- Verse-by-verse commentary
- In-depth discussion of textual and critical matters
- Introductions to each book’s authorship, date, purpose, structure, and theology
- Detailed bibliography
Providing clear exposition based on solid contemporary scholarship, this commentary by F. Charles Fensham examines the books of Ezra and Nehemiah—two books of Scripture that are especially important for understanding the last century of Old Testament Jewish history and for marking the beginnings of Judaism.
A biblical scholar well known for his expertise in ancient Near Eastern studies, especially Ugaritic, Fensham places Ezra and Nehemiah against the ancient Near Eastern environment. In his introduction Fensham discusses the original unity of the books as well as the problems of authorship. He then treats the historical and religious background of the books, taking special note of the development of a Jewish religious society in postexilic times. Text and language are examined next, followed by a thorough bibliography.
The commentary proper, based on Fensham’s own fresh translation of the biblical texts, is richly documented and displays cautious good judgment, willingness to consider different options, a sensible approach, and keen insight into the religious meaning of these key Hebrew texts.