In what sense do all lack the glory of God in Romans 3:23? Sigurd Grindheim considers this question in his article “A Theology of Glory: Paul’s Use of δόξα Terminology in Romans.”[1] Given the importance of “glory” in Romans (16 occurrences of δόξα), Grindheim’s task is significant. “God’s Glory” in a Nutshell Scholars commonly explain Rom 3:23 as an allusion to Adam and the loss of God’s image. Grindheim examines the Greek Old Testament (i.e., Septuagint, LXX), which Paul often… Read more

In the past year, a number of interesting articles have been published about honor and shame in the Bible. Te-Li Lau looks at Paul’s language in 1 Corinthians in an article titled “I write these things not to shame you” (JETS 60, no. 1 (2017): 105–24). Paul’s Contrary Uses of Shame Lau focuses on 1 Cor 4:14. To remind you of the context, 1 Cor 4:13–15 says …when slandered, we entreat. We have become, and are still, like the scum… Read more

We do not honor the Reformers as mere dominoes who catalyzed the Protestant church. Rather, they instilled new DNA into the Church. Read more

A local brother asked, “Doesn’t Martin Luther oppose a theology of honor and shame?” Luther famously demurs a “theology of glory” and exalts a “theology of the cross.”[1] What’s more, his consistent emphasis on law also seems to the honor-shame theology I and other propose. Do the Reformers contradict such a theology? Why Luther Rejects a “Theology of Glory” In this 500th anniversary year of the Reformation, countless articles and books will celebrate the theology of Luther and other reformers…. Read more

Can we truly claim to be children of the Reformation yet neglect the original languages? Read more

I can’t recommend Brene Brown’s new book. And she likely doesn’t care. I pre-ordered Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and digested it with a couple of days. I’m an easy sale. But I’m not sold on this one. Sorry Brene. Can we “belong” alone? Rule #1 when reviewing a book is this: judge a book based on its intended goal. In a word, Brown writes to help people become more shame-resistant by empowering them to break from… Read more

After missing last year, I’m looking forward to attending this year’s annual meetings for ETS (Evangelical Theological Society) and SBL (Society of Biblical Literature). If you plan to come, I’d love to connect. I’ll be giving talks at both conferences. Below are the presentation titles and other relevant information. Reading Scripture with “Eastern” Eyes: How Honor and Shame Make Us More Asian and Biblical Here is an introduction to my ETS presentation. Anyone can read the Bible with “Eastern” eyes…. Read more

“Whoever uses the best rhetorical rules” …. Missionary rhetorical results in multiples problems. It silences dialogue by pressuring people to settle for what is merely true. It obscures the difference between “good” and “best.” Such rhetoric plants the seeds of division…. I mention the following examples so that we can consciously avoid rhetorical traps…. Read more

We Americans charge the hill while screaming, “You can’t tell me what to do!” Read more

Whoever said America was not an honor-shame society? Just this week, the President of the United States and LeBron “King” James exchanged barbs on Twitter that concerned whether being invited to the White House is an “honor.” Also, millions of Americans are incensed that NFL players expressed protest during the national anthem and so “disrespect” the flag and “dishonor” US soldiers. What provokes so many people? They are not debating “legality” and absolute moral standards. Ultimately the hubbub is about… Read more

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