Commentaries on Genesis

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Bible Commentaries

  Exodus

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For more great commentaries on Genesis, be sure to check:
Commentaries on the Pentateuch
Commentaries on the Whole Old Testament
& Whole Bible Commentaries

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Order of Contents  80+ total

The Best Commentaries  12
More Commentaries  16+
On the Hebrew  3
Jewish Commentaries  1
The Early Church  10
Sections Throughout Genesis  4
Types in Genesis  1
Chapters in Genesis  24
Archaeology in Genesis  1
Authenticity of Genesis  3
Special Topics:

Bible Characters in Gen. 1-12
The Patriarchs  3
.       Abraham  5
.              Sarah  1
.              Lot  1
.       Isaac  4
.              Rebekah  1
.       Jacob  4
.               Esau  1
.       Joseph  10+

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The Best Commentaries on Genesis

For a brief, Scriptural defense that Gen. 1 means exactly what it says, see Kenneth Gentry’s In the Space of Six Days and the further resources on our page: Creation.

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Simple, Practical, Devotional

De Graaf, S.G. – ‘On Genesis’  1977  225 pp. in Promise and Deliverance, vol. 1: From Creation to the Conquest of Canaan, pp. 29-254

De Graff is a Dutch Reformed author who focuses on the unfolding of the Covenant through history.  He writes in an easy to read, but helpful and insightful style.

Thomas, William Henry Griffith – Genesis, a Devotional Commentary  Buy  1946

‘Possibly the most helpful devotional exposition of Genesis available.  Pastors will find the material on Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph (chaps. 12-50) to be unsurpassed!’ – Cyril J. Barber

Vos, Johannes – Genesis  Buy  1954-57  544 pp.

Vos was the son of Geerhardus Vos and an RPCNA pastor in the Midwest.  The chapters in this work were originally a series of popular articles in the Blue Banner Faith and Life magazine.

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Medium Level

Alford, Henry – The Book of Genesis and part of the Book of Exodus [chs. 1-25]: a revised version with Commentary  1872

Alford (1810-1871) was of the Church of England and the Dean of Canterbury.

*** – ‘The works of this eminent scholar are too well known and appreciated to need even a word from us.’ – Spurgeon

Candlish, Robert – The Book of Genesis Expounded in a Series of Discourses, vols. 1 (1-37), 2 (38-50)  1868

Candlish was an influential minister and professor in the Free Church of Scotland.

*** – ‘We venture to characterize this as THE work upon Genesis, so far as lectures can make up an exposition; we have greatly profited by its perusal.  It should be in every Biblical library.’ – Surgeon

‘Expository messages rich in their devotional emphasis, containing helpful theological discussions, thoroughly conservative, and of special value to the pastor.’ – Cyril J. Barber

Calvin, John – Commentary on Genesis

*** Participates in the general excellencies of Calvin’s works.’ – Spurgeon

Edersheim, Alfred – World before the Flood, and History of the Patriarchs  from his larger Bible History, 7 vols.

** ‘The author has mainly aimed at giving instruction to the Sunday School teacher, and the Bible Class student.  He may be read with profit by students of a higher grade.  The work is not a commentary, but is full of instruction.’ – Spurgeon

Fuller, Andrew – Expository Discourses on Genesis  1st ed. 1806  420 pp.

Fuller (1754-1815) was a reformed baptist.

*** ‘Weighty, judicious, and full of Gospel truth.  One of the very best series of discourses extant upon Genesis, as [George] Bush also thought [who plagiarized therefrom].’ – Surgeon

Jacobus, Melancthon – Notes Critical and Explanatory on the Book of Genesis  1866

Jacobus was a graduate of Princeton seminary, a presbyterian minister and a professor of Biblical literature at Western Theological Seminary in Alleghany, NY.

*** – ‘A very valuable work, in which [Bishop John] Colenso is boldly met and answered [regarding his views on the fallibility of the Pentateuch].  It contains much Gospel teaching, and aids the preacher greatly.  Not easily to be obtained.  It ought to be reprinted.’ – Spurgeon

‘The excellent Commentaries of Dr. Melancthon Jacobus have deservedly attained a high reputation, and their wide circulation proves how well they are adapted to the wants of both ministers and laymen. They present, in a brief compass, the results of extensive erudition, abound in judicious exposition and pertinent illustration, and are, moreover, distinguished by doctrinal soundness, evangelical character, and an eminently devout spirit.’ – Charles Hodge, William H. Green, J.W. Alexander and others from Princeton Seminary

‘…characterized by solid learning, sound doctrine, and lucid statements, a pleasant style, and the most serious spirit of piety.’ – William S. Plumer

ed. Lange, John P. – Commentary on the Genesis  HTML  1866

***‘The best of the series, and in all respects beyond price.’ – Spurgeon

Leupold, H.C. – Exposition of Genesis

Leupold (b. 1891) was an orthodox Lutheran and a professor of the Old Testament.

‘A most thorough, helpful exposition from the conservative standpoint.  Defends the Mosaic authorship, refutes the documentary hypothesis, holds to six literal days for creation, believes that the ‘sons of God’ were Sethites, and argues for [a] universal flood.  Lutheran.  Amillennial.’ – Cyril J. Barber

Murphy, James – A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on Genesis, with a New Translation  1863

Murphy was a professor of Hebrew in Belfast, Ireland.

*** ‘A work of massive scholarship, abounding in rich and noble thought, and remarkably fresh and suggestive.’ – Evangelical Magazine, quoted by Spurgeon

‘Contains reverent scholarship based upon sound exegesis, but has not been superseded by more recent treatments.’ – Cyril J. Barber

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Advanced

Poole, Matthew – Critical Synopsis of the Bible: Genesis, 3 vols.  Buy

This is different and much larger than Poole’s Annotations on Scripture.  Here Poole gives something of a history of interpretation (from Jewish writers until Christian interpreters of Poole’s own day) on every verse of the Bible.

‘…you will find in Poole’s Synopsis a marvelous collection of all the wisdom and folly of the critics.  It is a large cyclopedia worthy of the days when theologians could be cyclopean, and had not shrunk from folios to octavos.  Query—a query for which I will not demand an answer—has one of you beaten the dust from the venerable copy of Poole which loads our library shelves?  Yet as Poole spent no less than ten years in compiling it, it should be worthy of your frequent notice—ten years, let me add, spent in Amsterdam in exile for the truth’s sake from his native land.  His work is based on an earlier compilation entitled Critic Sacri, containing the concentrated light of a constellation of learned men who have never been excelled in any age or country.’ – Spurgeon

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More Commentaries on Genesis

For a brief, Scriptural defense that Gen. 1 means exactly what it says, see Kenneth Gentry’s In the Space of Six Days and the further resources on our page: Creation.

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Devotional and Practical

Blunt, Henry – Family Exposition of the Pentateuch, vol. 1 (Gen)  1844

**  “Simple Expositions for family reading.  Good, but not brilliant.” – Spurgeon

Cumming, John – Sabbath Morning Readings on the Old Testament: Book of Genesis  1854  390 pp.

**  ‘Dr. Cumming’s works are not very original, but his style is flowing, his teachings are always evangelical, and he puts other men’s thoughts into pleasing language.’ – Spurgeon

Hawker, John – Bible Thoughts in Quiet Hours: Genesis  1873

** ‘Deeply spiritual reflections, not without learning and critical power.  The preacher will find here many hints for sermons.’

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Medium Level

Puritans

Babington, Gervase – Certain Plain, Brief and Comfortable Notes upon Genesis also in Works, d. 1610

Gibbens, Nicholas – Questions and Disputations concerning the Holy Scripture wherein are contained, brief, faithful and sound expositions of the most difficult and hardest places…  ToC  1602

* ‘In his own fashion this antique writer tries to answer curious questions which are suggested by Genesis.  His day is over.’

Hughes, George – An Analytical Exposition of the Whole First Book of Moses, called Genesis, and of 23 chapters of his second book, called Exodus  ToC  1672

Hughes (1603-1667) was a puritan.

*** – ‘The deductions which Hughes draws from the text are of the nature of homiletical hints, and for this reason he will be a treasure to the minister.  He belongs to the noble army of Puritans.’ – Spurgeon

Richardson, John – Annotations on Genesis  d. 1654  67 pp.

Richardson was reformed and printed this only a few years after the second edition of the English Annotations (which were nicknamed the Westminster Annotations as 6 of the 11 commentators were Westminster divines), to which it was designed as a supplement.

On Richardson’s brief commentary on the O.T.:  **  ‘Of secondary importance, and very short; yet good.  Frequently bound up with Leigh [as Edward Leigh wrote a commentary on the whole N.T.].’ – Spurgeon

Whatley, William – Prototypes, or, The Primary Precedent Presidents out of the book of Genesis showing, the good and bad things they did and had practically applied to our Information and Reformation  1640

** ‘A queer old book.  The oddity of the title is born out by the singularity of the matter.  It does not expound each verse; but certain incidents are dwelt upon.’

Willet, Andrew – A Sixfold Commentary upon the Two first Books of Moses, being Genesis and Exodus  d. 1621

Willet (1562–1621)

** ‘This work is called by its author [1562-1621] a Hexapla, because he treats his subject under six heads, giving ‘a sixfold use of every chapter, showing:

1. The method of argument;
2. The diverse readings;
3. The explanation of difficult questions and doubtful places;  
4. The places of doctrine;  
5. Places of confutation;  
6. Moral observations.’

Willet is tedious reading; his method hampers him.  In all his Commentaries he lumbers along in his six-wheeled wagon.’ – Spurgeon

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More

Bush, George 

Notes, Critical and Practical on: Genesis, vol.1 (1-21), 2 (22-50)

Bush was a Biblical scholar, a professor of oriental literature in New York City University, and initially a presbyterian minister.

** – ‘Bush has in the most barefaced manner taken copious verbatim extracts from Andrew Fuller, without acknowledgement, and he has also plagiarized Lawson on Joseph by wholesale, without even mentioning his name.  For such a scholar to be guilty of wholesale plunder is inexcusable.  It is one of the worst cases of robbery we have ever met with, and deserves a far stronger denunciation than our gentle pen and slender space will permit.’ – Spurgeon

Questions and Notes, Critical and Practical upon: Genesis

Franks, James – Sacred Literature; or Remarks upon the book of Genesis  1802

*  “This writer collected notes from various authors.  As the sources from which he drew his extracts are within reach, we can select for ourselves.” – Spurgeon

Groves, Henry – Commentary on the book of Genesis, for the use of Readers of the English Version of the Bible  1861

**  “Physical science, the discoveries of travelers, and the results of criticism, so far as they bear upon Genesis, are here brought within the reach of the general reader.” – Spurgeon

Jervis, John – Genesis Elucidated: a New Translation collated with the Samaritan, Septuagint and Syriac, with Notes  1852

**  “Brings out very vividly the oriental character of Genesis, and although we cannot reconcile ourselves to Abh-rauhaum, Is’hauk, and Y’aakobh, and find it hard to believe in Saurauh and Haughaur, we have been glad of the light which the East and its languages have here afforded.” – Spurgeon

Mackintosh, Charles H. – Notes on Genesis  1863

Mackintosh was a Plymouth Brethren writer and proto-Dispensationalist.

*** ‘Precious and edifying reflections marred by peculiarities.’ – Spurgeon

Pink, A.W. – Gleanings in Genesis  Buy  1922  408 pp.

‘Heavily typological, but contains helpful and practical observations on the text.’ – Cyril J. Barber

Robertson, F.W. – Notes on Genesis  1877

Robertson of Brighton (1816–1853) was an English divine, who was ‘a moderate Calvinist in doctrine, and enthusiastically evangelical’ and had a progressive mental condition.  John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan of the Free Church of Scotland said of him:

‘Robertson believed that Christ did something or other, which, somehow or other, had some connection or other with salvation.

‘Spurious spirituality is very dangerous.’

Cyril J. Barber:  ‘Eloquent sermons by a conservative British Anglican minister.  Contains excellent expository values.’

Strahan, James – Hebrew Ideals: A Study of Genesis from Chapters 11-50  1915

‘A rich and rewarding study.’ – Cyril J. Barber

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Advanced

Delitzsch, Franz – New Commentary on Genesis, vol. 1 (chs. 1-14), 2 (15-50)   1889

‘A critical commentary on the Hebrew text which holds to the Mosaic authorship of Genesis, but leaves room for final redaction in the post-exilic period.  Advocates an early form of the documentary hypothesis, and holds to the ‘long day’ theory of creation.  The treatment of chapters 12-50 [is] greatly superior to the material in volume one.’ – Cyril J. Barber

‘I have the highest opinion of Delitzsch as a commentator.  He is the finest Jewish Belles-Lettrist existing.’ – John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan

Turner, Samuel – A Companion to the Book of Genesis  1851

**  “In Horne’s Introduction we read: ‘Though not designed to be a Commentary, this valuable work furnishes the Biblical student with abundant aid for the exact and literal interpretation of the Book of Genesis.” – Spurgeon

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On the Hebrew of Genesis

Greenfield, William – Genesis in English and Hebrew, with an Interlinear Translation, Notes and Grammatical Introduction  1862

**  “This work will not only enable the Student to get at the literal meaning of the text, but may be used as an introduction to the Hebrew language.  The plan is most admirable and we earnestly commend it to the attention of those uninstructed in the sacred tongue.” – Spurgeon

Preston, Theodore – Phraseological Notes on the Hebrew Text of the Book of Genesis  1853

*  “Intended to explain and illustrate the most remarkable peculiarities and anomalies, style, and phrase in the Book of Genesis.  It may interest Hebraists, but can little aid the preacher.” – Spurgeon

Spurrell, George – Notes on the Hebrew Text of the Book of Genesis  1896  495 pp.

‘A critical work of help to students studying the grammar of Genesis.’ – Cyril J. Barber

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A Jewish Commentary on Genesis

Hershon, Paul Issac – The Pentateuch According to the Talmud: Genesis with a Talmudical Commentary  1883  with an Introductory Essay by Donald Spence

Spence, the one who wrote the introductory essay, is the same Spence as co-edited The Pulpit Commentary.

See also Jewish Commentaries on the Pentateuch

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The Early Church on Genesis

Compilations

Louth, Andrew – Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture: Genesis, vols, 1 (1-11), 2 (12-50)  Buy

Sheridan, Mark – Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture: Genesis 12-50  Buy

Individual Fathers

Augustine

Confessions, Books 11-13  on Creation, in Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, vol. 1, pp. 163-208

On Genesis: Two Books on Genesis Against the Manichees; and On the Literal Interpretation of Genesis, an Unfinished Book  Buy

Basil – The Hexaemeron  57 pp.  being 9 Homilies on Gen. 1, in Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, vol. 8, pp. 51-108

Victorinus – On the Creation of the World  3 pp. in Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol. 7, pp. 341-343

Severian of Gabala – Commentaries on Genesis 1-3  Buy

Origen – Homilies on Genesis and Exodus  Buy

Chrysostom – Homilies on Genesis, 3 vols.: 1-17, 18-45, 46-67  Buy

Didymus the Blind – Commentary on Genesis  Buy

Ambrose

Hexameron, Paradise, Cain and Abel  Buy

‘Isaac, or the Soul’, ‘Jacob and the Happy Life’, ‘Joseph’ & ‘The Patriarchs’ in Seven Exegetical Works  Buy

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Sections Throughout Genesis

Close, Francis – The Book of Genesis considered and Illustrated in a Series of Historical Discourses  1828

*  “A course of smoothly-flowing, respectable, quiet, evangelical sermons.  Nobody could be so wicked as to call them sensational.” – Spurgeon

Le Clerk, Jean – 12 Dissertations out of Monsieur Le Clerk’s Genesis  1696  360 pp.

The dissertations are: (1) Hebrew tongue, (2) Manner of interpreting the Bible, (3) Author of the Penteteuch, (4) Temptation of Eve by the Serpent, (5) Flood, (6) Confusion of languages, (7) Original of Circumcision, (8) Divine appearances in the O.T., (9) Subversion of Sodom, (10) Pillar of Salt, (11) Coming of Shiloh, (12) Several obscure texts explained.

Lightfoot, John – A Few and New Observations upon the Book of Genesis  8 pp. in two volume works, vol. 1, p. 691 ff.

Morrison, George – The Glasgow Pulpit Series: Morrison on Genesis  Buy n.d. 92 pp.  Morrison treats of: the Creation, the Fall, Cain & Abel, the Flood, Noah’s Covenant, Lot’s Choice, Abram’s Vision, Abraham & Sodom, Hagar & Ishmael, the Offering of Isaac, Rebekah & Isaac, Jacob & Esau, Bethel & Peniel

Morrison (1866-1928) was a minister in the United Free Church of Scotland and served as an assistant to Alexander Whyte.

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The Types in Genesis

Jukes, Andrew – The Types of Genesis briefly considered, revealing the Development of Human Nature  8th ed. 1898  460 pp.  Jukes expounds on: the Creation, Adam, Cain & Abel, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob & Joseph

Jukes (1815–1901)

**  “In many places far too forced, and therefore to be read with caution; but in its own spiritualizing way very masterly.  Jukes dives deep.” – Spurgeon


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Genesis 1-3

For a brief, Scriptural defense that Gen. 1 means exactly what it says, see Kenneth Gentry’s In the Space of Six Days and the further resources on our page: Creation.

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Reformer

Oecolampadius, Johannes – An Exposition of Genesis  Buy  These are his lectures on Gen. 1-3

Oecolampadius (1482–1531) was a German/Swiss reformer, a co-worker with Erasmus and Zwingli, and as was influential upon Bullinger, Calvin and others.

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Puritan

White, John – A Commentary upon the Three First Chapters of the First Book of Moses called Genesis  ToC  1656  †1648

White (1575–1648) was a Westminster divine and was influential for the  Massachusetts Bay Company settling in America, though he never made the trip across to the New World.

** “A puritan divine, called ‘The Patriarch of Dorchester'”  “A folio upon three chapters!  There were giants in those days.  Manton says, ‘To speak of the worth of the author is needless, his praise being already in all of the churches,’ and he adds that he had been greatly refreshed by the perusal of this book.” – Spurgeon

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Early Westminster

Young, Edward J.

In the Beginning: Gen. chs. 1-3 and the Authority of Scripture  Buy  1976  117

Genesis 3: a Devotional and Expository Study  Buy  1966  165 pp.

Young was one of the great, early, Westminster Seminary scholars.

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More

MacDonald, Donald – Creation and the Fall: a Defence and Exposition of the First Three Chapters of Genesis  1856

**  “We do not hesitate to designate this volume as the most complete examination of the literature and the exegesis of the Creation and the Fall which has appeared in England.” – Journal of Sacred Literature, as quoted by Spurgeon

Bonhoeffer, Dietrich – Creation and Fall: a Theological Interpretation of Genesis 1-3  Buy  1959

Bonhoeffer, a resistance worker against the Nazis, and a martyr in their concentration camps, was neo-orthodox (following Karl Barth), which is highly not recommended.  Nonetheless his life and thought is fascinating, if a bit off.  These lectures were some of his most popular as a theologian.  In explaining the origin of evil, he posits an autonomous vacuum (so to speak) from within creation from whence it came, everything reformed theology has argued against.  

‘A philosophical interpretation of Genesis 1-3 which manifests some unusual views.’ – Cyril J. Barber

Bonnet, L. – The Exile from Eden: Meditations on the Third Chapter of Genesis, with Exegetical Developments  1839

**  “After the French manner.  In nine meditations the salient points in the all-important story of the Fall are touched upon.  One of the best separate treatises upon the subject.” – Spurgeon

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Genesis 1-6

Puritan

Needler, Benjamin – Expository Notes, with Practical Observations, towards the opening of the Five First Chapters of the First Book of Moses  1655

* ‘Needler was one of the eminent divines who took part in the famous [puritan] Morning Exercises [at Cripplegate].  The little work is a curiosity, but nothing more.’ – Spurgeon

Williams, Isaac – The Beginning of the Book of Genesis [chs. 1-4], with Notes and Reflections  1861  455 pp.

Williams (†1865) was a prominent member of the Oxford Movement, or Tractarians (which was High-Church and sacramentalist).

***‘A very remarkable work by a high churchman, opening up in a masterly manner the mystical teachings of the early chapters of Genesis.  To be read cum grano salis [with a grain of salt].’ – Spurgeon

Bonar, Horatius – Earth’s Morning, or Thoughts on Genesis [chs. 1-6]  1875  385 pp.

Bonar was a minister in the Free Church of Scotland.

***“An exposition of the first six chapters only.  The author endeavors ‘to investigate the meaning of each verse and word; that, having done so, the exact revelation of God in these may be brought out, and the spiritual truth evolved.’  He has in a great measure attained his object.  What more could be said in his praise?’ – Spurgeon

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Genesis 1-11

The Reformers

Thompson, John – Reformation Commentary on Scripture: Genesis 1-11  Buy

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Puritan

Bunyan, John – An Exposition of the First Ten Chapters of Genesis  in Works, vol. 2

*  “Allegorical and spiritual.  Bunyan’s characteristics are very prominently manifest.” – Spurgeon

Henry, Philip – An Exposition, with Practical Observations, upon the First Eleven Chapters of the Book of Genesis  d. 1696

**‘Interesting as the exposition of Matthew Henry’s father, taken down from his lips at family prayer by Matthew his son.  This probably suggested the famous Commentary [of Matthew Henry].’ – Spurgeon

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Old Princeton

Davis, John – Genesis and Semitic Tradition  1894  150 pp.  Davis treats of the major subjects in Gen. 1-11

Davis (1854-1926) was one of the great, conservative Princeton scholars.  His specialty was in archaeology and Assyriology.

‘A comparison of the Genesis account of creation and the deluge with Babylonian, Assyrian and Egyptian traditions.’ – Cyril J. Barber

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More

MacGregor, C. Bart. – Notes on Genesis, designed principally for the use of Students in Divinity, part 1  (chs. 1-11)  1853

**  “Contains a great deal of learning, of small use to the preacher.  Many curious and knotty points which arise in the first eleven chapters of Genesis are discussed with considerable ability.” – Spurgeon

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Genesis 1-14

Reformer

Luther, Martin – Lectures on Genesis, vols. 1 (ch. 1-5), 2 (6-14), 3 (15-20), 4 (21-25), 5 (26-30), 6 (31-37), 7 (38-44), 8 (45-50)  Buy  ed. Henry Cole

** ‘Cole made a choice selection.  Luther left four volumes upon Genesis in Latin.  How these Reformers worked!’ – Surgeon

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Puritans

Clapham, Henoch – Commentary on the First Fourteen Chapters of Genesis  †1614 

Clapham (fl.1585-1614) was a puritan.

* “Clapham was a voluminous author of very remarkable attainments.  He wrote also on the first fourteen chapters of Genesis.  This work [on the Song of Solomon] is rare as angel’s visits.” – Spurgeon

Ross, Alexander – An Exposition on the Fourteen First Chapters of Genesis, by way of question and answer, Collected out of ancient and recent writers: both briefly and subtilly propounded and expounded  1626

* – “A very scarce catechism by that Scotch divine who is mentioned in Hudibras [p. 56] in the lines:

‘There was an ancient sound philosopher
That had read Alexander Ross over.'”

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Genesis 1-22

Reformer

Calvin, John – Sermons on Genesis, chs. 1-11, 12-22  Buy

These sermons are different from his commentary on Genesis.

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1900’s, Devotional

Barnhouse, Donald – Genesis, a Devotional Commentary  Buy  1970

Barnhouse

‘A verse-by-verse treatment containing pithy gems of devotional thought, but covering only chapters 1-22.’ – Cyril J. Barber

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Genesis 14

Reformer

Calvin, John – Sermons on Melchizedek and Abraham  Buy

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Genesis 16

Shute, Josias – Sarah and Hagar, or Genesis the 16th chapter opened in Twenty Sermons  1649  248 pp.

Shute was a reformed Anglican.

** – ‘Above three and thirty years rector of St. Mary, Woolnoth.’  ‘In shape, the editor tells us, ‘this book is somewhat slender, like the encouragements of learning.’  He informs us that the author was ‘one of the five famous brother-preachers, somewhat like the five fingers on the right hand of fellowship;’ and that Chrysostom did so much lie in his bosom that he became like him in his flowing style and golden eloquence.  He writes like a learned man, and treats the Scriptures as if ‘each book were a course, each chapter a Benjamin’s mess, and every verse a morsel of the food of angels.”

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Genesis 22

Reformation

Beza, Theodore – A Tragedy of Abraham’s Sacrifice  (Gen. 22)  1575  

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Genesis 25-50

Parker, Samuel – Bibliotheca biblica: being a Commentary upon all the Books of the Old and New Testament, gathered out of the genuine writings of Fathers, Ecclesiastical Historians and acts of councils down to the year of our Lord 451, vol. 1, Part 2, Gen. 25-50  d. 1730

Parker (1681-1730) was an Anglican.

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Genesis 28

MacDuff, J.R. – Eventide at Bethel, or the Night-Dream of the Desert; an O.T. chapter on Providence and Grace on Gen. 28  1878  310 pp.

MacDuff (1818–1895)was an evangelical Church of Scotland minister who wrote numerous devotional works.

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Genesis 45

Puritan

Rollinson, Francis – Twelve Prophetical Legacies; or, Twelve Sermons upon Jacob’s Last Will, recorded in the 45th chapter of Genesis  1612

* ‘Old-fashioned learning, and singular remarks; its rarity is no great calamity.’

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Archeology and Genesis

Osburn, William – Israel in Egypt; or the Books of Genesis and Exodus Illustrated by Existing Monuments  1856

**  “Not a commentary; but a volume full of interest, which should be studied by all who would understand this portion of history.” – Spurgeon

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The Authenticity and Genuineness of Genesis

See also The Authenticity of the Pentateuch.  For a brief, Scriptural defense that Gen. 1 means exactly what it says, see Kenneth Gentry’s In the Space of Six Days and the further resources on our page: Creation.

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Green, William H. – The Unity of the Book of Genesis  1895  605 pp.

Green (1825–1900) was an imminent Princeton, Hebrew scholar.

“A thorough, scholarly refutation of the documentary hypothesis.” – Cyril J. Barber

Hoffmeier, James – Israel in Egypt: The Evidence for the Authenticity of the Exodus Tradition  Buy  1999

Hoffmeier is Professor of Bible Studies and Archaeology at Wheaton College, Illinois.  See the ‘Buy’ link for a description.

Young, E.J. – ‘The Accuracy of Genesis’  His 17.6  (March 1957): 23-26

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Bible Characters in Gen. 1-12

Whyte, Alexander – Bible Characters, vol. 1

Whyte (1836-1921) was a minister in the Free Church of Scotland and later, post-1900, in the United Free Church of Scotland.

Adam
Eve
Cain

“Cain was a deist; that is, an impenitent theist.” – John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan

Abel
Enoch
Jubal
Noah

“In Noah we have the first account of justification by grace.” – John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan, see Gen. 6:8-9

Ham
Nimrod
Terah

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The Patriarchs

Blaikie, William G. – Heroes of Israel: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph & Moses  1894  530 pp.

Blaikie (1820–1899) was of the Free Church of Scotland.

Delitzsch, Franz – ‘The Character of Patriarchal History’  7 pp.

Delitzsch was a conservative German, Lutheran theologian and Hebraist, known for his contribution to the Keil-Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary.  His translation of the N.T. into Hebrew is still considered the standard translation.  The Free Churchman, ‘Rabbi’ John Duncan, said that Delitzsch “stood firm in maintenance of the divine authority and inspiration of the whole Old Testament” at a time when many “seemed willing to surrender.”

Thomas, William Henry Griffith – Genesis, a Devotional Commentary  Buy  1946

‘Possibly the most helpful devotional exposition of Genesis available.  Pastors will find the material on Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph (chaps. 12-50) to be unsurpassed!’ – Cyril J. Barber

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Abraham

“If Adamic blood flows in all our veins, Abrahamic blood flows spiritually in every Christian’s veins.”

John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan

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Buddicom, R.P. – Friendship with God Illustrated in the Life of Abraham, vol. 1, 2

Of his work on Exodus:  **  “Able discourses, using the Exodus spiritually and wisely.” – Spurgeon

Dykes, J. Oswald – Abraham, the Friend of God  1877  17 devotional messages based on Gen. 12-25

Blunt, Henry – Twelve Lectures on the History of Abraham and Jacob  1839

**  “Like the rest of this author’s lectures.  Good, plain addresses.” – Spurgeon

Meyer, F.B. – Abraham, or the Obedience of Faith  n.d.  205 pp.

Meyer (1847–1929) was an English, baptist pastor who wrote numerous, very good devotional works.

Whyte, Alexander – Abraham  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Sarah

Whyte, Alexander – Sarah  in Bible Characters, vol. 1

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Lot

Whyte, Alexander – Lot  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Isaac

Blunt, Henry – Twelve Lectures on the History of Abraham and Jacob  1839

**  “Like the rest of this author’s lectures.  Good, plain addresses.” – Spurgeon

Bouchier, Barton – History of Isaac as Recorded in the Bible  1865

**  “A charming book, in Bouchier’s gracious style.” – Spurgeon

Rawlinson, George – Isaac and Jacob: their Lives and Times  1890

Rawlinson (1812–1902)

“Still contains valuable insights for preachers today.” – Cyril J. Barber

Whyte, Alexander – Isaac  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Rebekah

Whyte, Alexander – Rebekah  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Jacob

Cowper, William – Jacob’s Wrestling with God  1608  148 pp.

Cowper was a Scottish bishop.

Meyer, F.B. – Israel, a Prince with God, the Story of Jacob Retold  n.d.  200 pp.

Rawlinson, George – Isaac and Jacob: their Lives and Times  1890

Rawlinson (1812–1902)

“Still contains valuable insights for preachers today.” – Cyril J. Barber

Whyte, Alexander – Jacob  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Esau

Whyte, Alexander – Esau  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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On Joseph

The Best

Blaikie, William G. – ‘Jacob & Joseph’  1894  82 pp.  being Part 2 of Heroes of Israel: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph & Moses, pp. 204-286  1894

Blaikie (1820–1899) was of the Free Church of Scotland.

Lawson, George – Lectures on Joseph, 2 vols.  Buy  1807 & 1812

*** ‘Dr. Lawson had a fertile mind, and a heart alive both to the human and divine side of truth.  He writes with pleasing simplicity of style.  One of the highest compliments to this book is found in the fact that a distinguished American scholar issued much of it as his own [Lawson was Scottish].’ – Spurgeon

Smith, Thornley – History of Joseph viewed in connection with the Antiquities of Egypt, and the times in which he lived  Buy  1875

*** – ‘Written under the full light of the most recent archeological discoveries, modern scholarship, and theological science, it is THE book on the subject.  Now we have it, we cannot dispense with it.’ – Homilist, quoted by Spurgeon

Winsolw, Octavius – The Fullness of Christ: Unfolded in the History of Joseph  Buy  1863

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More on Joseph

Cumming, John – The Last of the Patriarchs; or, Lessons Chiefly from the Life of Joseph  1856

**  “Fitted for popular reading: ministers need more thought.” – Spurgeon

Gibson, Timothy – Lectures on the History of Joseph  1848

*  “Very respectable sermons, bringing out the gospel of Joseph’s history.” – Spurgeon

Kirk, Thomas – The Life of Joseph  Buy  Reprinted by Klock & Klock

“Of the utmost value for the pastor who preaches on Bible characters.” – Cyril J. Barber

Meyer, F.B. – Joseph: Beloved, Hated, Exalted  1890 & 1910  192 pp. 

Meyer (1847–1929) was an English, baptist pastor who wrote numerous, very good devotional works.

“A careful unfolding of the fascinating story of Joseph and God’s dealings with him.  Devotional.  Ideal for laymen.” – Cyril J. Barber

Taylor, William – Joseph the Prime Minister  1886  260 pp.  

Taylor (1829–1895) was a Scottish Presbyterian turned Congregationalist who later ministered in America at Broadway Tabernacle Congregationalist Church in New York.

“Dynamic and inspiring messages by a former Lyman Beecher lecturer at Yale and L. P. Stone lecturer at Princeton.” – Cyril J. Barber

Wardlaw, Ralph – Life of Joseph and the Last Years of Jacob  1845

**Wardlaw, though rather wordy, is always instructive.’ – Spurgeon

Whyte, Alexander – Joseph  in Bible Characters, vol. 1  d. 1921

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Related Pages

Whole Bible Commentaries

Old Testament Commentaries