My absolute favorite podcast right now is The Ten Minute Bible Hour. He is slowly working his way through the Gospel of Matthew 10 minutes at a time. Do you know what the only problem is? He’s over 100 episodes into the podcast and all he’s covered are the first 6 chapters of Matthew. At this rate, he’ll be done sometime in the next five years. I’m not complaining because I enjoy it, but if I want some good Bible commentary of the Gospels, I need a faster rate. That’s why Jesus of the Gospels is perfect for your Bible lessons. Even better, it’s designed for teens so you can use it with your high schoolers as a teen Bible commentary.
(I’ve been compensated for my time, but I was quite happy to read The Jesus of the Gospels for free, it’s going to be added to my list of resources on my Gospels page, and I’ve got a few affiliate links in here)
What is The Jesus of the Gospels?
The Jesus of the Gospels came to be when the author realized there was nothing for his kids to give them an explanation of the context behind Bible passages and WHY certain passages are in there, and the significance of certain phrases.
So, he set out to research and put this book together.
Can, you already see why I wanted to read this book? It is exactly the Bible commentary I want on my shelves.
Jesus of the Gospels first explains what the gospels are and how they were included, and then goes into an in-depth explanation of each gospel.
An in-depth Bible commentary for high school teens
I was all set to tell you about this in-depth Gospels Bible commentary, and then I was looking over at the Kregel Academy blog and got distracted.
Never mind focus, you can get a free Bible commentary on the book of Romans if you sign up for their newsletter! It’s right there on their homepage.
There are five chapters in this book, but these are massive 100-page chapters. I wouldn’t mind an outline for each chapter with some more page numbers but I guess the glossary serves that same purpose.
Now that I’m looking at the glossary at the back, it’s nicely impressive, so my wish is fulfilled, I guess.
Like any good Bible commentary, you don’t have to read this in order, look up the passage you’re studying and read a page or two of commentary, and see just what is going on and why.
Let’s get some perspectives from teens.
Lately, we’ve been watching The Chosen TV series. If you haven’t seen it, then you need to go watch it.
I’ve picked three events depicted in the TV show for the kids to read commentary on and give me their opinions. These are pretty much stream-of-consciousness responses.
The Calling of Peter, Andrew, James, and John Matthew 4:17-25
Batman: It had connections, I had never thought of before. I had never put Jesus and Moses together as ideas. It is a good resource for teaching and learning about the Bible.
Jesus’ first public miracle, water to wine John 2:1-11
Princess: It had a lot of details I hadn’t noticed before. It’s very text-booky. It would be good for more information.
Jesus’ talk with Nicodemus John 2L23-3:21
Superman: I chose to read that chapter because before watching The Chosen, I had no clue about Nicodemus. Tomorrow I’ll read the actual chapter he’s in, because it talks about it, not giving specifics. I think you should first read the actual chapter it’s about.
A Mom’s perspective on a Bible commentary for teens
Unlike most books written to teens, it does not talk down to them.
It does not feel the need to “be relevant” and add random cartoons with funny jokes.
I’ll admit, I would happily abscond with this into my personal study library and never let the kids see it again.
It’s that well written.
After reading the passage on the genealogy.
THE GENEALOGY people!
View this post on Instagram
I got this book for a #sponsoredpost * I’m going to write. I’m only to the genealogy in Matthew and I’m noticing a few things: 1. It’s been a bit since I’ve read a book in this style, so I need to mentally switch gears 2. It had some interesting observations on Matthew’s genealogy and why the women were included that I hadn’t heard before (notice which women were included) 3. I learned David’s name when transposed to. Umbers from Hebrew adds up to 14, which is the same number of generations in each set 4. The phrasing at the end is “husband of Mary,” I’ve taught on that every Christmas for 10 years and read/studied it every Christmas for longer but for some reason that phrasing didn’t stick out as much before this *though, this Instagram post isn’t sponsored, I just wanted to share what I was learning, but at the same time wanted to be entirely clear I hadn’t bought this but was given it. Okay, my brain is saying stop reading for the night. #ihsnet #biblestudy
I shared what I was learning on Instagram (I may ramble a bit, and it was posted at almost midnight my time).
Then I shared it again with my small group.
As you can see from my post, this is written in a scholarly style. It’s got so many references, it’s giving me flashbacks to my freshman Bible class in college.
It has pull outs to give more in-depth information
Sometimes, you need a pull-out to give more information on an item to explain it more, without interrupting the narrative of what you’re saying.
I like this recent trend towards doing that in books. I know it’s not that recent, but previously this was limited to children’s books, and it’s slowly making its way into adult nonfiction books.
How to use The Jesus of the Gospels
I’m a big fan of Precept Bible studies, and I’m going to give the same advice they give.
First, read the passage through. Then read it again and take notes on your thoughts, look up any words you don’t understand the definition of, and generally tear it apart on your own. Once you have started to form your own conclusions, THEN go to The Jesus of the Gospels and get more input and some more background information.
Who is this teen Bible commentary for?
This teen Bible commentary is for your family if:
- You want a serious Bible commentary that won’t treat your high school student as a child.
- You treat the Bible as a serious book to be studied. It is not approaching the Bible as a myth full of fanciful stories.
- You want serious Bible discussion.
This commentary is not for your family if:
- You’re looking for a light Bible study.
- Your students aren’t ready for something this text dense. If my friend handed this to one of her children, it would be too overwhelming.