Lawyers and the Bible

I’m a lawyer, and this short post makes a few points about how interpreting the Bible is like and unlike what lawyers do. *** Among the major similarities are these:  Two major lawyer activities are interpreting texts and making arguments (including counterarguments) about what texts mean.  The latter skills, significantly, require you to learn to … [Read more…]

A Couple of Bible Thoughts To Start the Month

 The more complicated theological questions raised in the Bible are also less important — of an intricacy disproportionate to their interest.  Professional theologians instinctively and understandably will not want to concede this.  But, indeed, the really important question is, What does God want us to do?  And the answer to that is not complicated or … [Read more…]

Truth and Scripture

This post argues that (1) there are sound bases for believing that Scripture is true — and (2) I give some particular attention to the first nine chapters of Genesis, which in my opinion belong to a unique Bible genre — and that (3) Christians should strive to interpret Scripture so that it is consistent … [Read more…]

Why Did Luke Write “Acts”?

Colin J. Hemer’s book The Book of Acts in the Setting of Hellenistic History prompted me to think about why Luke wrote Acts.  The beloved physician tells us he wrote his Gospel for the “most excellent Theophilus” (Luke 1:1-4), who is likewise mentioned in its sequel Acts (1:1), but the point of the writing and then … [Read more…]

Some Notes on Genesis 3

Genesis 3 is the chapter about Adam, Eve, and the apple. It’s an essentially self-contained narrative (although the last verse of chapter 2 foreshadows it and the first verse of chapter 4 rather logically follows it — and, for that matter, the murder recounted in chapter 4 sadly and inevitably comes next). Its 24 verses … [Read more…]

A Dialogue on Scripture

This post, presented as a dialogue, addresses what I think are some basic issues raised by Christians’ recognition and use of Scripture. What do you mean by Scripture? Most dictionary definitions say simply it is writing that a particular religion holds to be “sacred” or “holy.” So it is writing that is God-related, but of … [Read more…]

The Old Testament Books — in Fifteen Couplets

The Old Testament Books — in Fifteen Couplets Creation of all, and Jews starting:  That’s Genesis. In Exodus, Moses is Pharaoh’s arch nemesis. Leviticus is “legal”; for Numbers, think “census.” Deuteronomy doubles what we have for lenses. — The twelve books that follow are all Jewish hist’ry. They show that God’s frequent dismay is no … [Read more…]

The Lord’s Prayer as Chiasm

I think there’s a case to be made that the Lord’s Prayer has a chiastic structure: Opening (“Our Father, Who art in Heaven”) > > Glory – Kingdom – Power (“hallowed”=glory, “kingdom”=kingdom, “will”=power) — in all places (“on Earth as it is in Heaven”) > > > > Asking for two very important things (bread … [Read more…]

An Easter Thought

Happy Easter! He is risen! Some may ask, Is it really true that someone can go to Heaven, after leading a bad life, simply by repenting and professing one’s belief in Jesus Christ at the last moment, and without ever doing a good work? We know that apparently the answer is, Yes — because it … [Read more…]