Commentary as Voice

By John Frye A year ago, within 74 seconds Philando Castile was dead from a rapid firing police officer who thought Philando was reaching for his lawfully right-to-carry gun. Philando shouted to the officer that he did legally have a gun. Philando’s girlfriend testified that Philando was complying with the officer to show his ID. [Read More…]

The Bible is Central 17

Psalm 119:129-136 (letter pe) expresses two things: various words of the Bible (seven different ones) and the wonderful delight the psalmist finds in them. The first word mentioned is “statutes” (‘edot). He finds the edot of God wonderful and therefore he delights to obey them. Statutes are extolled as wonderful — they generate wonder. Torah [Read More…]

St. Augustine and Natural Theology (RJS)

Chapter eight of Alister McGrath’s book A Fine-Tuned Universe: The Quest for God in Science and Theology deals with the views of Augustine of Hippo on creation. Augustine reflected at length on Genesis, creation, and time. These reflections fill the second half of Confessions (Penguin Classics) and crop up in other works. Augustine also wrote [Read More…]

The Bible is Central 16

In the next paragraph of Psalm 119 (vv. 121-128, each beginning with the Hebrew letter Ayin), the psalmist considers his own integrity before God from a variety of angles. He appeals to God on the basis of his own integrity, he yearns for God on that same basis, he opens himself up to God, he [Read More…]

The Christian Story of Sunday

I want to commend Justo Gonzalez’s new book, A Brief History of Sunday: From the New Testament to the New Creation. The story is gnarly, there are some questions we may never answer, but the fact is clear: Christians have established Sunday as a day of worship, fellowship, and rest. Simplistic answers won’t work as this [Read More…]

On the Side of Truth

By Bryan Schackmann the Preaching Minister at the Glendale Church of Christ in Glendale California. A couple months ago I was going to a performance for one of the teens at the church where I serve. On the way there this student texted me – “Are you still coming tonight?” “Yeah, I’m only a few minutes [Read More…]

The Bible is Central 15

Not only is God revealed as “teacher” in Psalm 119:113-120, but God is also the protector in v. 114. The psalmist uses two concrete images for God’s protections: First, God is “my refuge” — the place where the psalmist hides. Second, God is “my shield” — the place where one is protected from attack. Third, [Read More…]

It is God’s Story (RJS)

In chapter six of Adam and the Genome Scot McKnight starts by outlining the ancient Near Eastern context of the biblical creation narratives, including those in Genesis 1-3. Several texts have come to light a few in a variety of forms. Scot considers Enuma Elish, Gilgamesh, Atrahasis, and the Sumerian version of the Atrahasis creation [Read More…]

The Bible is Central 14

The Torah, the Bible for the psalmist, was God’s communication with Israel in order to inform Israel of God’s ways — and its intent was to guide the whole of an Israelite — heart, soul, and strength. Here the psalmist utters one of the few lines of this psalm — from the nun section (119:105-112) [Read More…]

The Bible is Central 13

Psalm 119:97-104, the section labeled mem because every sentence begins with this letter, is about Bible study, or more accurately, Torah devotion. Today we look at v 97 and v 104. O how I love your Torah! It is my study (or musing) all day long (97). I ponder your precepts (piqud), or judgment-decisions-mandates. The [Read More…]