The word on the street was that this commentary by Robert Hubbard in the NIVAC series was one of the best that the series had to offer and with it now in my hands, I can understand why. That is no small accomplishment when you consider that Joshua has never been thought of as the easiest book of the Bible from which to draw present-day application. That’s not to criticize that wonderful book of Scripture, but to admit that there are many issues in it that do not exactly line up with modern sensibilities. This commentary is full of keen observations and thoughtful application. I really can’t agree with all its historical and textual conclusions, but if you will look past those things what is left is of much value.
The introduction, quite frankly, is a little spotty. He is pretty good at explaining the tension between the viewpoints of Joshua’s day and our own. His brief summary of the contents of the book was fair but not deep. His explanation of Joshua himself brought out some fine points. Again, though he was fair to mention that there is an early date viewpoint out there, I don’t personally agree with his dating. If you do, you’ll like the book even more. He can be quite speculative when he talks about the Deuteronomic influence in the book. His thoughts on the theological themes in the book are much better and a chart demonstrating the echoes of Moses’ life in Joshua’s life was outstanding. After a brief outline, he gives a select bibliography that’s quite lengthy for one of these volumes.
It’s in the challenging passages of Joshua where this commentary comes alive. It takes the NIVAC format of original meaning, bridging contexts, and contemporary significance and uses that template to advantage. The depth of description in the original meaning section was impressive throughout. No one can offer applications that will ring true for every reader in every passage, but this one does a fine job for us.
I would check other volumes for historical matters, but this one delivers explanation and application with the best of them. Highly recommended.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.