)
  2. Colossians, Philemon, Peter O’Brien (WBC)
  3. The Epistles to Colossians and Philemon, James Dunn (NIGTC)

1 Thessalonians

  1. The Letters to the Thessalonians, Gene Green (PNTC) – the clearest, best commentary I’ve used on Thessalonians. Excellent application as well.
  2. The Epistles to the Thessalonians, Charles Wanamaker (NIGTC) – best interaction with the text, very good, helpful insights into grammar and Greek.
  3. 1 & 2 Thessalonians, F. F. Bruce (WBC) – brief, but good nuggets in there.

1 & 2 Timothy

  1. Pastoral Epistles, William Mounce (WBC)- The best. Defends Pauline authorship, great interaction with the text, good application within.
  2. The Letters to Timothy and Titus, Philip Towner (NICNT) – superb detail. Along with Marshall, defends an authorship position called allonymity.
  3. A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Pastoral Epistles, I. Howard Marshall (ICC)


  1. The Book of Revelation, Robert Mounce (NICNT) – historic premill, best mix between scholarship and clarity
  2. The Book of Revelation, G. K. Beale (NIGTC) – amill, way more in here than I can handle, but very thorough
  3. Revelation, Grant Osborne (BECNT) – historic premill, good middle ground between the two.

1 Comment

  1. steve


    I love your list. I have a few questions. In the Ephesians category you put obrien ahead of Arnold. I am trying to choose between the two any more thoughts especially for personal study and sermon prep. Also on Acts have you compared Bock or Peterson which do you prefer here.Also Marks gospel – Edwards or stein.
    In Matthew have you read Knox chamblin commentary, or for 1 corinthaians Rosners commentary. Thanks in advance
    I am updateing some of my older NICNT commentaries.



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