[K:JNWTS 28/2 (September 2013): 50]

Book Review

Raymond F. Collins, Second Corinthians. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2013. 320 pages. Paper. ISBN: 978-0-8010-3186-1. $27.99.

This is a pedestrian commentary on Paul’s epistle and stands in rather stark contrast to the stimulating work Collins has done on the Thessalonian correspondence (The Birth of the New Testament). While the introductory and historical background matter here is adequate, it is dull and plodding. The narrative of Paul’s life in the Corinthian drama is not penetrated, especially as that life mirror’s the life of the crucified and risen Son of God (to whom Paul is intimately united by grace alone through faith alone such that the apostle finds himself eschatologically identified with the “Lord [who] is the Spirit”—2 Cor. 3:17). Such remarkable pneumatology should at least cause our commentator to grapple with the profundity involved, as Neil Hamilton (The Holy Spirit and Eschatology in Paul) and Geerhardus Vos (“The Eschatological Aspect of the Pauline Conception of the Spirit,” in R. B. Gaffin, ed., Redemptive History and Biblical Interpretation, 91-125) have done. But no, Collins gives us a mere nine-line paragraph (pp. 88-89) with no plumbing of the depths of the matter. This alone should alert us to “nothing new here”. In fact, nothing not already available in more hefty commentaries. Save your money for Furnish in the Anchor Bible set.

— James T. Dennison, Jr.