Author Archives: Jim

Contra the Pentebabbleists and their ‘Private Revelations’

John Owen fells them with one tiny sentence:

Via Randy Blackateer.

Not Every Leader is Worthy of Being Followed…

There are, let’s be honest, a lot of creeps and jerks in the ministry.  The author of Hebrews knows that.  He also knows that most people in ministry are decent servants of God who love the Church and its members.  Of that sort, Hebrews declares

Obey your leaders and give way to them; they watch over your souls because they must give an account of them; make this a joy for them to do, and not a grief — you yourselves would be the losers (Heb. 13:17)

I’m thinking of this passage today because yet another friend of mine, a long time Pastor, has left the Church and left the ministry.  And we talked about why.  Here’s what he told me:

I left the pastorate because just one jerk made ministry so miserable and the pastorate so awful that it finally came down to a very simple choice for me: I could stay in ministry and have a stroke (my Doctor warned me that it was on the way) or I could leave the ministry and live longer.  I chose the latter, not for myself but for my family.

We had a long talk about the circumstances of his choice and I think that everyone in ministry knows what he means.  And everyone in ministry understands his choice.  The tragic thing is that, as he told me, his Church didn’t understand it.  Instead of supporting him by shutting down the ‘jerk’ they stood silently by and said things like ‘everyone knows what he’s like’; dismissing the Pastor’s dread of constant and unending attack for the sake of ‘the peace of the Church’.

As we hung up the phone he said ‘I think the Church will have peace now that I’m gone.  Until they call another Pastor.  And then it will start all over again sooner or later for the new Pastor.’

I’m sure he’s right.

Quote of the Day

“I know no better tonic for me than anger. If I wish to write, pray, or preach well, then I need to become angry; thus all my being is refreshed, my wits are sharpened, and all temptations flee.” — Martin Luther

My Present Mood Is…

John Foxe Wasn’t Just a Bad Historian*…

He was also an exorcist!

*- Few books have been written in a more biased, historically inaccurate, way than Foxes Book of Martyrs.  It is to historical compositions what Strong’s Concordance is to the accurate representation of the biblical languages.

What is Natural Theology

When Beset By Despair…

But when we see ourselves beset by so many perils, so many injuries, so many kinds of enemies, such is our frailty and effeminacy, that we might at times be filled with alarm, or driven to despair, did not the Lord proclaim his gracious presence by some means in accordance with our feeble capacities. For this reason, he not only promises to take care of us, but assures us that he has numberless attendants, to whom he has committed the charge of our safety, that whatever dangers may impend, so long as we are encircled by their protection and guardianship, we are placed beyond all hazard of evil. – Calvin

Total Depravity: The Thieving Pastor Edition

Here’s the sad story.

George Brooke’s Lecture in Groningen Will Be Live Streamed

Dear Colleagues,

We invite you all to join us this Thursday, 26 April, from 16.15-18.00, at the University of Groningen, Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies (Oude Boteringestraat 38), room 130 (NOT room 253), for the Dirk Smilde Research Seminar.

Professor George Brooke will present on “Comparing Texts and their Interpretations,” his fourth in a series of lectures on “Comparative Studies with Special Reference to the Dead Sea Scrolls,” the lecture originally scheduled for 5 April.

If you are unable to join us in person, please join us virtually by watching the live stream of Professor Brooke’s lecture at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies Facebook page:

We look forward to seeing you all then!

Best wishes,

No, The World Isn’t Ending on April 23rd… David Meade is a Charlatan

No, there isn’t a giant planet heading this way.  And no, there is no such thing as a ‘Christian numerologist’.

The end of the world is going to kick off on April 23 – but it’s not going to be a nuclear conflagration set off by events in Syria.

Instead, a mysterious ‘death planet’ will appear in the sky, setting off volcanic eruptions, tsunamis and earthquakes – and it’s all predicted in the Bible.

Or at least that’s what Christian numerologist David Meade claims, in an interview with the Daily Express.

Meade, we should point out, has form, as he previously predicted that the death planet Nibiru would appear to kill us all late last year.

This time, he claims that an alignment of stars represents ‘he Lion of the tribe of Judah’ – meaning that the Rapture, when Christ returns to bring the faithful to paradise, is at hand.

David Meade is a charlatan.  Period.

Conférence de Thomas Römer – Mercredi 25 avril

If you’re in Jerusalem

La semaine prochaine, Mercredi 25 avril, l’École biblique et archéologique aura l’honneur de recevoir Thomas Römer, pour une conférence intitulée « The Biblical Traditions about the Ark of the Covenant », dans le cadre des Lagrange Lectures. 18h00, en Salle de Conférence. Thomas Römer est professeur au Collège de France, titulaire de la chaire « Milieux bibliques ». Exégète, philologue et bibliste, il est associé étranger de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. La conférence sera donnée en anglais.

Book Announcement – Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition

The Reader’s Edition of the LXX. Finally.

Septuaginta &c.

I have been keeping a secret. Now it’s out.

For the last several years, I have been working alongside Gregory R. Lanier (RTS Orlando) to produce a “reader’s edition” of the entire Septuagint. And finally, it’s (almost) finished.

It’s been listed on ChristianBook and will be available in November.

You are probably familiar with the idea of a reader’s edition, which over the past ten years or so has grown in popularity. Although there are others on the market, I think the reader’s edition of the Hebrew Bible and of the New Testament by Hendrickson Publishers are the best out there in terms of quality and readability. That is a big reason that we went with Hendrickson ourselves (although there are others) and I dare say they are doing a great job.

The basic idea behind a reader’s edition is to provide an edition of the ancient text – in…

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Was Luther Dragged off to Hell, Or Was He God’s Chosen Vessel?

This volume sets two Luther biographies, written by his contemporaries, side by side.  One is by Melanchthon.  And it’s free.

This volume brings together two important contemporary accounts of the life of Martin Luther in a confrontation that had been postponed for more than 450 years. The first of these accounts was written after Luther’s death, when it was rumoured that demons had seized the reformer on his deathbed and dragged him off to Hell. In response to these rumours, Luther’s friend and colleague, Philip Melanchthon, wrote and published a brief encomium of the reformer in 1548. A completely new translation of this text appears in this book. It was in response to Melanchthon’s work that Johannes Cochlaeus completed and published his own monumental life of Luther in 1549, which is translated and made available in English for the first time in this volume.

A Truckload of Books, Free, For Download

OAPEN is a site offering a lot of books of every description free for the downloading.  Search what you’re looking for and you may be happily surprised to find it.

The OAPEN Library contains freely accessible academic books, mainly in the area of humanities and social sciences. OAPEN works with publishers to build a quality controlled collection of open access books, and provides services for publishers, libraries and research funders in the areas of deposit, quality assurance, dissemination, and digital preservation.

On this #WorldBookDay it’s sure to be a useful thing.  With special thanks to my best Newman U. friend, Richard Goode for pointing it out.  I’m adding it to the useful sites section of the nav panel.

What I’m Reading on #WorldBookDay

Books That Matter, on #WorldBookDay

Then I saw a great white throne and the One who was sitting on it. In his presence, earth and sky vanished, leaving no trace.  I saw the dead, great and small alike, standing in front of his throne while the books lay open. And another book was opened, which is the book of life, and the dead were judged from what was written in the books, as their deeds deserved. (Rev. 20:11-12)

Writing Books… On #WorldBookDay

You must realise that writing books involves endless hard work, and that much study wearies the body.– (Eccl. 12:12)

Boy that’s the truth.


Today!  Read a book.

Moltmann Always Has Been Confused…

As evidenced by his grammar…

‘The Septuagint within the History of Greek’ seminar – 20 April 2018

Give it a read.

Interaction of Traditions

Septuagint-CambridgeA one-day research seminar on the Septuagint within the history of Greek, held on the 20th of April 2018 at the Faculty of Divinity of the University of Cambridge, hosted a group of 20 participants from both the field of Septuagint studies and Classics. The aim of the seminar was to strengthen the link between the scholars and their research projects as well as to point out the importance of the place of the Septuagint Greek within the history of the Greek language.

First and the longest paper was entitled: ‘The Grammarian Cannot Wait: Thackeray, Muraoka, and the Analysis of Septuagint Syntax’ was given by Trevor Evans from Macquarie University. The title itself was inspired by words from the famous Thackeray’s Grammar. Trevor made a fine analysis of a number of new approaches and methodological issues in Takamitsu Muraoka’s approach to the Septuagint Syntax. It is important to say…

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