series: Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible

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Exodus recounts the origins of ancient Israel, but it is also a book of religious symbols. How should it be interpreted, especially in light of modern historical-critical study? In this addition to an acclaimed series, a respected scholar offers a theological reading of Exodus that highlights Aquinas's interpretations of the text. As with other volumes in the series, this commentary is ideal for those called to ministry, serving as a rich resource for preachers, teachers, students, and study groups.

The general editor for the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible is R. R. Reno (editor, First Things). Series editors include Robert W. Jenson (Center of Theological Inquiry); Robert Louis Wilken (University of Virginia); Ephraim Radner (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto); Michael Root (Catholic University of America); and George Sumner (Episcopal Diocese of Dallas).

Volumes in the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible

R. R. Reno
(editor, First Things) on Genesis
Thomas Joseph White (Thomistic Institute at the Angelicum in Rome) on Exodus
Ephraim Radner (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Leviticus
David L. Stubbs (Western Theological Seminary) on Numbers
Telford Work (Westmont College) on Deuteronomy
Paul Hinlicky (Roanoke College) on Joshua
Laura A. Smit (Calvin University) and Stephen Fowl (Loyola University Maryland) on Judges & Ruth
Francesca Aran Murphy (University of Notre Dame) on 1 Samuel
Robert Barron (Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles) on 2 Samuel
Peter J. Leithart (Theopolis Institute for Bible, Liturgy, and Culture) on 1 & 2 Kings
Peter J. Leithart (Theopolis Institute for Bible, Liturgy, and Culture) on 1 & 2 Chronicles
Matthew Levering (Mundelein Seminary) on Ezra & Nehemiah
Samuel Wells (St. Martin-in-the-Fields Anglican Church, London) and George Sumner (Episcopal Diocese of Dallas) on Esther & Daniel
Ellen T. Charry (Princeton Theological Seminary) on Psalms 1-50
Jason Byassee (Vancouver School of Theology) on Psalms 101-150
Daniel J. Treier (Wheaton College Graduate School) on Proverbs & Ecclesiastes
Paul J. Griffiths on Song of Songs
Robert W. Jenson (1930-2017; Center of Theological Inquiry) on Ezekiel
Phillip Cary (Eastern University) on Jonah
Stanley Hauerwas (Duke Divinity School) on Matthew
David Lyle Jeffrey (Baylor University) on Luke
Jaroslav Pelikan (1923-2006; Yale University) on Acts
Kimlyn J. Bender (Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University) on 1 Corinthians
Kathryn Greene-McCreight (The Episcopal Church at Yale) on Galatians
Michael Allen (Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando) on Ephesians
George Hunsinger (Princeton Theological Seminary) on Philippians
Christopher R. Seitz (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Colossians
Douglas Farrow (McGill University) on 1 & 2 Thessalonians
Risto Saarinen (University of Helsinki) on the Pastoral Epistles with Philemon & Jude
Douglas Harink (The King's University College) on 1 & 2 Peter
Joseph L. Mangina (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto) on Revelation


"Thomas Aquinas left us no commentary on Exodus. But Thomas Joseph White succeeds in giving us a sense of what one from his hand might look like today."

Bruce D. Marshall, Lehman Professor of Christian Doctrine, Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University

"White's reading of Exodus tackles head-on the peculiarly modern conceit that all that stands between the reader of scripture and wise reading is a lack of knowledge--a deficiency of information. Surely, say White and the Catholic tradition to which he hereby contributes, as readers we typically lack the moral formation to see clearly the text and its truths. As such, we take a journey in tandem with the Israelites: from darkness to light and from slavery in Egypt to life-giving service (and understanding) under God's law. Drawing deeply on the fourfold sense of scripture in dialogue with Aquinas and many other serious theological voices, this commentary will strengthen and challenge all readers in pursuit of the God to whom the book of Exodus bears witness."

Richard S. Briggs, lecturer in Old Testament and director of biblical studies, Cranmer Hall, St. John's College, Durham University

"In his introduction to this extraordinary commentary and reflection on Exodus, Fr. Thomas Joseph White, OP, writes that 'the classical Catholic approach to the moral law on Exodus is in many ways convergent with Judaism.' Thus I can now better understand why Maimonides (who so greatly influenced Thomas Aquinas, Fr. White's auctoritas) taught that Jews like me may learn Torah with Christians like Fr. White, who accept the Torah as divine revelation. In addition to that theological commonality (with differences to be sure), I very much identify with Fr. White's philosophically informed way of reading the Torah. Indeed, 'those who fear the Lord speak to one another . . . who fear the Lord and think of his name' (Malachi 3:16)."

Rabbi David Novak, University of Toronto

Praise for the Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible

"What a splendid idea! Many preachers have been longing for more commentaries that are not only exegetical but theological in the best sense: arising out of the conviction that God, through his Word, still speaks in our time. For those of us who take our copies of Martin Luther's Galatians and Karl Barth's Romans from the shelves on a regular basis, this new series in that tradition promises renewed vigor for preaching, and therefore for the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church in our time."

Fleming Rutledge, author of The Bible and The New York Times and The Seven Last Words from the Cross

"This new series places the accent on 'theological' and reflects current interpretive ferment marked by growing resistance to the historical-critical project. It may be that scripture interpretation is too important to be left to the exegetes, and so a return to the theologians. We will wait with great anticipation for this new series, at least aware that the outcomes of interpretation are largely determined by the questions asked. It is never too late to ask better questions; with a focus on the theological tradition, this series holds the promise of asking interpretive questions that are deeply grounded in the primal claims of faith. The rich promise of the series is indicated by the stature and erudition of the commentators. Brazos has enormous promises to keep with this project, and we wait with eagerness for its appearing!"

Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary

"The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible makes a most welcome contribution to the church, the academic world, and the general public at large. By enlisting a wide range of Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox theologians who differ on much, but who agree on the truth of the Nicene Creed, the series also represents ecumenical activity of the very best kind. It is always a daunting challenge to expound the church's sacred book both simply and deeply, but this impressive line-up of authors is very well situated for the attempt."

Mark A. Noll, University of Notre Dame

"Preachers and teachers in particular, but thoughtful Christians more generally, have long lamented the slide of biblical scholarship into hyper-specialized critical studies of ancient texts in remote historical context. It is no wonder, therefore, that the Brazos Theological Commentary is being so warmly welcomed. The outstanding array of authors, beginning with Jaroslav Pelikan's splendid commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, is, at long last, reclaiming the Bible as the book of the living community of faith that is the church."

Richard John Neuhaus, author of American Babylon: Notes of a Christian Exile

"Contemporary application of the Bible to life is the preacher's business. But no worthy contemporary application is possible without a thorough understanding of the ancient text. The Brazos Theological Commentary exists to provide an accessible authority so that the preacher's application will be a ready bandage for all the hurts of life. We who serve the pulpit want a commentary we can understand, and those who hear us expect us to give them a usable word. The Brazos Commentary offers just the right level of light to make illuminating the word the joy it was meant to be."

Calvin Miller, author of A Hunger for the Holy and Loving God Up Close

"For pastors, wanting to get at the theological heart of a text, there is some good stuff. When I am preaching, I usually try to take a peek at the Brazos volume."

Nijay K. Gupta, Portland Seminary

The Author

  1. Thomas Joseph White OP

    Thomas Joseph White OP

    Thomas Joseph White, OP (DPhil, Oxford University), is director of the Thomistic Institute at the Angelicum in Rome. He is the author of several books, including Wisdom in the Face of Modernity: A Thomistic Study in Natural Theology and The Incarnate...

    Continue reading about Thomas Joseph White OP


"[The Brazos Theological Commentary on the Bible] series seeks to restore the doctrinal interpretation of scripture by offering a range of interdenominational commentaries on individual books of the Bible. . . . The latest volume in the series is Thomas Joseph White's commentary on the book of Exodus. The work done here is excellent. White has been bold enough not only to grapple with the rich symbolism and moral theology of Exodus, but to do so with the constant support of patristic, medieval, and modern systematic theology, leaning especially on the work of St. Thomas Aquinas, whose analysis of the dispensations of divine law is especially helpful. Best of all is the Thomistic love of careful distinction and dialectical reasoning White brings to the text. . . . While White's commentary is short compared to the greatest of the medieval works on which it is modeled, its appearance makes one hope that we are entering a new era of scripture scholarship."

Elliot Milco,

First Things

"White often addresses difficult biblical-theological questions via the narrative of Exodus, and this is a welcome addition to a commentary on this book. . . . The truly unique contribution of this new commentary is the interaction with Aquinas and Augustine on the text of Exodus. . . . White's theological insights are helpful and meaningful for Christians on both the moral and spiritual level, although perhaps more helpful for Catholic Christians. Likewise, White's defense of the omnipotence and benevolence of God, the Christological/typological interpretation of the exodus event, and his attention to the threefold use of the law in Exodus 20, provide numerous insights for those devoted to the task of interpreting Exodus."

Joshua M. Philpot,

Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

"While [White] draws significantly on Aquinas's Summa theologica, the author also makes use of a variety of doctrinal and patristic works, and occasionally those of more contemporary scholars, including some biblicists. The point of this volume, and of the whole series, is not to read Christian tradition back into the biblical text but to appreciate and appropriate the theology of Exodus in conversation with the Christian tradition."

John R. Barker, OFM,

The Bible Today