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Category: Old Testament

  • Clinton E. Arnold — 

    A few years ago, the National Geographic Society announced the discovery of a lost gospel called the Gospel of Judas. Every major news outlet covered this event, with some hailing it as the discovery of the century. The Society then aired a television special on the Friday before Easter telling the story of this great find and discussing its significance. This discovery raised many questions for people, but especially two of a critical nature for the Christian faith: (1) why were some books left out of the Bible (like the Gospel of Judas), and (2) should we consider including other books in the Bible? ...

  • Karin Stetina — 

    This past fall a friend shared an article from the New York Times entitled The Microcomplaint: Nothing Too Small to Complain About. It was amusing to read about all the silly complaints that celebrities tweeted to the world. Everything from the misery of only decaf coffee being available to what the writer deemed a “complaintbrag” of not being able to buy a Persian rug with cherub imagery. This habit, however, does not appear to be limited to celebrities. Cruise ship directors have received equally amusing complaints. For example, one passenger reported that the sea was “too loud” while another passenger grumbled about there being no celebrities on the Celebrity Cruise ship. In the past complaining was something often reserved for private ears. Today, however, it is not only acceptable to publically complain about the littlest inconvenience, it is often encouraged. It has even been identified as a communication style, particularly of Americans, who frequently see themselves as victims. Are Christians exempt from “microcomplaining” or are we part of the “culture of complaint”? What does Scripture have to say about complaining? ...

  • Charlie Trimm — 

    Most agree that knowledge about the Bible in the United States is very low today (our own Ken Berding’s helpful Bible Fluency Program seeks to rectify this). What little Bible knowledge is present usually is focused on the New Testament, leaving the Old Testament as a scary foreign land that few visit. However, this was not always the case. A recent book by Eran Shalev, American Zion: The Old Testament as a Political Text from the Revolution to the Civil War, gives us a glimpse of a somewhat different world as he shows how important the Old Testament was in political discussions in the United States before the Civil War ...

  • Mark Saucy — 

    This week’s conference, “Israel and the Church: A Troubled Past and Glorious Future,” hosted by Biola and Chosen People Ministries, provided yet another opportunity for me to think “big picture.” As most of us, I suppose, the cares of daily tasks—emails, news cycles, family, work-ministry, church-ministry—I can get so buried in the daily that I lose the plan! By plan I mean the narrative that God has written for the world. A narrative that first rescues a fallen creation and then restores it to the flourishing fullness God made it for ...

  • David Talley — 

    When was the last time you considered the mentally ill or, even much less, ministry to the mentally ill? I have been remembering a good friend. He was my best friend during my freshman year in college. Our rooms were in the same suite in our dorm. We shared a bathroom. We took the same classes. We sat next to one another in chapel because my last name followed his alphabetically. We were on the basketball team. As point guard, I fed him the ball, and, as shooting guard, he made the shot. What a team we were! He introduced me to my wife. We double-dated numerous times. He was the best man in my wedding. We vacationed together as families through the years. We saw one another on at least a yearly basis, our friendship always picking up like we had just seen one another the week before. We shared something special ...

  • David Talley — 

    ... Grace is a concept that we have fully received, but one that we will never fully comprehend. Throughout all of eternity we will be “grow(ing) in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18). Our worship and praise of the One who has bestowed grace on us will only increase, ever and always … there will be no end of our awe ...

  • Mark Saucy — 

    While I’m not usually too much into “merchandising in the Temple,” I must here. That’s because the book at issue in this modest review is a grabber. Not only does it concern a topic most pressing in our ever secularizing world—and therefore one Evangelicals must get good at talking about—it’s a topic that touches every one of us in everything we do ...

  • Kenneth Berding — 

    This morning I was reading in Hosea 9:7-15 during my Bible reading time and was reminded once again why it is so important to be reading and learning the Bible. In those nine short verses are five allusions to places/events/things that someone who reads the Bible a lot should be able to recognize. Test your Bible knowledge and see if you know what Hosea is alluding to in each of these five cases ...

  • Daniel Kim — 

    ... The well-known words suitable helper in Gen. 2:18 are so engrained in our English speaking culture that it’s difficult to think of Gen. 2:18 in any other terms, even though many translations have tried to adopt better wording to fit the original Hebrew (c.f., ESV, NLT, or the footnote in the NASB). These words come in the midst of the sentence, “I will make him a helper suitable for him” (NASB). Suitable helper might have been a suitable translation 50 years ago, but I suggest that the phrase suitable helper has become outdated and is now misleading in its translation ...

  • Kenneth Berding — 

    Classical Christian education programs are on the rise. I am heartened that so many parents want their children to get a strong education that draws upon all that is wonderful, winsome, and wise from the past. But Latin instead of Greek? Are you serious? Come on, teachers and parents. Feel free to add Latin later if you’re so inclined, but really you should start with Greek. Here are eight (well … sort-of eight) reasons why Greek ought to be the core language you teach in your Classical Christian education program instead of Latin ...

  • Daniel Kim — 

    When speaking to seminary graduates from all across the U.S., I’ve been noticing an increasing discomfort in students regarding their ability to preach and teach effectively from the Old Testament. Part of this is because the Old Testament comprises so much of the Bible, and there just isn’t enough space in a degree program to adequately cover all of the Old Testament (especially a degree that doesn’t concentrate solely on the Old Testament). The Old Testament is packed with a wide variety of genres and covers such an expansive amount of history ...

  • Mark Saucy — 

    You know that part of your Bible where the gold leaf on the pages still looks pretty fresh? Some of the pages might still even be stuck together. Or, more au courant, the portion you rarely scroll to on your phone or iPad … That’s right, for most of us it’s that part of the Bible starting right after Psalms and going all the way to Matthew. A lot of prophets big and little, and a good bit of Israel’s Wisdom tradition—but it just doesn’t get a lot of air-time in most evangelical churches or personal Bible-reading. Now, I’m the first to admit that last claim stems from my own highly subjective internal polling data, and I’m glad to be proven wrong; but I don’t think I am, because I know a good bit of it’s true in my own life ...

  • William Lane Craig — 

    Dear Dr. William Lane Craig, I would like to first off thank you for all the work and encouragement you brought to me when I was a Christian. It's only been about two days since I openly claimed to be agnostic and I guess it's weak and fresh enough to be torn away, but Dr. Craig, something destroyed my faith. As a former Christian who loved science, I made it my goal to show that Christians were not scientifically illiterate, so I began reading books by Stephen Hawking and Carl Sagan, then I ventured into evolutionary biology. I knew about Richard Dawkins and how anti-theist his views were, but I assumed that as long as he was writing biology it wouldn't do any harm. In a very slow and progressive way, I began to simply accept Darwin's Theory of Evolution and Human Evolution. But then I realized a HUGE problem with Human Evolution and Christian theism ...

  • Charlie Trimm — 

    Charlie Trimm, Assistant Professor of Biblical and Theological Studies, released a book last year on the exodus and God as a warrior. Following is an interview with the author ...

  • Tom Finley — 

    Here is a challenging essay, written long ago by several Talbot professors, about the importance of reading the Old Testament in the original language. Two of the authors are retired (one to glory). The third, Dr. Tom Finley, is still with us. Some things never change — like the significance of Hebrew for sound OT exegesis. Some things, however, do change. Please note that the article was written for the Talbot Bulletin in the fall of 1979, before sensitivity to issues of culture and gender became part of the literary landscape. Caveat lector ...

  • Kenneth Way — 

    One of the ways to interpret the idyllic story of Ruth is to read it as a wisdom text—an illustration of God’s order in the lives of his faithful people. There are a number of good reasons to read Ruth in this way ...

  • Doug Geivett — 

    “Prince of peace” is biblical language. In other words, it derives from its use in the Bible as a descriptive title with a very specific context. The title “Prince of Peace” is used of the Messiah in Isaiah 9:6. It is, therefore—according to Christian orthodoxy—a reference to Jesus Christ. This is an extraordinarily honorific title. It denotes the full realization of messianic hope. In the Christian Scriptures it alludes to human reconciliation with God, and only by extension to the realization of peace within the human community. The agent, of course, is the Prince of Peace ...

  • Gary Manning Jr — 

    It is commonly claimed that when Jesus used the phrase “I am” (ἐγώ εἰμι, ego eimi), he was making a direct reference to the name of God in the Old Testament, YHWH. There is some truth to this, but I want to suggest three important caveats to this claim: “I am” (ἐγώ εἰμι), by itself, is not a code for the name of God; “I am” is only intended to refer to deity in some of Jesus’ sayings; Paying too much attention to the “I am” part of the sentence distracts readers from paying attention to the rest of the sentence.

  • Kenneth Berding — 

    One of the keys to understanding the New Testament (NT) use of the Old Testament (OT) may be the recognition that when a NT author draws upon an idea found in a particular OT passage, it does not have to be the main idea of that passage to be usable. The contemporary assumption (often not articulated) that it has to be the main idea of an OT text to be legitimate seems to be a key stumbling block for people studying the NT use of the OT. The tendency for people to focus only on the main idea of a text (rather than also upon sub-themes) may also explain my present discomfort with the sense / referent distinction made by various authors.[1] The sense / referent distinction seems to assume a single sense for a verse that is akin to an exegetical idea of that verse.

  • Tom Finley — 

    Amos has much to say about oppression and the plight of the poor in Israel, so it is only natural that his book has become a focal point for discussions about social justice.[1] At least three aspects of the issue dealt with by Amos concern the nature of God, the role of the individual, and the role of the social system ...

  • Kenneth Berding — 

    This weekend I had the privilege of reading Constantine Campbell’s brand new book, Advances in the Study of Greek: New Insights for Reading the New Testament. I had fun reading this book. It’s possible that this says more about me than it does about the book(!), but I must honestly acknowledge that for me it was a truly enjoyable experience to read this new volume. Advances in the Study of Greek is a good way for people who already have some training in Greek to get up-to-speed on inside discussions happening between Greek Geeks…that is, umm, Greek linguists and grammarians. Here is a short run-down on its contents ...

  • Kenneth Way — 

    The Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the California Science Center offers a historic opportunity to see artifacts and manuscripts from what is arguably the most significant archaeological discovery of the twentieth century. The Dead Sea Scrolls are precious to Jews and Christians of all backgrounds because of what they contribute to our understanding of textual criticism of the Hebrew Bible, the beliefs and practices of ancient Judaism and the cultural background of the New Testament.

  • Charlie Trimm — 

    The study of how to interpret biblical laws and apply them to our lives today (the text we study in class is the command in Deuteronomy 22:8 to build a parapet around your roof!) results in many opportunities to talk about issues related to spiritual formation, including such areas as celebrating the Sabbath, helping the poor, and identifying legalism. One interesting area we examine is how to honor our parents.

  • William Lane Craig — 

    Dear Dr Craig, I was born in Turkey and simply followed the traditions and became a Muslim. I have always been hungry for knowledge and understanding. So I started to research Islam with the hope that I could have a closer/stronger connection with God. But unfortunately I realized that the Prophet Mohammed stands between God and me. This was my first disappointment. I also found out certain things that put me off so much from Islam, and in fact, from all the other religions. I then became and atheist because I believed it was intellectual, logical and rational. After I studied Mathematical Physics (and understood the true meaning of science, rationality and logic) at university, I realized that atheism was not for me either. My question is about Jesus. I am not a Christian but feeling very close to Jesus since the first day I came to know him. I don't understand him dying for our sins. What does that mean? No Christian has given me a satisfactory answer and I can't think of an answer myself. I am ready to die, today, for my mother but that's not what Jesus did (I assume?). What does it mean to "die for someone else's sins"? ...

  • David Talley — 

    Discovery House recently published a new Bible Atlas that is worth your time to review. I thought you might find it helpful to become better acquainted with the author, Jack Beck, so I asked him the following questions.