In his book Ruckman’s Bible References, Peter Ruckman presents the following assumption about the supposed inability of others to understand or interpret Zechariah 3:2:
The passage lies uncommented on by the faculty and staff of every major, “recognized” Christian college and seminary in America. It deals with the power of Satan. … Why was this necessary? [The Lord rebuking Satan] Not one Hebrew scholar at your school, not one president of one faculty, not one “head” of any Bible department has had the “foggiest” for the last three hundred years. … Since you never met a Greek or Hebrew scholar (or a Bible reviser for that matter) who even understood these matters, it is no wonder that you never heard them discussed on tape, or in print. (p. 152)
Now let’s break it down:
1. Ruckman could not possibly know if this verse is indeed uncommented on in every major recognized Christian college and seminary classroom in America!
2. Since it is virtually impossible to verify if colleges and seminaries are ignoring Zech. 3:2 in the classroom, we checked well-known commentaries. Ruckman did not single out Bible commentators, but he alleged that “…you never heard them discussed on tape, or in print.” Commentaries are a very likely indicator as to whether a verse is being ignored by scholars in the classroom. The following older commentaries dealt with the passage in question: The Preacher’s Complete Homiletical Commentary, John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible, Matthew Henry’s Exposition of the Old and New Testaments, Lange’s Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Albert Barne’s Notes on the Bible, Adam Clarke’s Commentary on the Whole Bible, and likely many more that we did not check.
3. In his interpretation, Ruckman puts the focus on the Lord’s motives, and mocks others for not understanding motives that he only can understand. But how could Ruckman possibly know the Lord’s motives?
In the end, if you have access to his book, you can verify that Ruckman has nothing special to contribute to our knowledge of Zech. 3:2 except his guesswork surrounding the Lord’s motives which he introduces as “the ghastly truth…” Ruckman overestimates the importance of his own conjectures. Ruckman knows better than to say outright “don’t listen to anyone else, only listen to me.” But by essentially knocking everyone else down, Ruckman is subtlety telling his readers not to listen to anyone but him. Christian, beware!