Zwinglius Redivivus

“Der glaubende Christ ist der denkende Theologe.” – Hans Hübner

Archive for the ‘Bible’ Category

Indeed, James, Indeed

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Every time I read James I remember what a prat Luther could be.  Anyone who thinks this Letter insubstantial is theologically blind.

Woher kommen denn die heftigen Auseinandersetzungen unter euch, woher die Machtkämpfe? Doch von den Begierden, die in euren Gliedern zum Krieg rüsten!  Ihr begehrt und habt doch nicht, ihr geht über Leichen und giert und könnt doch nicht erlangen, ihr kämpft und führt heftige Auseinandersetzungen. Ihr habt nichts, weil ihr nicht bittet.  Bittet ihr aber, so empfangt ihr nichts, weil ihr verkehrt bittet: Ihr bittet, um euren Begierden Befriedigung zu verschaffen.  Ihr Treulosen, wisst ihr nicht, dass Freundschaft mit der Welt Feindschaft gegen Gott ist? Wer der Welt Freund sein will, macht sich zum Feind Gottes. (Jam 4:1-4 ZUR)

That’s pure gold right there.

Written by Jim

September 2, 2014 at 07:53

Posted in Bible

The History of The Reception of Biblical Texts

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Written by Jim

August 26, 2014 at 15:25

Read the UBS 5 Greek Text Free Online, And NA 28, And BHS, And…

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From the German Bible Society-

Das Greek New Testament in der 5. Auflage (‪#‎UBS5‬) ist online: .


And here’s NA 28.


And if you visit either of those pages on the left nav panel you’ll see that you also can select any of the critical texts that are presently available save BHQ.


Written by Jim

August 21, 2014 at 09:58

In Which Mark Stevens Shares Some Thoughts On My Little Commentary…

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Jim West is a despicable person and a below average pastor…but…his commentary series is well worth investing in if you’re a pastor or lay-preacher…oh heck even if you’re a Christian! $200 for a commentary on the entire Bible and some of those other books the likes of Joel L. Watts and Jeremy Thompson endorse. See:

Um, thanks, Mark…   ;-)

[Mark is Australian... or Kiwi... or something... so there's that].

Written by Jim

August 21, 2014 at 07:39

Sheila McGinn: She’s A Scholar You Should Know if you Don’t Already, And You Should

9781451465501bShe’s brilliant.  And she has a new edited volume out that will surely be of interest to students of the New Testament.

Important ecclesiastical documents have stressed the urgency of addressing world hunger and put in the foreground its natural and historical causes, from famine to global austerity measures and welfare. Here biblical scholars examine passages from the Old and New Testaments, exploring the dynamics of hunger and its causation in ancient Israel and the Greco-Roman world and revealing the centrality of hunger concerns to the Bible.

Written by Jim

August 18, 2014 at 19:15

Continuity and Discontinuity: Chronological and Thematic Development in Isaiah 40-66

978-3-525-53614-8This volume of collected essays focuses on the relationship between the different texts within Isaiah 40–66. It reinvestigates and challenges the traditional division between chapters 40–55 and 56–66 and explores new ways of reading the last 27 chapters of the book of Isaiah. Each article examines Isaiah 40–55 and/or Isaiah 56–66 and highlights continuity and discontinuity within this material.

Some contributions belong to the tradition of historical-critical research. They examine existing models of textual development of Isa 40–66 and offer new suggestions. They also explore the interplay between the historical development of the text and its thematic continuity and discontinuity. Is the consistent use of a theme a sign of single authorship? Alternatively, are changes in the way a given issue is treated a sign of multiple authorship? Other contributions explore the final form of Isa 40–66 and suggest reading strategies that do justice to the message of the extant text. Yet other articles make case studies of specific elements of Isa 40–66. What is the significance of these texts for the theological development of the ancient Israelite religion? Further, how do they interact with and transform other texts in the Hebrew Bible?

The volume is comprised of the following:




If the present work demonstrates anything, it is that we have come a very long way from the early days of the historical-critical method as practiced on the book of Isaiah.  Along with the introductory essay, that by Barstad is particularly insightful and full of helpful guidance on the subject.   He discusses the general view of scholars concerning the book, then discusses why a new reading is necessary which is followed and illustrated by a series of test cases including Isaiah 56:1-8, 59, and 56:3-12.   His conclusion is that we can no longer

… keep up artificial scholarly units (p. 61)

like Proto, Deutero, and Trito Isaiah.  He continues, suggesting that, as he sees it,

… the by far most important message in Isaiah 56-66 is promotion and upgrading of the Sabbath in the Jerusalem congregation (p. 61).

Each of the essays in the volume is like that.  That is, they address common presumptions concerning various aspects of Isaiah 40-66 and then either debunk them or turn the focus towards another aspect (or facet) of the 2nd and 3rd Isaiah.

While each contribution has merits of its own, the outstanding pieces, for this reviewer, were those of Barstad, Blenkinsopp, Schaper, Schmid, and Williamson.  Schmid’s is the most technically demanding and Blenkinsopp’s the most engaging in presentation.  The volume itself sprang from a conference of the same title held at the University of Aberdeen October 7-8 in 2011.  If interested persons are looking for further descriptions of the essays herein, they can simply go to the link above and there they will discover the Table of Contents along with the Foreword, where each essay is summarized by the volume’s editors and nearly half of the first essay on the History of Research.

This volume will be of interest to students of the Hebrew Bible and in particular those working specifically on the second and third segments of the Isaianic corpus.  I can recommend it without hesitation.  Readers will learn a good bit, and enjoy themselves while doing so.

[Those wanting to can get it from V&R or in North America from ISD].

Written by Jim

August 18, 2014 at 14:02

Short Stories By Jesus: The Enigmatic Parables of a Controversial Rabbi

I appreciate Amy-Jill arranging for a copy from HarperCollins of her new book.

9780061561016The renowned biblical scholar, author of The Misunderstood Jew, and general editor for The Jewish Annotated New Testament interweaves history and spiritual analysis to explore Jesus’ most popular teaching parables, exposing their misinterpretations and making them lively and relevant for modern readers.

Jesus was a skilled storyteller and perceptive teacher who used parables from everyday life to effectively convey his message and meaning. Life in first-century Palestine was very different from our world today, and many traditional interpretations of Jesus’ stories ignore this disparity and have often allowed anti-Semitism and misogyny to color their perspectives.

In this wise, entertaining, and educational book, Amy-Jill Levine offers a fresh, timely reinterpretation of Jesus’ narratives. In Short Stories by Jesus, she analyzes these “problems with parables,” taking readers back in time to understand how their original Jewish audience understood them. Levine reveals the parables’ connections to first-century economic and agricultural life, social customs and morality, Jewish scriptures and Roman culture. With this revitalized understanding, she interprets these moving stories for the contemporary reader, showing how the parables are not just about Jesus, but are also about us—and when read rightly, still challenge and provoke us two thousand years later.

This is going to be a treat.  My review will follow in the not too distant future here.

Written by Jim

August 18, 2014 at 10:27


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