Daily Archives: 3 Jul 2017

When Authentic Christians Read NT Wright…

This is their reaction-

Happy 4th, And Remember…

Patriotism is great. Nationalism is idolatry.  #July4th

More Stinging by the Bee of Ridiculous Nationalism


In honor of the Fourth of July holiday, the Smithsonian’s American History Museum announced Monday it would be displaying the covenant God signed with America upon the founding of the nation in 1776.

The historical contract famously outlines the terms and conditions governing God’s choice of America as His covenant people.

“For the first time, the full covenant the Founding Fathers signed with the Lord on high will be available for public viewing, for a limited time only,” a curator told reporters. “It is our hope that the American public would gain a greater appreciation for the country’s solemn duty to advance the kingdom of God on earth, as the Lord commissioned us to do upon our nation’s founding.”

According to historical record, the contract was delivered to congressional representatives by a bald eagle just moments after the Declaration of Independence was approved by Congress in Philadelphia. Its miraculous appearance was accompanied by the sound of a chorus of angels singing Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless the U.S.A.,” according to witnesses present.

The contract will be viewable at the Smithsonian for the entire month of July.

Blog Resuscitation

A dead blog returns, zombie-esque, to life… for how long no one knows…

LXX Studies

My blogging has lay dormant for far too long. I have updated my About page and given a new look to the blog. I have also changed the tagline (Enquiring into the Biblical Text and Canon) to more adequately describe what I hope to comment.

Moving forward I plan to continue writing here but only intermittently as I am able to post thoughts and notes on current projects that I’m researching. I also hope to begin contributing to the Evangelical Textual Criticism blog on topics relevant to Old Testament textual criticism, which I will link to from here. Very soon look for posts on Epiphanius of Salamis’s views on the Septuagint (really the translation of the Seventy-Two according to him) vis-à-vis the Hebrew. Also, I have added a widget on the side bar to the right with a link to my new (first!) book on The Biblical Canon Lists from…

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The Bee Stings the Worship America Worship Service

“Truly inspired and deeply moved” by his church’s patriotic 4th of July service, and particularly his pastor’s message, titled “The Shining City Upon A Hill,” local man Jim Radcliffe announced Monday his intention to launch into a comprehensive study of every mention of the United States of America in the entire Bible.

“From God’s covenant with America in the Old Testament, all the way through to America’s ultimate victory over our enemies in Revelation—I’m going to study every single verse about God’s chosen nation,” read his announcement on Facebook. “There are a ton of them, I know. But I am committed.”

Radcliffe also announced that he hopes to complete this daunting task within one calendar year.

“By this time next year I hope to have exhaustively studied the Scriptures’ entire treatment of the United States, even if it takes several hours each day,” he said in his online missive, noting his confidence that God will bless him as he endeavors to honor the U.S., quoting Genesis 12:3, “I will bless those who bless [America].”

Questioned by a commenter about his biblical interpretations and the tumultuous state of the country as possible evidence that America is not God’s chosen nation, Radcliffe stood his ground. “Just like pastor explained, God has promised to save America out of this current state of unrest. See Isaiah 43.”

If your church service yesterday was comprised of flag waving and speeches urging nationalism, you should find yourself a new church to attend.  Now.

A Splendid Tool For Reformation Research

Is the Schweizerisches Idiotikon: Schweizerdeutsches Wörterbuch. Users can easily find obscure words and their definitions as used in Swiss literature from 1000 CE to the present. So, for instance, if you’re looking for a word Bullinger used in a 1552 sermon, fygend, and you can’t figure it out, just type it in the search field- and voila- there it is:

This is a fantastic tool.  Brilliantly useful.  And having it online is a boon to those of us in the hinterlands.

Das Schweizerische Idiotikon ist ein Institut zur Erforschung und Dokumentation der deutschen Sprache und ihrer Dialekte in der Schweiz. Seine Hauptaufgabe ist die Erarbeitung des Wörterbuchs der schweizer­deutschen Sprache (Schweizerisches Idiotikon) in gedruckter und digitaler Form. Dieses Werk beschreibt den alemannischen Wortschatz in der Schweiz vom Spätmittel­alter bis ins 21. Jahrhundert. Mit bisher 16 abgeschlos­senen Bänden, die zusammen über 150 000 Stichwörter enthalten, ist es das grösste Regional­wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache. Mehr…

Fun Facts from Church History: Calvin’s System of Sermonizing

calvin_preachTo give you some idea of the scope of the Calvin’s pulpit, he began his series on the book of Acts on August 25, 1549, and ended it in March of 1554. After Acts he went on to the epistles to the Thessalonians (46 sermons), Corinthians (186 sermons), pastorals (86 sermons), Galatians (43 sermons), Ephesians (48 sermons)–till May 1558. Then there is a gap when he is ill. In the spring of 1559 he began the Harmony of the Gospels and was not finished when he died in May, 1564. During the week of that season he preached 159 sermons on Job, 200 on Deuteronomy, 353 on Isaiah, 123 on Genesis and so on.

And here’s the most interesting snippet-

One of the clearest illustrations that this was a self-conscious choice on Calvin’s part was the fact that on Easter Day, 1538, after preaching, he left the pulpit of St. Peter’s, banished by the City Council. He returned in September, 1541–over three years later–and picked up the exposition in the next verse.*

That, my friends, is how you do it.
*From John Piper’s little book on Calvin.

Conference Announcement: Being Jewish, Writing Greek

Coming in September 6-8:

Being Jewish, Writing Greek is a conference at the University of Cambridge which aims to explore the literary aspects of Jewish texts in Greek in the Hellenistic and Imperial period (ca. 3rd century B.C.E. to 3rd C.E.). We believe that a focus on literary form, in addition to content, has the potential to better our understanding of the negotiations of culture and identity articulated in these texts.   http://www.beingjewish-writinggreek.co.uk/index.html

That Statue of Zwingli With the Sword and Bible

wasserkircheHere’s, as Paul Harvey used to say, the ‘rest of the story’.  A story the partisans of Luther need to know and hear.

The Zwingli festival [of 1884] was not merely an echo of the Luther festival, but was observed throughout the Reformed churches of Europe and America with genuine enthusiasm, and gave rise to an extensive Zwingli literature. It is in keeping with the generous Christian spirit which the Swiss Reformer showed towards the German Reformer at Marburg, that many Reformed churches in Switzerland, as well as elsewhere, heartily united in the preceding jubilee of Luther, forgetting the bitter controversies of the sixteenth century, and remembering gratefully his great services to the cause of truth and liberty.

In the following year (Aug. 25, 1885), a bronze statue was erected to Zwingli at Zürich in front of the Wasserkirche and City Library, beneath the minster where he preached. It represents the Reformer as a manly figure, looking trustfully up to heaven, with the Bible in one hand and the sword in the other,—a combination true to history.

Dr. Alexander Schweizer, one of the ablest Swiss divines (d. July 3, 1888), whose last public service was the Zwingli oration in the University, Jan. 7, 1884, protested against the sword, and left the committee on the monument. Dr. Konrad Ferdinand Meyer, the poet of the occasion, changed the sword of Zwingli, with poetic ingenuity, into the sword of Vokinger, by which he was slain.

paulAntistes Finsler, in his oration, gave the sword a double meaning, as in the case of Paul, who is likewise represented with the sword, namely, the sword by which he was slain, and the sword of the spirit with which he still is fighting; while at the same time it distinguishes Zwingli from Luther, and shows him as the patriot and statesman.

The sword he holds is the sword with which he was hacked to death by his Papist foes.  Finsler, who knew more about Zwingli than nearly anyone ever has, has it right.

NB- Photo above by me.