How To Find FREE Bible Commentaries
If you are a commentary lover like me, you love to collect and read good commentaries. However, if you are like me, the one thing that consistently drives you away from commentaries is the price. Some of the commentaries out there are fairly affordable (such as Warren Wiersbe's "Be" Commentary Series). Other, often higher quality, commentaries can cost a pretty penny (such as the New International Commentary Series or the Word Biblical Commentary). Fortunately for us, there are some places that offer commentaries for free, with no strings attached. In this post, I want to show you where to find some of these FREE commentaries, as well as where to find some cheaper commentaries to make use of.
1. Logos Bible Software
For those of you who do not know, Logos Bible Software gives away a free book each month. In fact, they give not only one free book each month, but three. They also give away a book through Faithlife, their parent company, as well as Verbum, which is their Catholic branding. Occasionally the free book will be a commentary. Now, if you are discouraged by the "occasionally," don't be. They also offer great deals on other books each month, which often include commentaries. Beyond this, you can also get a FREE base package from Logos, which includes approximately 40 books, including a couple of basic commentaries. If you are willing to spend a few dollars to get a good commentary at a discount, Logos is offering a 50% discount on their top commentaries through the month of July. This may be useful if you are a pastor who wants to gather a few commentaries here and there to help with sermon preparation or something similar. If you want to purchase some commentaries along with other books, Logos has some Legacy Libraries available at a 30% discount for the month of July, as well. These include commentaries bundled with other resources and geared toward your specific tradition (such as Reformed or Wesleyan). If you find one that you like, but can't afford it up front, they also have payment plans available. As someone who uses the Logos 9 Methodist And Wesleyan Gold Package on a regular basis for both this blog and for Seminary, I can attest to how helpful these resources are. However, there are other options if you are still looking for some more FREE commentaries.
2. Wesleyan-Holiness Digital Library
The Wesleyan-Holiness Digital Library is a digital library containing books and reference works from a Wesleyan-Holiness perspective. It was designed to ensure that pastors in the Church of the Nazarene had access to free resources to help their ministry. The Wesleyan-Holiness Digital Library contains many useful resources, including a set of commentaries called the Beacon Bible Expositions. These, along with the Beacon Bible Commentary Set, are the forerunners to the New Beacon Bible Commentary Series. While the Beacon Bible Exposition set is based on the KJV text, its contents are valuable, insightful, and relevant for modern readers.
3. Christian Classics Ethereal Library
The Christian Classics Ethereal Library is a project that brings classic Christian literature to the average person at no cost. Included among their literature are several commentaries. While many of these commentaries come from Church fathers and other significant people throughout the history of the Church, such as John Calvin, Saint Augustine, and John Wesley, they have a wide range of commentaries that are now in the public domain. Most of these are available in a PDF and/or EPUB format, so that they can be downloaded and read on almost any device. In addition to commentaries, they have a wide range of other classic Christian literature that is worth checking.
4. BibleGateway and BibleStudyTools
BibleGateway has a small collection of free commentaries and other resources available to everyone for free. Included in this collection of commentaries are some significant works that would otherwise cost more than a few dollars to pick up, such as some volumes from the NIV Application Commentary. Their basic set of commentaries and other resources are free to use. However, they do have an option to upgrade and gain access to a ton of additional resources for only $3.99 per month. This will get you access to enough commentaries for a pastor to prepare a sermon or a Sunday School teacher to prepare a lesson.
BibleStudyTools, a site much like Bible Gateway, also has some free resources available for those who want to use them. As far as commentaries go, they have John Gill's Exposition of the Bible and Matthew Henry's Commentary, both the complete and concise editions. These two works are great for devotional study. However, like BibleGateway, they also have a premium plan. This plan is a little pricey, starting at $7.99 per month for access to all of their commentary resources. I personally prefer the BibleGateway plan, but BibleStudyTools may be the right fit for someone reading this.
5. Christian Book Distributors
Christian Book Distributors has free Christian ebooks. On some occasions, they will have an ebook edition of a commentary for free. While most of their free resources are not commentaries, I have seen, for example, one of Warren Wiersbe's commentaries available for free in the past. With Christian Book Distributors, timing is everything. You can also often find commentaries at a steep discount through CBD's Slightly Imperfect Sale. The resources that are part of this sale usually have minor defects, like a slightly bent page or a missing dust jacket. Overall, this is a good place to find good Christian books for free.
Which of these resources are your favorite? Let me know with a comment!