Survey of the Hebrew Scriptures

Course #: TH503A

Bible dictionaries (BS 440)

Start with these for general information; the links below lead to the Primo record for the print item (no ebooks)

About Bible commentaries

  • Commentaries help scholars study Scripture through critical explanations and interpretations of Biblical texts
  • Commentaries vary from the very scholarly, well-researched ones to others that are designed for the lay person with non-academic language
  • Some commentaries do exegesis (getting the meaning the original audience would have understood) by focusing what the biblical books meant in their original setting. Other commentaries focus on current applications of biblical books
  • There are many Bible commentary sets, often one volume for each book of the Bible, but also one covering subsets (e.g., gospels, epistles, etc.)
  • While scholars may own an entire set and keep them as one unit, many libraries (including Laurier) shelve most sets according to the book of the Bible
    • some exceptions, like the Word Biblical Commentary (BS 491.2 .W67)
  • You may find commentaries online, but these tend to be older and in the public domain, e.g., Biblegateway
    • i.e., many of the commentaries you will consult will only be available in print
    • Google Books has previews of some titles, as with this example
  • Commentary sets are expensive, so the Laurier Library does not necessarily own each volume of a set (often in other TUG libraries)

Finding Bible commentaries

  • Search Primo for:
    • [book] commentaries (subject)​
    • [book] criticism (subject)
  • Note the locations, and the call number
    • in the Waterloo campus library, the commentaries will be found on the 5th floor
  • Remember that once you find one commentary, you will see others on the same book of the bible
    • see listing at bottom of this page

Suggested Bible commentary titles (not exhaustive)

Finding other scholarly sources

  • articles - ATLA Religion Database
    • Use the "Scriptures" link at the top of the page to drill down to your Bible book, or passage
    • in the results, limit by Source Type (e.g., Academic Journals, Essays, etc.)
  • ebooks - ebrary (full text search within the books)
  • books - Primo
    • in addition to the commentaries and critical books, other books can be found by searching these subject words:
      • Bible Prophets
      • Bible Old Testament
      • Bible Pentateuch
  • thesis and dissertations -- ProQuest Dissertations & Theses
    • search "bible" by subject, then add keywords including [book], and/or exegesis

Specific reference sources

Call numbers for commentaries

  • Genesis BS 1231-1235.5
  • Exodus…BS 1241-1245.6
  • Leviticus BS 1251-1255.6
  • Numbers BS 1261-1265.6
  • Deuteronomy BS 1271-1275.6
  • Judges BS 1301-1305.6
  • Joshua BS 1291-1295.6
  • Ruth BS 1311-1315.6
  • I & II Samuel BS 1321-1325.6
  • I & II Kings BS 1331-1335.6
  • I & II Chronicles BS 1341-1345.6
  • Ezra BS 1351-1355.6
  • Nehemiah BS 1361-1365.6
  • Esther BS 1371-1375.6
  • Job BS 1411-1415.6
  • Psalms BS 1419-1451
  • Proverbs BS 1461-1465.6
  • Ecclesiastes BS 1471-1475.6
  • Song of Solomon BS 1481-1485.6
  • Isaiah BS 1511-1515.6
  • Jeremiah BS 1521-1525.6
  • Lamentations BS 1531-1535.6
  • Ezekiel BS 1541-1545.6
  • Daniel BS 1551-1555.6
  • Hosea BS 1561-1565.6
  • Joel BS 1571-1575.6
  • Amos BS 1581-1585.6
  • Obadiah BS 1591-1595.6
  • Jude BS 2810-2815.6
  • Jonah BS 1601-1605.6
  • Micah BS 1611-1615.6
  • Nahum BS 1621-1625.6
  • Habakkuk BS 1631-1635.6
  • Zephaniah BS 1641-1645.6
  • Haggai BS 1651-1655.6
  • Zechariah BS 1661-1665.6
  • Malachi BS 1671-1675.6