I am reading an electronic copy of Ajith Fernando’s recently published preaching commentary on the book of Deuteronomy, Deuteronomy: Loving Obedience to a Loving God (Crossway, 2012) (review forth coming). In the preface he writes something I have never seen before in a commentary and I just loved it and now expect this work to be GOOD! He writes:
My basic approach to the passages was to first do an inductive study of them using only the Biblical text with a very wide margin and my lead pencil and color pencils. Only after this did I check the commentaries for clarification, correction, and enrichment. I am so grateful to Drs. Robert Traina and Daniel Fuller who introduced me to the thrill of discovering riches from the Word through inductive study.
Awesome! I know some people who read this may be thinking, “man what is with Brian and his pushing inductive study all the time? didn’t he already go to seminary?!” Well, they don’t teach inductive Bible study at seminary, well, not most. You may learn it at Asbury where the Late Robert Traina was professor, but I haven’t heard of it being explicitly taught anywhere else, and I think it is a shame.
But anyways, I thought it was pretty cool to see Fernando talk about how he approached each passage in Deuteronomy over the 8 years it took him to write the commentary!
For those interested he also noted Christopher Wright’s Deuteronomy (Hendrickson, 1996) as the most helpful for preaching.
I wonder, have you heard much preaching out of the book of Deuteronomy besides the famous Shema passage?
Also, just to be clear, this is not an academic commentary, but rather really, a series of “expository sermons” on all the passages of the book, in this case, Deuteronomy.