Modern Bible readers are often frustrated by the fact that the Bible is full of multiple retellings of stories, and they aren’t always in exact agreement with each other. Indeed, from the very first page of Genesis we find that even the creation story itself is told two times, in Genesis 1 and 2. We […]
Dear Pastors (and other friends), could this be the year that we don’t repeat an ugly error? The crowds that shouted “Crucify” at Jesus’ trial were not the same ones that cheered with shouts of “Hosanna” on Palm Sunday. This story has resulted in egregious antisemitism over the centuries, but it can be corrected simply […]
Cultures where people act as if a righteous God is watching tend to prosper as a result, believe it or not.
(This is a slightly longer version of the article I wrote for Premier Christianity this month that includes footnotes.) In recent years, some Christians, including my fellow Premier Christianity columnist Chine McDonald, have decided to stop using masculine pronouns (he/him) for God. Chine made some very good points in her recent article, including that God […]
According to Deuteronomy 25:5-10, in Israel when a man died without a son, his wife would be taken in marriage by one of his other brothers. The reason was so that the man’s “name would not be cut off” and his property would pass on to a male heir. This also assured that the widow […]
A few months ago I went to Uganda to visit an Old Testament scholar there, Rev. Dr. Milly Erema, who reads the Bible with “ancient” eyes. (More below.) Many of her insights come from living in a traditional eastern African society not far from the biblical world, culturally. Answers to many modern biblical conundrums become […]
It is easy for Christians to read these passages smugly, as if only the foolish Pharisees could make these mistakes. Instead, we should see the sayings of Jesus as wise words to anyone who yearns to obey God.
Ask any Christian familiar with the Hebraic roots of their faith: what day of the week is uniquely set apart by the Hebrew Scriptures? The Sabbath, of course. All other holy days, because they are fixed by the combined lunar-solar Hebrew calendar, fall on a different day of the week each year. Or do they?
The New Testament talks non-stop about the resurrection and how it proves Jesus is the Christ, God’s anointed Messianic King. Not many Christians understand why, though.
Loving our enemies might seem impossible, but it’s central to what it means to be a Christian. Lois Tverberg expands on Christ’s most challenging command. Some of Jesus’ teachings were quite similar to those of other rabbinic teachers of his time. There was, however, one major theme that was entirely unique to him. Not only […]