By John J Stubbs. 453pp. £17.95. Published by John Ritchie Ltd., 40 Beansburn, Kilmarnock, Scotland, KA3 1RH. ISBN 1-904064-19-1, and in N. America for Gospel Folio Press.
The fourth book of Moses describes the wilderness experience of God’s people on their protracted journey from Egypt to Canaan. Obviously, its teaching holds particular relevance for God’s people today who, similarly, are journeying through the wilderness of this world, sustained by the prospect of reaching eventually the better land of God’s provision. The intention of this excellent series of commentaries is to provide not only technical help as to the true meaning of Bible text, but also to provide sensible application of the substance of the portion to benefit the reader. John Stubbs’ commentary handsomely meets these requirements, and within its compass he has rendered a great service to us all. Dealing with a book like Numbers, in which much detail is recorded for our learning, the author has obviously spent much time in judging what typical teaching is allowable within the confines of the text. His painstaking approach is apparent in the way in which he deals extensively with some of the more difficult portions of the book. Wherever possible, his thoughts are sectioned under helpful headings (often alliterative headings of the kind so loved by speakers).
His style of writing is clear and precise and he presents vivid accounts of the narrative sections of Numbers raising many points of interest that other writers have not considered. Without wishing to denigrate any of the well known expositional books on Numbers (our brother gives them honourable mention in his ‘bibliography’) I suggest we have in this recent production as useful a resource as any of those already available – one that enables the dedicated student to come to terms with the entirety of the book.