To Change the World 1

I begin a series of posts engaging James Hunter’s recent provocative book To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late Modern World. The book’s central questions are both academic and personal according to Hunter. The basic academic questions are: “How is religious faith possible in the late modern world? [Read More...]

Church and Israel – Part 4

It is in Paul that the real hub of the debate on whether the church is the “new Israel” takes place. To begin with, it has to be acknowledged that most of Paul’s reference to “Israel” refer to his religious and ethnic compatriots who do not (yet) believe in Jesus the Messiah (e.g., 1 Cor [Read More...]

Jesus and the Eucharist 7 – Last Post

This post brings our series of interactions with Brant Pitre’s book Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets of the Last Supper to a conclusion. In his sixth chapter, “The Fourth Cup and the Death of Jesus”, which amounts to the last new idea before a couple of concluding chapters, Brant [Read More...]

Church and Israel – Part 3

Another subject for consideration is the position of Jesus in relation to Israel. First, historically speaking, the best way to understand Jesus’ ministry is in the context of Jewish restoration eschatology. Key prophetic hopes were focused on the return of the twelve tribes to Judea from the Diaspora, the reconstitution of a new Israelite kingdom, [Read More...]

The Church and Israel – Part 2

A first factor we have to consider is how the name “Israel” functioned in Judaism and early Christianity. The name “Israel” denoted ancestry from “Jacob” (Gen 32:28), it came to signify the northern kingdom of the Hebrew people (e.g., 1 Kgs 12:20-21), and the name can refer to the people apart from the priesthood (e.g., [Read More...]

Review: Paul and the Gospels

Nick Norelli continues his review of Paul and the Gospels, this time summarizing and evaluating the essays by Joel Willitts and Paul Foster on Paul vis-a-vis the Gospel of Matthew. [Read more...]

Bonhoeffer on the Practice of Spiritual Disciplines

In his exposition of Jesus’ words in  Matthew 6:16-18 in Nachfolge (“Discipleship”), Bonhoeffer has this to say about the importance of practicing spiritual disciplines such as fasting: Jesus takes for granted that disciples will keep the pious practice or exercise of fasting. The life of a disciple requires the strict practice of austerity. The only [Read More...]

The Church and Israel – Part 1

How does the Church relate to Israel? The question has been a perennial one ever since Jewish Christians believers began sharing their faith with fellow Jews (Acts 1–5). It became more of an issue when Jewish Christians were persecuted, denounced, expelled from synagogues, and even cursed as “heretics” by Jewish leaders (John 9:22; 12:42; 16:2; [Read More...]

Joker One and The Fourth of July

It’s the 4th of July in the US. Happy Independence Day to our American readers! (Please indulge us this holiday those still under the Crown). I want to pass on a very interesting and moving story. Yesterday we had a special guest at our church named Donovan Campbell. Donovan is a disciple of Jesus and [Read More...]

Surviving and Growing Up in an Era of Change

Paul Barnett, NT scholar and former Bishop of North Sydney, discusses here how Christians can use the resources of the past to deal with the challenges of the present times. These are turbulent times but that is true to a greater or lesser degree of all historical eras. It is the nature of life.  As [Read More...]

To Change the World – A Preview

James Hunter in his book  To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late Modern World pursues a provocative thesis: The dominant ways of thinking about culture and cultural change are flawed, for they are based on both specious social science and problematic theology. In brief, the model on which [Read More...]

Jesus and the Eucharist 6

I continue to read Brant Pitre’s little book Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist: Unlocking the Secrets of the Last Supper. It is really good. What I love about Brant is that he knows his Old Testament and understands the importance of it for interpreting the New Testament. Every chapter of this little [Read More...]

Struck by Lightning

One of my students at NPU was nearly struck by lightening and he captured it on film. You need to check this out. Thankfully he and his wife are OK. This could have been a very serious accident. Thanks God for protecting Cory and Cassia! [Read more...]

Why We Need Theological Education

Michael Jensen, Lecturer in Christian Doctrine at Moore Theological College, has a good post on Why Theological Education? [Read more...]

Remember JSPL this Conference Season

As we come into the North American conference season, I hope all you Paulinists will remember Journal for the Study of Paul and His Letters, as a possible avenue for publishing your chastened and cherished conference papers! We are always looking for top quality papers to include in the journal. Submission guidelines are here. Also, [Read More...]