Lawson’s new commentary of Psalms profitable
Psalms 76-150 (Volume 16 in the Holman Old Testament Commentary Series), by Steve Lawson, (Holman: 400 pages), $20.
Even though I only preached a few sermons from Psalms last year, this volume was a great addition to my shelves because it beats with a passion for all Christians to enjoy and profit from the Psalms. That is, although this commentary is built on solid exegesis, the goal is not an excellent sermon but an excellent life.
The pastoral ministry of Steve Lawson has been an inspiration to me for several years now. Here is a pastor who combines passionate Reformed theology, energetic expository preaching, and serious evangelistic fervor. All three of these are blended into the writing of this commentary on Psalms 76-150 (he also wrote the Holman volume on Psalms 1-75).
Turn to the introduction for Lawson’s three-page summary of the church’s use of Psalms since the Reformation – Luther, Calvin, Bunyan, Edwards, Carey, Spurgeon, Lloyd-Jones, etc. – and see that Lawson knows his church history.
“God has used the Psalms to bless his servants over the centuries in immeasurable ways. This is only a sampling of countless other examples that could be offered here. The power of the Psalms to capture and conquer human hearts is unsurpassed. These incidents from church history are intended to whet your appetite for the Psalms with the hope that you will delve more fully into this book.”
“The Psalms is a vast ocean of truth, but it is a challenge to stretch one’s arms around it. Consequently, the Psalms often remains untaught and unpreached. To reverse such a trend, this brief commentary on the Psalms, limited as it is, is a humble attempt to make this great book more easily accessible to you. These pages survey each of the psalms in the second half of the Psalter and are intended to help you grasp their richness. I hope this book will encourage you to teach and preach the Psalms. My prayer is that David’s treasury will become all the more treasured by you – for God’s glory and your good.”
In addition to the normal use of a commentary as a tool for preachers, I heartily recommend this volume as a devotional aid. Meditate on the biblical chapter, and then read the three to five pages from Lawson for devotional profit.
And, if for no other reason, get this book for all the “power-quotes” from great figures in church history, each relevant to the chapter under discussion.