More Information
ISBN: 9781783681556
Imprint: Langham Global Library
Format: Paperback
Dimensions (mm): 229 x 152 x 13
Publication Date: 30/06/2019
Pages: 238
Series: Asia Bible Commentary Series
Language: English

Ezra and Nehemiah

A Pastoral and Contextual Commentary


The books of Ezra and Nehemiah illustrate how leaders of God’s people confronted the challenges facing the Jews during the post-exilic period of Israel. Zerubbabel inspires the people of God to rebuild the temple; Ezra leads them in renewing their faith in God; and Nehemiah rebuilds the wall and, importantly, the people as well. The examples in these books, of leading through challenges and opposition by trusting the Lord and committing to prayer, testify to how God’s gracious hand guides and blesses his people at each step. The careful exposition of these two books provides a valuable model for us to balance prayer and action with contextual application, and how the full obedience of leaders can lead to communities being transformed.

The Asia Bible Commentary series empowers Christian believers in Asia to read the Bible from within their respective contexts. Holistic in its approach to the text, each exposition of the biblical books combines exegesis and application. The ultimate goal is to strengthen the Body of Christ in Asia by providing pastoral and contextual exposition of every book of the Bible.

Author Bios

Joseph Too Shao

JOSEPH TOO SHAO is President and Professor of Old Testament at the Biblical Seminary of the Philippines, Manila. He also served as the fourth General Secretary of Asia Theological Association. As an Old Testament scholar, he is an itinerant professor who teaches at many seminaries worldwide.

Rosa Ching Shao
ROSA CHING SHAO is the Professor of Counseling at the Biblical Seminary of the Philippines, Manila, and Asia Graduate School of Theology, Quezon City, Philippines. She holds a PhD in Clinical Psychology and is a licensed counselor and a Certified Solution-Focused Therapist.


Who are better equipped than the Shaos, both long-standing faculty of Biblical Seminary of the Philippines (BSOP) since the early eighties, to offer an Asian perspective when expounding the living messages of Ezra-Nehemiah relevant to the Christian churches in the Majority World? Integrating critical scholarship and practical wisdom, this outstanding commentary is a must for consulting alongside Hugh Williamson’s award-winning volume in the Word Biblical Commentary series.

Stephen Lee, PhD
President and Lam Ko Kit Tak Professor of Biblical Studies,
China Graduate School of Theology, Hong Kong

For decades, the ministries of Joseph and Rosa Shao have been much like the work of the protagonists of these biblical books, Ezra and Nehemiah. Like those great leaders of the past, the authors’ devotion to God and their service to God’s people in strengthening the faith of others have been exemplary. This edition of their commentary on these important texts will perpetuate their ministry and it is a welcome contribution to our understanding of Ezra and Nehemiah.

Bill T. Arnold, PhD
Paul S. Amos Professor of Old Testament Interpretation,
Asbury Theological Seminary, Wilmore, Kentucky, USA

Table of Contents

  1. Commentary
    1. Foreword
    2. Series Preface
    3. Authors’ Preface
    4. Acknowledgments
    5. List of Abbreviations
    6. Introduction
    7. Commentary on Ezra
    8. Commentary on Nehemiah
    9. Selected Bibliography
  2. Topics
    1. Numbers and Asian Counting: Resolving Inconsistencies in the Text
    2. Oral and Written History
    3. Physical or Spiritual Church?
    4. Facing Opposition
    5. God’s Word and Life
    6. God or Human Protection
    7. Shame and Guilt
    8. Cognitive Dissonance and Compassion
    9. Anxiety and Prayer
    10. True Self
    11. Asian Family Leadership
    12. Handling Hostile Situations
    13. Caring for the Poor
    14. Honor and Shame
    15. Leaders and Partners
    16. Retelling and Memory
    17. Commitments and Challenges
    18. Gathering In and Reaching Out
    19. Mentoring

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