In Israel, Adventist Scholars Meet to Plan New Bible Commentary Series
More than 60 Seventh-day Adventist biblical scholars came together in the lands of the Bible to integrate thought and strategy as they planned a new reference series, to be known as the Seventh-day Adventist International Bible Commentary (SDAIBC).
Senior project editor Jacques Doukhan, professor of Hebrew and Old Testament exegesis at theSeventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary in Berrien Springs, Michigan, United States, identified three conference goals. The event was held at Kibbutz Maagan, on the southern shore of the Sea of Galilee, from June 6 to 11.
“We are here,” Doukhan said, “to enjoy the land where Jesus walked as we taste again of the land of promise. We are also here to think, to reflect, and to clarify our responses to the hermeneutical and methodological concerns related to our project. Most important of all, we are here, not just to meet with each other, but to reconnect with the Lord, who is and will be the fulfillment of our best dreams.”
Doukhan also introduced the executive committee that planned and will administer the project. Committee members include professors Fernando Canale, Richard Davidson, Jiri Moskala, Teresa Reeve, and Tom Shepherd, all of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary; Paul Petersen, ofAndrews University’s College of Arts and Sciences; Kwabena Donkor and Ekkehardt Mueller, associate directors of the General Conference Biblical Research Institute; Ed Zinke, former BRI associate director and senior advisor to the Adventist Review; and Scott Cady, committee liason with Pacific Press, publishers of the new commentary.
Basing his devotional remarks on Ecclesiastes 7:8, Doukhan said notwithstanding the compelling importance of linguistics and exegesis, or prayer and the Holy Spirit, no student should disregard the compelling importance of time spent in God’s Word to a proper exposition of the text.
Davidson, who is the seminary’s J. N. Andrews professor of Old Testament interpretation, urged all scholars to respect their own finitude and the unassailable authority of Scripture, bearing in mind the words of Isaiah as they work on their commentaries: “But on this one will I look: on him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, and who trembles at My word” (Isa. 66:2).
—Lael O. Caesar, Adventist World associate editor, reporting from Israel, with AW staff