Jesus preached nonstop about the kingdom. I used to think of “kingdom” as abstract, not considering the fact that the word kingdom describes a community.
All sorts of connections fall into place when you start to grasp the Bible’s communal cultural setting.
The modern Western worldview is far from the norm compared to the rest of the world. Could it be that our culture’s “uniqueness” also prevents us from understanding our Bibles?
How does the epic history of Abraham’s descendants relate to the overall story of salvation? Ancient ideas about family are key to the logic of both the Old and New Testaments.
Our modern, Western culture revolves around the individual. In the biblical world, family was everything. What does that actually mean though, in terms of how they thought? I found a fascinating description of this worldview in The Shadow of the Sun, by Ryszard Kapuscinski, as he describes the peoples he encounters throughout his travels in […]
In Walking in the Dust of Rabbi Jesus I talked about Christian individualism. Our tradition greatly emphasizes the idea of isolating ourselves in order to experience God’s presence, whereas Judaism emphasizes community. Many Jewish prayers speak to God as “we” rather than “I.” Their daily morning prayers actually require a minyan, the presence of at […]
The words of Genesis 1 express a profound paradox: Though we’re as insignificant as dust, we reflect the glory of God himself.