The Sermon on the Mount commentary,  sources cited to verify background

Citation Style

This site follows Society for Biblical Literature Manual of Style for its citations as far as is practicable. 

The following sources have been cited to support the discussion of specific topics or because they make passing mention of the Sermon on the Mount.

This is an annotated list, which means it has comments on the works in addition to the citation. 

Anthoni, J Floor. “The chemical composition of seawater.” No pages. Cited 18 Oct 2007. Online: no pages.  Provides information on the taste and relative solubility of salts that is relevant background to Matt 5:13 (salt loosing its saltiness).

Beasley-Murray, George R. Jesus and the Kingdom of God. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1986. Reprinted, Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1987. Scholarly work with short sections providing background information on the Beatitudes and the Lord’s Prayer.

Bloch, David, MRBLOCH SALT ARCHIVES. Cited 28 Nov 2008. 1996. Online: A site that unashamedly seeks to popularise the concept that the trade in salt played a significant role in ancient history (including that of Israel). Contains in depth, if poorly authenticated, information on the production and use of salt and is therefore relevant background to Matt 5:13 (salt loosing its saltiness).

Bruce, Frederick Fyvie. The Kingdom of God: A Biblical Survey. Evangelical Quarterly 15 (1934):263-268. Bruce (1910-1990) was a leading evangelical Biblical scholar who taught at a number of British universities.

Dawson, John William. Egypt and Syria: Their Physical Features in Relation to Bible History. 1885; 3rd Ed. London:Religious Tract Society, 1892. Popular account of the physical geography of these regions.

Edwards, Richard A. 1976. A Theology of Q: Eschatology, Prophecy, and Wisdom. Philadelphia, Pa.: Fortress Press.

Einspruch, Henry. The Most Noted Jewish Book in the World. Baltimore: The Lutheran Hebrew Center, 1920. An apologetic work for the essential Jewishness of Jesus. Einspruch was an educated Jewish scholar, who, though never officially converting to Christianity, studied at McCormick Theological Seminary, obtained a doctorate from Gettysburg College, and then went on to lead the Lutheran Jewish Mission.

Frumkin, Amos and Yoel Elitzur. “Historic Dead Sea Level Fluctuations Calibrated with Geological and Archaeological Evidence”. Quaternary Research 57, 334-342 (2002). Scholarly paper which, though not generally relevant, provided a little background to Matt 5:13 (salt loosing its saltiness).

Kirby, Peter. 2001. “The Contents of Q”. No pages. Cited 29 Nov 2010. Online:

Kloppenborg, John S. 2000. Excavating Q: The History and Setting of the Sayings Gospel. Minneapolis, Minn.: Fortress Press.

Kraybill, Donald B. The Upside Down Kingdom. Scotdale, Pa.:Herald Press, 1978. Award winning book by a self confessed ‘theological layman’ with a background in sociology.

Mack, Burton L. 1993. The Lost Gospel: The Book of Q & Christian Origins. San Francisco, Calif.: HarperCollins

Maier, Paul L. Eusabius. The Church History: A New Translation With Commentary. Grand Rapids, Mi.:Kregel, 1999. Accessible translation of the work of a renowned early historian of the church.

McGuckin, John Anthony, ed. The Westminster handbook to Origen. Louisville, Ky.: Westminster John Knox. Scholarly collection of encyclopaedia style articles by a variety of authors.

Miller, Robert J. ed. 1992. The Complete Gospels: Annotated Scholars Version. Sonoma, Calif.: Polebridge Press.

Niemi, Tina M., Zvi Ben-Avraham and Joel R. Gat. The Dead Sea: the lake and its setting. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. Scholarly book arising out of a conference held in Tel Aviv in December 1992.

Noll, Mark A. Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity. Leicester:Inter-Varsity Press, 1997.Readable 335-page introduction to church history. At the time of writing Mark A Noll was McManis professor of Christian Thought and professor of history at Wheaton College. 

Head, Peter M.  “The Date of the Magdalene Papyrus of Matthew (P. Magd. Gr. 17 = P64): A response to C.P. Thiede.” Tyndale Bulletin 46 (1995): 251-285. Cited: 22 Dec 2008. Online: Scholarly response to the controversial dating suggested for the earliest known fragment of Matthew’s Gospel.  

Hull, Edward. Mount Seir, Sinai and Western Palestine: Being a narrative of a scientific expedition. London:Pub. for the Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund by R. Bentley and Son, 1885. Technical account of early scientific exploration in the region.

Kirby, Peter.  “Gospel of Matthew.” n.p. Cited 2007 7 Feb. Online: Translation of Matthew’s Gospel. 

Sanders, Ed Parish. “The Dead Sea Sect and Other Jews: Commonalities, Overlaps and Differences. Pages 7-44 in The Dead Sea scrolls in their historical context. Edited by  Timothy H. Lim, Larry W. Hurtado, A. Graeme Auld and Alison M. Jack. London; New York: T. and T. Clark, 2000. Sanders (1937-), was formerly Professor of Religion at Duke University and well known for his scholarship on Pauline theology.

Schweitzer, Albert. The Quest of the Historical Jesus: A Critical Study of its Progress from Reimarus to Wrede. Translated by W. Montgomery, with a Preface by F. C. Burkitt, D.D. A. & C. Black, Ltd:1910; Translation of Von Reimarus zu Wrede: eine Geschichte der Leben-Jesu-Forschung,1st ed., 1906.Scholarly theological work in which the author provides a comprehensive review of nineteenth century critical scholarship before advancing his own theories. Published during the authors time as an administrator at the Theological College of St.Thomas.

Stein, Robert H. 1996. Jesus the Messiah: A Survey of the Life of Christ. Dowers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press. Scholarly portrayal of the life of Jesus from a professor of theology. Stien (1835-) adopts an evangelical perspective whilst trying to draw in a measure contemporary scholarship.

Steinhorn, Ilana. “In Situ Salt Precipitation at the Dead Sea”, Limnol. Oceanogr. 28(3),1983, 580-583, Accessed 18/10/2007 Article in a scholarly journal. Includes chemical analysis of Dead Sea surface waters, thus providing relevant background to Matt 5:13 (salt loosing its saltiness).

Wright, N. T. Jesus and the Victory of God. Volume 2 of Christian Origins and the Question of God. London:Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 2001. Scholarly analysis of the historical and theological questions surrounding the origins of Christianity. Wright, at the time Canon of Westminster, had also taught New Testament studies at Oxford, Cambridge and McGill Universities. Wright deals with the Sermon on pages 287-92 and the Lord’s Prayer on 292-4.