by Joseph Addison Alexander
"In all respects a work of the highest merit".- C. H. Spurgeon
‘Alexander’s commentaries on Acts and Mark I regarded as models, as nearly perfection in their kind as human skill could make them, and I have been in the habit, not only of recommending them, but of insisting on my classes procuring and studying them’. J.H. Thornwell
THE materials of this book were collected in a course of academical instruction, and prepared for publication, in the first instance, with a view to the peculiar wants of ministers and students. But after the first chapter was in type, the writer was induced to recommence the work upon a new plan, in the hope of making it more generally useful, by the reduction of its size, and the omission of all matter supposed to be interesting only to professional or educated readers. This will account for the prominence given to the English version, the exclusion (for the most part) of the Greek text, and the absence of any detailed reference to other writers. It will be found, however, that the constant subject of the exposition is the inspired original, and that one of its main objects is to perfect the translation, so as to place the English reader as nearly as possible on the same footing with the student of the Greek text. In attempting to effect the change of form already mentioned, it has sometimes been difficult to obliterate all trace of the original design; but this, it is hoped, will be considered rather a literary blemish than a practical inconvenience. The numerous citations have been carefully selected, for the benefit of those who wish to master the analogy and usage of the Scriptures; and the frequent reference from one part of the commentary to another is intended to fit it for occasional consultation as well as for continuous perusal. It may not be superfluous to add, that the purpose of the work, as indicated by the title, is simple explanation of the sense and illustration of the history, leaving all further uses, and among the rest all practical improvement, to those who may avail themselves of its assistance, and especially to such as may employ it in historical as well as exegetical instruction.
PRINCETON, June 1, 1857.
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