The Evangelical Christian Publishers Association has awarded a Medallion of Excellence in Bible Reference to Karen Jobes for her commentary on 1, 2, and 3 John, published by Zondervan.
Congratulations, Dr. Jobes!
Dr. Jobes is a dear friend and mentor, a member of my dissertation committee, and a great scholar. This award coincides with her retirement from Wheaton College, where she has been teaching as the Gerald F. Hawthorne Professor of New Testament Greek and Exegesis for 10 years. She has also taught at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia and Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California (10 years), and she's served for many years as a member of the Committee on Bible Translation for the NIV.
Next Spring the Pacific Northwest Region of the Evangelical Theological Society will have the honor of hosting Dr. Jobes as our plenary speaker. I'm looking forward to it already.
In addition to outlining the overall structure of John's letters and analyzing the Greek text, one of the strengths of Dr. Jobes' commentary is the section in each chapter devoted to Theology in Application. Here's an excerpt from the section following 1 John 4:7–16 on the question "Is God Loving?"
"People can experience many horrible things in life, leading both Christians and unbelievers to question God's love. How could a loving God let such horrible things happen as we see continually in the daily news? Without diminishing the reality of pain and suffering, John's answer would be that God has already loved each of us to the fullest extent by providing that crossover from death to life. For death is the worst this life can bring against us, but when this life has been swallowed up by eternal life, even the worst is not our defeat. Because God's fullest love has already been given in Christ more than two thousand years ago, it is not based on what we do or what others do to us. What greater gift of love could God give than freedom from death?"
"When someone has experienced freedom from sin and freedom from death, they are able to love God and others as God intended. This is because love will not allow us to sin against others, for love is the opposite of sin. And when sinned against, we are enabled to forgive others because our Lord Jesus has atoned for that sin. We can reveal God's forgiveness and love to the offender through our forgiveness." (200, emphasis mine)