Richard D. Phillips
Reviewed by: Zachary R. Keele
Date posted: 06/22/2008
Zechariah, by Richard D. Phillips (Reformed Expository Commentary). Published by P&R Publishing, 2007. Hardback, 351 pages, list price $29.99. Reviewed by OP pastor Zachary R. Keele.
This commentary is part of the Reformed Expository Commentary series, which has a fourfold objective: (1) to be biblical, (2) to be unashamedly doctrinal, (3) to be redemptive-historical, and (4) to be practical (that is, to apply Scripture to contemporary life). Richard D. Phillips's work on Zechariah surely meets this noble goal and therefore is easy to recommend. His work arises out of sermons he preached, so his writing has the edifying and clear tone of a sermon.
The twenty-seven chapters of this volume march through the text of Zechariah. There is no introductory chapter, in accordance with the design of the commentary series. This is not to say, however, that there is a lack of scholarship. Rather, Phillips's thorough and rigorous academic work undergirds everything he writes. When he does deal with a more technical issue, Phillips is quite able to explain it in terms that are helpful for those without a technical background.
In short, this is a pastoral commentary in the best sense. It is Reformed, Christ-centered, and amillennial (the best kind). Its pastoral purpose does limit some of its use for pastors in their study, but it makes it all the more useful for Bible studies and Sunday schools. In fact, I highly recommend this volume for Bible studies.
God gave us the book of Zechariah to encourage and comfort us in Christ. Zechariah directs us to our Savior with marvelous lines and guides us on how we can please our God in these last days as a pilgrim people. This prophetic book is quoted and alluded to heavily in the New Testament. Therefore, I hope churches are boldly and humbly studying Zechariah to grow in the grace of Christ. Phillips has done the church a great service in providing this guide to learn from God's Word.
This book gently and ably takes one through the text of Scripture, showing us Christ and applying his truth to our lives. There is nothing more edifying than going through God's Word, for God sanctifies us by truth, and his word is truth. I hope that many of you will take the blessed journey through Zechariah with Phillips's help. Your eyes will be lifted up to Christ, the Branch who shall build the temple of the Lord, even you and me as living stones.