The Pentateuch in the Prophets

I’ve done a fair amount on the use of the Hebrew Bible in the New Testament, but very little on the use of earlier parts of the Hebrew Bible in later parts of that same corpus. Someone asked me for recommended reading on that topic, and so I offered to post the question here. Two [Read More...]


This post is not about the conservative religious view of the Biblical authors and copyists, whose writing activity was supposedly taken over by God to make God the author. No, this isn’t a metaphor – it is about an actual robotic scribe! Bible History Daily reported the story, including the fact that the process does not produce [Read More...]

Conservative Illustration of Pentateuchal Composition

I recently read an assignment which drew on sources critical of the Documentary Hypothesis. Ironically, the assignment was in fact plagiarized from a number of online sources. And at least one of those sources in turn clearly plagiarized from another. Here’s a bit of text: The J, or Jehovahist, document (usually known as the Yahwehist [Read More...]

Parables, by Robert Aldridge

This modern oratorio by Robert Livingston Aldridge, “Parables,” uses texts from Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, originally setting out with the intent to highlight similarities between the three traditions, but ending up highlighting differences as well in very striking ways. See the composer’s interview with Ronnie Reich and a piece by Minnesota Public Radio for more information, as [Read More...]

You Have Heard Them Called Antitheses, But I Say To You…

Doug Chaplin has posted about the extraordinary antitheses in Matthew’s Gospel. I disagree with his way of understanding them, and so thought I would write a post in response. I regularly tell my students that it is unlikely that these sayings should be understood as meaning “You heard God say in the past, but I [Read More...]

Retelling Romans 3:21-31

And now, God’s justice has been manifested apart from the Bible (though the Bible testifies to it): God’s justice through the faithfulness of Christ Jesus to all who trust. For there is no distinction: since all have sinned and lack God’s glory, all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption accomplished in Christ [Read More...]

N. T. Wright and James D. G. Dunn on the New Perspective on Paul

HT Cliff Kvidahl on Facebook [Read more...]

It Is Written vs. God Has Shown Me

Fred Clark has an excellent post highlighting the contrast between two different outlooks reflected in Acts 10:28, which reads as follows:  You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with or visit a Gentile. But God has shown me that I should not call anyone impure or unclean. On [Read More...]

The Ten Recommendations

When I saw yesterday’s Non Sequitur cartoon, it reminded me of something that I run up against regularly in class: For today’s students, the Ten Commandments have always been ten “recommendations” or “suggestions.” No matter how strongly they were ingrained in them from an early age, they have not had the status of law – apart from [Read More...]

The Bible and Economic and Social Justice: Following Ruth into Leviticus

I’ve been wanting to post some thoughts that came up in my class on the Bible last week. We were discussing the Book of Ruth, which itself challenged Israelite laws and prejudices aimed at Moabites (that itself is a message that some Christians seem not to have grasped). In the process of discussing Ruth, the [Read More...]

Dividing Land Like Wealth

I reposted this image that came my way on Facebook, and it generated a significant amount of discussion. I find it interesting for a number of reasons, besides the striking illustration of the distribution of wealth in the United States. It helps make the point that, just as one cannot simply produce more land as [Read More...]