Category Archives: Bible

OK, Another Quote of the Day

‘You have heard how it was said, You will love your neighbour and hate your enemy.  But I say this to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you;  so that you may be children of your Father in heaven, for he causes his sun to rise on the bad as well as the good, and sends down rain to fall on the upright and the wicked alike.  For if you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Do not even the tax collectors do as much?   And if you save your greetings for your brothers, are you doing anything exceptional?  Do not even the gentiles do as much? You must therefore be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.’  (Matt. 5:43-48)

Call For Submissions

Yours truly will host the January Biblical Studies Carnival (posting 1 February).  I request, therefore, that you send along your submissions.  Either from your own blogs or from ones you’ve visited.

In the past, Carnivals have been ‘uneven’ or even perhaps ‘nearly non existent’.  But 2020 is a new year and will kick off with The Carnival to Beat All Carnivals.  Titled simply 2020: The Carnival, it will serve as the template for all the Carnivals to come this year:  Fully stocked, cleverly curated, and vividly presented.

Carnival attendees will not have to suffer entries that consist merely of a link and a two word descriptor.  Gone are the days of hum-druminess, dear friends.  Rejoice and be exceedingly glad!  And send in your submissions!

Quote of the Day

Seid barmherzig, wie euer Vater im Himmel barmherzig ist!« —  Lukas 6:36

I Guess It’s Time To Remind the ‘Christians’ Out There of Something Jesus Said

“Not everyone who says to Me,`Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.” (Matt. 7:21)

Allow me to simplify- just because you call yourself a Christian doesn’t mean you are.

Weighed and Discarded

“This is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN.  This is the interpretation of the message: MENE means that God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end. TEKEL means that you have been weighed in the balance and found deficient. PERES means that your kingdom has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” (Dan. 5:25-28)

Isaiah: Septuagint Commentary Series

This work consists of an introduction, transcription, translation, and commentary to the Greek translation of Isaiah in the Codex Sinaiticus. It comments on the Greek language in its context, especially on how the Greek language is stretched beyond its normal range of function. It addresses the peculiarities of Codex Sinaiticus, including its history, scribes, divisions, and orthography. In line with the aims of the Brill Septuagint Commentary Series, it mainly discusses not how the text was produced, but how it was read.

Congratulations to Ken Penner.

It Is God Who Is Owed Our Highest Allegiance

As we learn quite clearly in the story of the three Hebrew boys and Nebuchadnezzar-

King Nebuchadnezzar made a gold statue, 90 feet high and nine feet wide. He set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. King Nebuchadnezzar sent word to assemble the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates, and all the rulers of the provinces to attend the dedication of the statue King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. So the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates, and all the rulers of the provinces assembled for the dedication of the statue the king had set up. Then they stood before the statue Nebuchadnezzar had set up.  A herald loudly proclaimed, “People of every nation and language, you are commanded: When you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, drum, and every kind of music, you are to fall down and worship the gold statue that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. But whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a furnace of blazing fire.” 

Therefore, when all the people heard the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, and every kind of music, people of every nation and language fell down and worshiped the gold statue that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. 

Some Chaldeans took this occasion to come forward and maliciously accuse the Jews. They said to King Nebuchadnezzar, “May the king live forever. You as king have issued a decree that everyone who hears the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, drum, and every kind of music must fall down and worship the gold statue. Whoever does not fall down and worship will be thrown into a furnace of blazing fire. There are some Jews you have appointed to manage the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These men have ignored you, the king; they do not serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.” 

Then in a furious rage Nebuchadnezzar gave orders to bring in Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. So these men were brought before the king.  Nebuchadnezzar asked them, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, is it true that you don’t serve my gods or worship the gold statue I have set up?  Now if you’re ready, when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, drum, and every kind of music, fall down and worship the statue I made. But if you don’t worship it, you will immediately be thrown into a furnace of blazing fire– and who is the god who can rescue you from my power?” 

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied to the king, “Nebuchadnezzar, we don’t need to give you an answer to this question.  If the God we serve exists, then He can rescue us from the furnace of blazing fire, and He can rescue us from the power of you, the king.  But even if He does not rescue us, we want you as king to know that we will not serve your gods or worship the gold statue you set up.”

Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with rage, and the expression on his face changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He gave orders to heat the furnace seven times more than was customary,  and he commanded some of the strongest soldiers in his army to tie up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and throw them into the furnace of blazing fire.  So these men, in their trousers, robes, head coverings, and other clothes, were tied up and thrown into the furnace of blazing fire. Since the king’s command was so urgent and the furnace extremely hot, the raging flames killed those men who carried Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego up.  And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fell, bound, into the furnace of blazing fire.

Then King Nebuchadnezzar jumped up in alarm. He said to his advisers, “Didn’t we throw three men, bound, into the fire?” “Yes, of course, Your Majesty,” they replied to the king.  He exclaimed, “Look! I see four men, not tied, walking around in the fire unharmed; and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”  Nebuchadnezzar then approached the door of the furnace of blazing fire and called: “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, you servants of the Most High God– come out!” So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out of the fire.  When the satraps, prefects, governors, and the king’s advisers gathered around, they saw that the fire had no effect on the bodies of these men: not a hair of their heads was singed, their robes were unaffected, and there was no smell of fire on them. (Dan. 3:1-27)

You Need a Commentary That Helps Make Sense of the Bible

the-person-the-pew-commentary-seriesThe ‘Person in the Pew’ commentary series is the only series of Commentaries in modern history written by a single person on the entire Bible and aimed at layfolk .  Everyone needs a commentary on the Bible that they can understand and that answers their questions about the meaning of the text.  So I wrote one.

If you or someone you know wants to get a copy of the entire 42 volume collection in PDF format, you can do so from yours truly for the exceptionally reasonable cost of $75 by clicking my PayPal Link.  Leave your email in your paypal payment note so I can send it to you right away.

Should you only wish one volume, email me and we can arrange it.  And please remember, these files may not be shared or distributed.

***

The best commentaries.  – Kevin Wilkinson, Singapore

Quote of the Day

I could wish that those who trouble you would even cut themselves off! (Gal. 5:12)

The President Says it’s OK For Him To Lie to Us…

The Bible disagrees.  So while Mr Trump may think that his constant lies are unimportant, Scripture begs to differ (no, it doesn’t beg him or anyone for permission to disagree, or anything else when it comes to setting forth its notions of God, humanity, justice, sin, etc.) as it asserts that ‘liars go to hell’ (Rev 21:8).

He may lie.  But hell is his final destination for so doing.

Jeremiah’s Most Profound Confession

You deceived me, LORD, and I was deceived. You seized me and prevailed. I am a laughingstock all the time; everyone ridicules me.  For whenever I speak, I cry out, I proclaim, “Violence and destruction!” because the word of the LORD has become for me constant disgrace and derision. 

If I say, “I won’t mention Him or speak any longer in His name,” His message becomes a fire burning in my heart, shut up in my bones. I become tired of holding it in, and I cannot prevail.  For I have heard the gossip of many people, “Terror is on every side! Report him; let’s report him!” Everyone I trusted watches for my fall. “Perhaps he will be deceived so that we might prevail against him and take our vengeance on him.”

But the LORD is with me like a violent warrior. Therefore, my persecutors will stumble and not prevail. Since they have not succeeded, they will be utterly shamed, an everlasting humiliation that will never be forgotten. LORD of Hosts, testing the righteous and seeing the heart and mind, let me see Your vengeance on them, for I have presented my case to You. (Jer. 20:7-12)

Jesus Expels the Demons

holbein_exorcism

I Hear You, Son of Sira

There are three sorts of people my soul hates, and whose existence I consider an outrage: the poor swollen with pride, the rich who is a liar and an adulterous old man who has no sense. (Sir. 25:2)

Why Do We Have a New Testament?

According to James Barr, R.H. Lightfoot once claimed that the origin of the New Testament should be sought in the moment the early Chris­tians, under the impression of the first Roman persecutions, lost faith in the survival of their religion. As a result of their fear, they decided to write down their traditions and recollections, in order that these might not be lost or deliberately perverted.  (Cited by NP Lemche in his essay ‘The Old Testament: A Hellenistic Book).

Lightfoot is probably right.  And if so, it’s a good thing that they were driven by the fear of extinction.  History has shown their fear to be misplaced but the result of that fear is itself a historical monument without which the world would be an utterly different place.

Quote of the Day

Apply your heart to instruction, And your ears to words of knowledge. (Prov. 23:12)

Truth

God was pleased to save those who believe through the foolishness of preaching. (1 Cor. 1:21)

Truth

An evildoer pays attention to guilty lips; a liar listens to a destructive tongue. (Prov. 17:4)

In Just a Few Days: ‘The God Who Speaks’

Register here.

Quote of the Day

Evil men do not understand justice, But those who seek the LORD understand all.  Better is the poor who walks in his integrity Than one perverse in his ways, though he be rich.  (Prov. 28:5-6)

Laura Robinson and Her Great Analysis of Contemporary ‘End Times’ People

From her twitter

Thread: Has anyone else noticed that the Sure Signs of the Endtimes Foretold in Scripture just change depending on what’s in the news that day? When I was a kid, the Euro and the rise of China as the only superpower were clearly foretold.  Now no one’s talking about the Euro and China isn’t the world’s only superpower, and Scripture has plainly foretold the American embassy in Jerusalem and Trump declaring Jews a nationality.

Five years ago, was anyone reading Revelation and saying that the next president would surely declare Judaism to be a nationality in response to the BDS movement and moving the American embassy? Nope.  It turns out none of this stuff is foretold in the Bible, but the Bible can be made to say this retroactively once you have decided on the event you’re going to fixate on.

*Stage whisper* THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED WITH ISAIAH NINE *gets yanked offstage with a cane around the throat*

Brilliant.  And totally accurate.