THE FAITHFUL SAYINGS IN THE PASTORAL LETTERS, by George W. Knight III; Baker Book House, 1979; 167 pp., $6.95 (paper). (Reviewed by Prof. H. Hanko.)
The clause, “Faithful is the saying . . .”, appears five different times in the pastoral writings of Paul. In three instances there is appended to this clause the added statement, “and worthy of all acceptation.” It is striking that this expression is found only in the pastoral epistles of Paul and not in his other writings. George Knight, professor of New Testament at Covenant Theological Seminary, devotes this book to a study of this phenomenon. After examining a number of reasons for this, he comes to the conclusion that the expression calls attention to a significant point which Paul wishes to make, and that the significant point is cast into the form of a creed used in the liturgy of the apostolic church. In other words, already in the days of the apostles, the Church was engaged in formulating her faith in creedal form for use in the worship services. And these expressions in Paul are the evidences of this.
The book is interesting and well worth reading although, because of its extensive use of Greek, it is readable for those who are aquainted with the Greek language.
COMMENTARY ON GALATIANS, Martin Luther; Kregel Publications, 1979; 388 pages, $l0.95. (Reviewed by Prof. H. Hanko.)
Shortly before Luther died he is quoted as saying that there were only two books which he wrote in his life which were any good. One was “The Bondage of the Will” and the other was his “Commentary on Galatians.” Apart from appearing in the collected works of Luther, this is the first time in a long time that this important work of the Wittenberg reformer has appeared in a separate volume.
I cannot recommend this work strongly enough, and every faithful son of the Reformation ought to be grateful for this effort of Kregels to make this book available. It can be used as any commentary is used in a study of this important book of the Bible and the reader will find depths of riches in Luther’s explanation of it. But there is more than that. Here, in this commentary, you really find what the truth of the Lutheran reformation, the just shall live by faith, is all about. After all, the great theme of this epistle is justification by faith apart from the works of the law. This was also the theological principle of Luther’s reformatory work, and it is no wonder then that this book stands high among Luther’s writings. I would almost say that one cannot understand well the Lutheran Reformation without reading Luther’s Commentary on Galatians. Yet, finally, the commentary makes excellent devotional reading. It is not difficult to sit down with the book and read it for its great insights into the truth of salvation in the cross of Christ alone.
The book is somewhat condensed, but the price of $10.95 is a bargain indeed in these days of expensive books. Get it and add it to your library and, above all, read it.
I have not checked on the accuracy of the translation.