New book! Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus

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Greek Brain, Hebrew Brain: How Parables Worked

(An excerpt from my book, Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus )

Jesus’s parables fit perfectly into a non-Western, Jewish culture that expressed itself through tangible metaphors. He was engaging in sophisticated theological teaching, but we miss it if we are looking for the deductive abstract arguments of the Greeks.

Jesus often based his reasoning on experience rather than if-then logic. He did this in multiple ways:

 

Experience of the Natural World

Jesus frequently used observations about nature and daily life to shed light on spiritual realities. Sometimes he highlighted a lesson by pointing out what was obviously true: grapes don’t grow on thorn bushes. Likewise, people are known by their “fruit.” That seems pretty logical.

More often, however, Jesus used physical examples that have a surprising illogic about them to shed light on the mysterious ways of God…

A speck of a mustard seed can grow into an enormous tree.

A blossom that wilts in a day is more gorgeously adorned than a king’s robe.

Tiny clues from creation give us a glimpse into God’s unfathomable ways. (1)

In contrast, Western reasoning often attempts to systematize theology by reducing and affixing God’s thoughts onto a logical grid, flattening and straightening them so that they fit into predictable patterns.

Jesus’s parables, however, embraced the fact that our material world is multifaceted and complex. If God’s creation surprises and perplexes us, shouldn’t its Creator…

Listen to Lois’ Story – An Interview on “The Profile”

If you’d like to hear more about my life story and perspective, I did an interview in London with Sam Hailes on “The Profile” on Premier Christian Radio that aired Saturday, July 21, 2018. I thought it was a very good conversation.

Listen to it at this link.

 

 

This is their description of the interview:

Lois shares her story of growing up in a Lutheran family, becoming a scientist and later discovering how studying the Hebraic background and context to the Bible can make the scriptures come alive in a fresh way. Lois speaks passionately about her life’s work and shares a number of insights which will help Christians understand Christ’s words in the New Testament. She also shares openly about the need to avoid dangerous excesses which can sometime be found within the Jewish Roots movement.