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Joel, Obadiah, Malachi (NIV Application Commentary) Hardcover – 7 Apr 2006

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These three short prophetic books of the Old Testament each contain a dual message. On one hand are messages of impending judgment--for all peoples on the Day of the Lord, for an enemy of Israel, and for Israel herself. On the other hand are messages of great hope-of the pouring out of God's Spirit, of restoration and renewal, and of a coming Messiah. Placing judgment and hope together in such a manner may seem paradoxical to a contemporary mindset. But the complete message of these prophets gives a fuller picture of God-who despises and rightly judges sin and rebellion, but who also lovingly invites people to return to him so that he might bestow his wonderful grace and blessings. It is a message no less timely today than when these books were first written, and David W. Baker skillfully bridges the centuries in helping believers today understand and apply it. Most Bible commentaries take us on a one-way trip from our world to the world of the Bible. But they leave us there, assuming that we can somehow make the return journey on our own. They focus on the original meaning of the passage but don't discuss its contemporary application.

The information they offer is valuable-but the job is only half done! "The NIV Application Commentary Series" helps bring both halves of the interpretive task together. This unique, award-winning series shows readers how to bring an ancient message into our postmodern context. It explains not only what the Bible meant but also how it speaks powerfully today.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 10 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Useful Without Being Overly Technical 1 July 2009
By Phillip H. Steiger - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are familiar with this series, you will know the commentaries make an attempt at not only dealing with the original meaning of the texts, but they attempt to make contemporary application of them as well. That can have its benefits and its drawbacks. The drawbacks that this commentary has were the lack of breadth of application. I know no commentary or book will be able to hit on everything within a text, and while this one does a good job most of the time, the application sections did not always deal with what seemed to be the core issues of some passages.

I found the "Original Meaning" sections to be very helpful, and well in line with the other evangelical commentaries I used for my sermon series on Malachi. Overall, this commentary was useful, but I believe the NICOT on Haggai and Malachi would be a better first bet.
Helpful Commentary 21 Oct. 2014
By parkerj - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
The NIV Application Commentary (NIVAC) is a unique commentary that seeks to give the reader both the meaning of a passage of Scripture in its original context and a practical application for today’s life. The NIVAC commentary series proves itself to be highly valuable to better understand the text of Scripture and to make solid applications out of it. The NIVAC on Joel, Obadiah, and Malachi begins with an introduction chapter that discusses different areas of the book. I find that the introduction section in commentaries on the Old Testament to be highly valuable. It is here that the reader will gain a better understanding of the arrangement of the books, what influenced the author, and the historical context Understanding the time frame and historical events proves to be invaluable information when reading through the Bible, especially the Old Testament. It is helpful to have an understanding of the surrounding political and religious climate at the time these prophets spoke and a commentary will help with that information. This is not the only focus of this commentary, as it seeks to draw practical truths out for the reader. So while this commentary does focus on certain historical features, its main goal is to bring the reader into God's big picture and draw out practical applications from the text.

The Text and Commentary section of this book will divide each passage of Scripture into three sections:
Original Meaning – This is the section where the author will explain the meaning of the text in its original context. This section is fairly easy to read and is excellent for both Pastors and Laymen.
Bridging Context – In this section the author gets us from the original context to the contemporary context by a “bridge”. This is usually the shorter section, as its intent is a very simple one: bring the reader from first century times to 21st century times. The comments in this section are very helpful and this is usually is where the author discusses the main points of the chapter as a whole, and how the original context may be “fleshed out” over different time periods.
Contemporary Significance - This is the section that sets this commentary apart from many others, in my opinion. It answers the question that every reader of the Bible asks: “How does this apply to my life?” This section is such a treat for the reader and often times in other volumes of this series I find myself checking to see what is said in this section, even in clear passages that I may not be studying with a need for a commentary. This section is outstanding. As with any commentary that gives a practical application, the reader may not agree with everything that the author puts forth, but there is a lot of quality application for everyone. This section is especially helpful in Old Testament books that sometimes make practical application difficult. I have found that this is the section that I read the most in every NIVAC commentary on the Old Testament that I own.
David W. Baker, professor of Old Testament and Semitic Languages at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ohio is extremely helpful in taking the reader from Old Testament Israel to present times. One doesn't have to agree with all of his conclusions regarding the contemporary significance to be helped greatly by his work. This commentary is helpful in bridging the context and providing the reader with a better understanding of the text.

I was blessed by reading this commentary, especially the contemporary significance section.
I would recommend this commentary to anyone looking for a helpful intermediate commentary. A more technical commentary would be helpful to dig into the text more, but this makes a great companion.

I received a free copy of this book from Zondervan Academic in exchange for an honest review.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
GREAT 7 Feb. 2013
By jo - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This commentary is a must have for anyone who seriously wants to apply the Word of God to Modern application. Truly the title speaks for itself.
Can't miss with the NIV Application Commentaries 30 Oct. 2014
By L. Osborne - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The NIV series of commentaries are all excellent. It contains the depth for Bible scholars while maintaining easy readability for those who are curious.
Five Stars 28 Dec. 2014
By Judith - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
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