The Problem with Preaching– Part Three

Once a preacher realizes that if he doesn't know the original languages, then he's NOT preaching the Bible but rather a translation of the Bible (however good), he or she then must accept that this necessarily means he is preaching someone else's interpretation of what the inspired text means (for every translation is already an interpretation). This requires some swallowing hard of course. But once the nature of the situation actually dawns on the preacher, that's when a big reality check … [Read more...]

The Problem with Preaching– Part Two

In my last post, I pointed out that preaching seems to be somewhat missing in action within the context of early church meetings in homes, and elsewhere. Of course there is nothing in these NT texts that says or suggests there is anything wrong with preaching in such worship contexts. Far from it. And in an age of increasing Biblical illiteracy it's frankly irresponsible to think that we would be fine without good preaching in the church. We wouldn't, and we aren't, and I say 'we aren't' … [Read more...]

The Lightfoot Bookplate– Mo Better Now

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New Profile at AFTE

Here below is a little interview with me about being one of the first John Wesley Fellows. See what you think (BW3). The picture immediately below is of Dr. Warren Smith (Duke) and Dr. Joel Lemon (Candler) at a recent John Wesley Fellows meeting which I attended.Ben Witherington III A New Testament scholar influencing the cultureBen WitheringtonWitherington, a professor at Asbury Theological Seminary who has written more than 40 books, conducts seminars to combat Biblical … [Read more...]

The Problem with Preaching— Part One

'Preaching',it's what makes so much of the Protestant world go around. It's what many people go to church to hear--- not the singing, not the jingling of coins in the plate, not the appeals of the Sunday school class, or the peals of the church bells, but preaching. This is in some ways odd, as the NT say very little about preaching to the choir, or the already converted. Of all the many sermons in Acts, all but one of them is directed to the unconverted.Preaching seems to be an … [Read more...]

Learning from Fallacies

Here's another fine post by my friend Larry Hurtado. See what you think. BW3by larryhurtadoLast week (29-31 August) featured the 2013 British New Testament Conference (in St. Andrews), always a combination of scholarly papers (of varying persuasiveness), catching up with long-time colleagues, and meeting bright and energetic postgrad students from various universities. The BNTC was founded through the leadership efforts of J.D.G. Dunn and (the late) Graham Stanton, in discussions … [Read more...]

Lightfoot Quotes for a Sunday

“…there was a peculiar fitness in the time that was selected for the revelation of Messiah to his people. But can we venture a step beyond, and say that we see in the popular mind of the day the germ of a natural development of the Christian scheme? The voice of prophecy had been silent for four centuries, but it was felt to be as the death-like stillness that precedes the hurricane. Hence, men with busy whisperings were anxiously looking for the coming of that great Terrible Day of the Lord … [Read more...]

Performance of Texts— Models

Here is a helpful post by my friend and colleague Larry Hurtado. See what you think BW3by larryhurtadoAt a recent conference there was a paper presented in which there was repeated reference to the "performance" of passages from the Gospels in early Christian gatherings. Indeed, the presenter posited that this likely involved acting out passages, such as the narrative parables of Jesus. In recent years there have been a number of similar claims, and the word "performance" seems to … [Read more...]

What Does the Bible Say About Other Religions? is an excellent conversation starter on the stated topic in the heading above by my friend Dr. James Howell, senior minister at my home UM church in Charlotte N.C. There's a lot here I agree with, and some I don't, but regardless its an excellent way to begin to discuss this topic. … [Read more...]