New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 26: Matthew 26:47–27:26; Mark 14:43–72; Luke 22:47–71; John 18:1–27

St. Peter's of Gallicantu "crowing rooster", the traditional location.

Today's readings cover the events of Gethsemane, Jesus being brought before Pilate and a Jewish council, and other such well known events of the last days of Jesus.We'll pick up in  Matthew 26:50- And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him. (KJV) Does Jesus mean it when he refers to Judas as "friend"? Is he making a point by using a term of address that contrasts with "brother," the usual form of address between the di … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 25: Matthew 26:36–46; Mark 14:32–42; Luke 22:39–46. Also, BYU’s New Testament Commentary

Between a family reunion on the east coast, and a busy work week, I offer a few tidbits on today's readings.First, though, a note on my work. I'm at BYU for the summer working on their New Testament Commentary series, at the summer seminar. Many people don't know about either the series or the seminar. This project has been in the works for years and is just now coming to light. This is a formal, scholarly, confessional series of New Testament commentary. S. Kent Brown's volume on Luke is th … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 24: John 16-17


Today's chapters continue Jesus' final sermon at the last supper, which uniquely extends to multiple chapters, only in John. These chapters have some puzzling statements, and are difficult to parse. I don't have any magic unifying interpretation, so I'll offer some specific points instead.In terms of structure, 16 still sounds like exposition or sermon, whereas 17 is known as the great intercessory prayer. Were they still in the upper room at that point? Had they gone somewhere? Note that … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 23: Luke 22, John 13-15.

Carl Bloch's Last Supper, public domain

Luke 22 opens with "Satan enter[ing] into Judas called Iscariot." John refers to this as "Satan [had] put into the heart of Judas Iscariot... to betray" Jesus. The heart, in Israelite thought, was not just the center of emotion but also conscious thought and planning. In other words, while we could read Luke as something vaguely like demonic possession, John seems to say that Judas was tempted by the suggestion. … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 22: Matthew 25

A short commentary tonight, which I'll try to update later this week.Matthew 25 is part and parcel of Matthew 24, with two parables further illustrating Jesus' eschatological themes. (Remember that our biblical chapter and verse divisions are medieval and somewhat artificial, not part of the original text. See here. The oldest divisions in the text are marked in the KJV by the ❡ or paragraph marker.) … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 21: Matthew 24 + JST Matthew 24

not one stone will be left here upon another; all will be thrown down...

Today covers only one chapter, an interesting one. Known sometimes as the Olivet Discourse (because it's given on the Mount of Olives) or the Little Apocalypse (because Gr. apokalypsis is the word for "revelation." The Book of Revelation would be the "big" revelation/apocalypse, and Matthew 24-25 is the little one.) Several things are of interest.  … [Read more...]

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 20: Matt 21:1-11, 23-46; 23; John 12:1-8

From Logos/Faithlife.

We're getting into the last week of Jesus' life. Since it was on sale, I picked up The Last Week: What the Gospels Really Teach about Jesus Final Days in Jerusalem, which follows Jesus through his last week, with particular focus on Mark's Gospel (the earliest of the four.) I'll quote from it a bit in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, Eric Huntsman has a chronology of the last week of Jesus' life here. … [Read more...]

Short Gospel Doctrine Lesson 19 and Book Review of The New Testament Made Harder

Screen Shot 2015-05-30 at 2.44.48 PM

I've gotten behind, due to some unanticipated red-eye travel cross-country, spontaneous camping in Nauvoo with extended family, intensive home-improvement-on-a-tight-deadline, etc. I'll try to catch up by taking a page out of a new book. I've received a review copy of James Faulconer's The New Testament Made Harder- Scripture Study Questions. Faulconer is a philosophy professor at BYU, who previously wrote Scripture Study: Tools and Suggestions (Amazon, Maxwell Institute) and a lot of other th … [Read more...]