My basic principle in preparing this translation has been to express the meaning of the original text in clear and idiomatic English. Technical terminology of biblical scholarship has been translated by the equivalent scholarly terms in English, rather than using a literal translation of the German.
The author, in the German edition, gave in full the sources of citations and quotations in the text itself, rather than in notes. Since this would result in a certain overburdening of the English translation, they are identified in this translation by only the name of the author, the date of publication of the work, and, where appropriate, by the page or pages to which reference is made. Fuller bibliographical data may be found at the end of the volume, where the works cited are listed by date under the name of the author in alphabetical order.
While the publisher has agreed to retain the Hebrew, Greek, and Latin words found in the German edition, these have also been transliterated or translated, as seemed appropriate, in the text, in order to make this work accessible to a larger circle of readers.
Almost all quotations from the Old Testament, the Deuterocanonical books, and the New Testament have been taken from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright 1946, 1952, and 1971 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches. There are occasional quotations from the King James Version and the Jerusalem Bible, where they reflect the author’s intentions more clearly than does the RSV. The spelling of all names of persons and places follows the usage of the RSV.
The abbreviation “Comm.” in this volume refers to Psalms 1–59 and Psalms 60–150, translated from the Biblischer Kommentar series and available from Fortress Press.
Throughout the preparation of this translation for publication the editors in Minneapolis have been faithful colleagues. Their professional competence and scholarly insights have been of inestimable help and serve as examples of the fellowship of those who love the Word and seek to make it known.