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Theology

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Find Bible Commentaries

This guide is an introduction to the basic resources for doing research in theology and for beginning a biblical exegesis paper.

Find Bible Commentaries

The following outline presents an approach to finding materials for a biblical exegesis paper.  The other pages of this guide provide information about resources that can be consulted in addition to the ones mentioned below.

For an introduction to the context of the exegesis passage:

  • Begin with Bible dictionary to provide background information, definitions, dates, and perhaps a beginning bibliography.
  • Recommended reference work: The Anchor Bible Dictionary. New York, N.Y. : Doubleday, c1992. (O’Neill Reference BS440 .A54 1992).
  • There are other possibly useful bible dictionaries and commentaries in the same reference area.

For book-length commentaries:

  • For finding biblical commentaries on specific books of the Bible, do the following keyword search in the catalog: [book title] bible commentaries.  Example: Isaiah bible commentaries
  • Look for an appropriate volume in the Anchor Bible series.  Keyword search: anchor bible gospel john
  • Once you are in the stacks looking for books found through the catalog, be sure to browse the shelves for similar material.

For articles and essays

  • Go to ATLA Religion Database.
  • For articles on biblical passages, click on Scriptures at the top left.
  • Search tip: If you have a biblical passage with chapter and verse numbers, click on Expand to see a list of chapter numbers.  By clicking on the relevant chapter number; it will be entered into the Search box.  It’s possible to do this also for specific verse numbers by clicking on Expand after the chapter number.
  • Look for bibliographies in any books or articles you find.
  • Use any other relevant indexes to find additional materials: Old Testament Abstracts and New Testament Abstracts.
  • Search tip: You can search several of the religion databases together.  Click on Choose Databases (located just below the top bar and near the center).

An Enduring Text

Codex Sinaiticus

Codex Sinaiticus, British Library

In July 2009, the surviving pages of the Codex Sinaiticus, a manuscript containing the Christian Bible in Greek, including the oldest complete copy of the New Testament, became available on the web for study. The physical pages have been housed in four separate locations around the world for more than 150 years.