July 5, 2018

Psalms is one of the most-often quoted books in the New Testament. Psalm 110, in fact, is the most alluded-to passage in the New Testament. (The other two books quoted most often are Deuteronomy and Isaiah.) For Mormons, Psalms is one of those many books we have a strong tradition… of ignoring.  Yet, said President Benson, “The psalms in the Old Testament have a special food for the soul of one in distress.” Psalms are often prayers, songs, or both…. Read more

July 3, 2018

As I gather most people are past these chapters, and I happen to be crazy busy, I am not updating them as much as I (and perhaps you) hoped. First, take a look at my separate post on Psalm 51. Second, here is my podcast on these chapters. I strongly recommend taking a listen/look, because it’s the counterbalance to what is below. (more…) Read more

July 3, 2018

Here’s the podcast on these chapters, with some useful notes. The purpose of this lesson is to focus on the friendship between David and Jonathan, but the narrative is primarily about David trying to avoid being killed. The guy trying to kill him is no other than his father-in-law Saul (since he married Michal), who is also Jonathan’s father.  Your in-laws don’t seem so bad now, eh? Along the lines of “friendship” it’s worth pointing out that Joseph Smith said “Friendship is… Read more

July 3, 2018

First off,  go listen to my old podcast here where I talk about David, Goliath, and the Philistines. (more…) Read more

July 2, 2018

Today, we’re focusing entirely on Ruth, and then just on a small section of Ruth. (I’d really like to write a long article for Ruth as I did for Judah and Tamar, but my list of projects is long.) Ruth is a short and masterful novella. If you haven’t read it yet, give it a quick read. It’s four chapters, minimal characters. I’ll assume you know the story for the rest of this post. I do have a podcast on Ruth… Read more

July 2, 2018

First, here is my podcast for this lesson. Now, as we move into books like Samuel and Kings that are more historical in nature, we need to discuss just what that means. How should we read and understand these? (more…) Read more

July 2, 2018

The Book of Judges begins with the death of Joshua, and is arranged in very distinct and obvious cycles: Israel prospers, forgets God and embraces idolatry, is allowed to be enslaved/captured by its neighbors until it repents, and then God raises up a charismatic military leader or “judge” who delivers Israel from captivity. Wash, rinse, repeat. (more…) Read more

July 2, 2018

We are now out of the Pentateuch, into what’s called the Deuteronomistic History, or DH. This refers to the books of Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings. (more…) Read more

July 2, 2018

“Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Mat 22:36-40 KJV) I begin with this familiar passage because it bears directly on… Read more

June 29, 2018

I’ve finally had time to update some Old Testament posts, and run into some technical issues. Patheos is looking into it, and I hope to be caught-up soon. In the meantime, I had opportunity to record a podcast with LDS Missioncast. Although aimed at missionaries and pre-missionaries, I hope what I had to say will have some insight for everyone. We talked about the problem of proof-texting, or using a verse out of context to prove a point, and why… Read more

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