Biblical Studies

Glorifying His Name (John 12.20–32)

30 November 2011 Biblical Studies

My students often ask me: “What do I need to do to be in God’s will?” Sometimes we put so much pressure on ourselves to accomplish God’s will, forgetting that he will take care of what is necessary to accomplish his promises. We strive and strive and strive, and so often we fail. My answer always comes from Matthew 23.

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Thumbnail image for “The Lord is My Light” — Alister McGrath

“The Lord is My Light” — Alister McGrath

12 December 2010 Biblical Studies

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing Alister McGrath lecture at the Lanier Theological Library in northwest Houston. McGrath, a professor at Oxford with a doctorate in both molecular biophysics and divinity, is a scholar of the highest order and it was a real pleasure to see him in action.

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Thumbnail image for Report from “Corinth in Contrast: Studies in Inequality”

Report from “Corinth in Contrast: Studies in Inequality”

1 October 2010 Biblical Studies

As I type this, I’m laughing at Ronald Stroud, an older gentleman and professor of Classics at UC Berkeley, who has a knack for asking insightful questions with lovely (and humorous) rhetorical flourish.

Dr. Stroud is just one of the presenters at “Corinth in Contrast: Studies in Equality”, a conference hosted by the departments of Classics, Religious Studies, and the Institute for the Study of Antiquity and Christian Origins (ISAC) at the University of Texas at Austin.

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Thumbnail image for Ecclesiastes, Heraclitus, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics

Ecclesiastes, Heraclitus, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics

20 August 2010 Biblical Studies

In Plato’s dialogue Cratylus, Socrates gives us one of Heraclitus’s most important ideas: You cannot step twice into the same stream. For Heraclitus, this idea epitomized his doctrine of flux — everything is constantly changing. Though it may seem as if you are stepping into the same stream a second time, so much has changed since you have stepped into it — you are feeling different water molecules, there are microscopic shifts in sediment, the temperature has changed by a thousandth of a degree, etc.

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Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace (Part 8)

19 April 2010 Biblical Studies

Part eight of the series “Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace.” Thus, we have demonstrated the importance of patristic evidence for the textual criticism of Heb 2:9. Because Origen’s citations pass the appropriate tests (the grammar of the citation is not significantly affected; the author may be quoting directly from a text; our critical edtion is reliable; and the readings are preserved in the original Greek), it should be reckoned as a powerful witness to the text of Hebrews during that time period. Moreover, since in context it makes little difference which variant he chooses, Origen’s witness seems rather strong, at least for Alexandria.

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Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace (Part 7)

12 April 2010 Biblical Studies

Part seven of the series “Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace.” Irenaeus seems to be fighting the same battle in Book 3 of Adversus haereses. In III.16.9, he lays out the testimony of Paul in an attempt to refute the notion that there is a divine Christ distinct from a human Jesus; he wants to show that they are one and the same.

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Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace (Part 6)

5 April 2010 Biblical Studies

Part six of the series “Hebrews 2:9 – Separated by Grace.”

Origen mentions the χωρίς reading of Heb 2:9 six times, four of which are preserved in Greek, two in the Latin translations by Rufinus. ((Commentary on John, I.35, XXVIII.18 (bis); Dialogue with Heraclides, 27; Commentary on Romans III.8 and V.7. See Garnet,“Hebrews 2:9.” I have adopted where applicable the Sources Chrétiennes system for labeling chapters, rather than the system used by Garnet.)) While Origen does not seem to declare a preference for either reading, he does seem to favor the χωρίς reading over χάριτι.

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Thumbnail image for A Trustworthy Word (2 Tim 2.11-13)

A Trustworthy Word (2 Tim 2.11-13)

2 April 2010 Biblical Studies

Earlier this week, I briefly discussed the poem in 2 Tim 2.11–13 in my post about parathēkē. Here, I’d like to explore this passage a bit more, line-by-line. First, let’s set the context. The purpose for 2 Timothy, predominantly, is to encourage a co-worker in Christ to continue to preach boldly the gospel, and to avoid apostasy at all cost.

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Thumbnail image for <em>Parathēkē</em>: The Beautiful Thing Entrusted to You (Part Two)

Parathēkē: The Beautiful Thing Entrusted to You (Part Two)

31 March 2010 Biblical Studies

In a previous post, I made the point that the parathēkē (παραθήκη), the beautiful thing that God has entrusted to us (in the parlance of the epistles of to Timothy), is not necessarily the Gospel, but really a certain kind of doctrine or orthodoxy — right teaching. First, in order to understand this, we must understand the difference between Gospel and Orthodoxy or Gospel and Teaching.

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Thumbnail image for What’s Wrong with Systematic Theology.

What’s Wrong with Systematic Theology.

29 March 2010 Biblical Studies

Allow me to draw your attention to the period (.) ending the title of this post. Normally I would have a question mark (?) here, but I am making a grand statement! Yes, I think there is something inherently wrong with the idea of systematic theology.

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