Academic students of a particular field who desire to become ‘scholars’ in order to publish regularly and/or teach at higher levels of education typically need to be awarded a doctoral degree. The award of a doctoral degree marks one’s acceptance into the community of scholars in that field. The etymology of the term doctor relates […]
Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it saved Israel. As he unwittingly proto-typed Jesus, the Good Shepherd, Moses was distracted by a curious phenomenon: “I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.” (Ex. 3:3) Read the rest of the story here. Why is the bush not burned? […]
Evil things happen in this world, and yet God is still somehow sovereign. This is perhaps the hardest part of Christian theology to accept and understand. How is God sovereign over the persecution of Christians around the world, over the acts of ISIS, over world hunger and poverty, or over smaller evils like my own depression, […]
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:28 If we imagine Paul writing this to the churches in America today, we might add: “Neither Republican, nor Democrat.” At a time when the […]
The Text that Started It All I received this text message from a friend: “Quick…need a translation/explanation of Luke 2:49.” I found the necessity of a hurried response to be a bit peculiar. Who would need a translation of a verse so promptly? Nevertheless, I supplied my quick, and rather ‘wooden’, translation from the Greek […]
Theology and language are inseparable. Theology is speech about God, and this speech is linguistic and therefore culturally defined. Languages, particularly those of civilizations with imperial and colonial histories, are the words of the most affluent and well-to-do. (This is why words like ‘suwanne’ and ‘purdy’ are not found in the OED). Words of conquered […]
Why is Abraham called a friend of God? Here are some ideas: Isaiah says it, and James says that “doing good” has something to do with it. (Isa. 41:8; Jas. 2:23) Augustine describes friendship as a “sharing of the counsels of the heart.” (Edward C. Sellner Like a Kindling Fire: Meanings of Friendship in the Life and […]
I mentioned in my last post (The Rule of the Community, the Prophet, and the Two Messiahs) that caution must be exercised in the use of Jewish sources for New Testament studies. This caution arose out of a tripartite evolution in New Testament scholarship which occurred mostly during the 20th century. These three phases I […]
Reading scripture has deadly implications. “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before […]
In the Qumran text Rule of the Community it states, “They shall be judged by the first judgements in which the men of the Community began to be instructed, until the coming of the prophet and the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel” (1QS 9.10–11).1 We have here “the locus classicus for Qumran messianism.”2 Although this […]
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