Theological Research from a Distance: Resources for the coming liturgical year

Many of the links below lead to material that requires a Keller Library login.  If you are a General Theological Seminary student, or if you enroll in Theological Research from a Distance, you’ll have access to all these wonderful resources!

bible_studyChristmas lites, Thanksgiving and Lectionary Year A are just around the corner (and in that chronological order!). The Keller Library can’t help you cook a turkey or trim a tree (though we have a great collection of The visit of St. Nicholas, by Clement Clark Moore, and there is this ebook available: Preparing Sunday dinner: a collaborative approach to worship and preaching , if you find it helpful).

But we have a lot more to help you prepare for RCL Lectionary Year A.

The Gospel of Matthew is read on most Sundays in Year A. It is important to have a good commentary on the whole gospel to avoid allowing interpretation to degenerate into “sound bites.” Some of the leading commentaries, such as the Davies and sunday_dinnerAllison volume in the International Critical Commentary, Craig Keener’s The Gospel of Matthew: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary, or Ulrich Luz’s volume in the Hermeneia series are not yet available as ebooks. Important books on paper should not be ignored.

However, there are a number of commentaries that are available from the Keller Library on ebook for those who are at a distance or interpreting the scripture while our library is closed. Craig Evans’ Matthew in the New Cambridge Bible Commentary series is one of the best new commentaries available in any format. It is thorough and detailed, with substantial sections giving explanations of historical background for the text. Another major commentary available on ebook is by David Turner in the Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament.

feminist companionThere are briefer commentaries, like O. Wesley Allen’s in the Fortress biblical preaching commentaries. Amy-Jill Levine has two very useful works that analyze Matthew from feminist perspectives: A Feminist Companion to Matthew, and the Matthew chapter in the Women’s Bible Commentary. You can also find many perspectives on the Gospel of Matthew in the Keller Library’s catalog, including theologian Stanley Hauerwas, or a Jewish perspective, or Thomas Aquinas or St. Jerome in our ebook collection.

Of course, there are other scriptures besides the Gospels in Lectionary Year A. Romans is the most common source of the Epistle through Lent. We have ebooks on Romans by Luke Timothy Johnson, Karl Barth, Marvin Pate, Origen and Peter Abelard, among others. First Peter occurs frequently in the season after Easter. Commentaries on ebook by Duane Watson, Pheme Perkins, Reinhard Feldmeier, and others are in our collection. Check our catalog for ebooks on the various Old Testament books. In the spring, I will put out another post covering Year A after Pentecost, when there is focused attention on the Hebrew Scriptures in track 1.

Feasting on the Word is a commentary on the RCL with contributions from some of our Faculty. It is really worth using. For Year A, Volume 2 and Volume 4 are available on ebook, and the complete set is available on paper. I expect that there will be more lectionary commentaries available on ebook as time goes by: for instance, we have Years B and C for Fred Craddock’s Preaching through the Christian year.

Enjoy your holidays and your preparation for the new liturgical year!

Drew Kadel, Director of the Christoph Keller, Jr. Library

Father Kadel has been director of the Library at the General Theological Seminary since 2003; he blogs at

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