Lectionary Calendar
Monday, July 15th, 2024
the Week of Proper 10 / Ordinary 15
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Bible Commentaries

Kelly Commentary on Books of the BibleKelly Commentary


Old Testament

New Testament

William Kelly
William Kelly

William Kelly (1821-1906) was a prominent figure in the Plymouth Brethren, a Christian movement that emerged in the early 19th century in the United Kingdom. Born in Millisle, County Down, Ireland, Kelly was not only a distinguished scholar and a prolific writer but also a significant biblical theologian and commentator within the movement. His intellect and depth of scriptural understanding contributed greatly to the development and dissemination of Plymouth Brethren theology.

Educated in classics and mathematics at Trinity College, Dublin, Kelly initially embarked on a career in law before experiencing a profound spiritual awakening. This pivotal moment led him to dedicate his life to the study and teaching of the Bible. Moving away from his legal pursuits, Kelly became an influential teacher and preacher, known for his rigorous analysis of biblical texts and a commitment to the principle of sola scriptura, the idea that the Bible is the supreme authority in all matters of faith and practice.

Kelly's contributions to Christian literature are vast. He authored numerous commentaries on books of the Bible, theological treatises, and articles for periodicals within the Plymouth Brethren community. His works are characterized by meticulous exegesis and a strong emphasis on the premillennial return of Christ, a central tenet of Brethren eschatology. Among his most renowned works are commentaries on the books of Daniel, Revelation, and Hebrews, which are still referenced for their insightful interpretations and scholarly depth.

Throughout his life, Kelly was a figure of both respect and controversy. His unwavering stance on doctrinal purity and ecclesiastical separation led to both admiration and criticism. Despite this, his intellectual legacy within the Plymouth Brethren and broader Christian community has endured. Kelly passed away in 1906, leaving behind a body of work that continues to influence Christian thought and eschatology. His life's dedication to understanding and elucidating the scriptures has made him a lasting figure in the study of biblical theology.

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