How to understand ‘biblical inerrantists’


The modern assertion of “biblical inerrancy” is best explained in a 1978 document called the “Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy.” That statement includes 19 denials that tell you everything you need to know about inerrancy and inerrantists. Just read through those denials and, in each case, replace “We Deny that …” with “We Are Very Much Afraid that …” [Read more...]

‘Purity culture’ isn’t just a sex thing. It’s a do-nothing thing.

Keep yourself from being polluted by the world.

What then, is a good Christian to do in such a world? As little as possible. Faith is a blank page that must be kept blank. It is a spotless, pure and undefiled white sheet that must be hidden away from anything and everything that might stain its pure whiteness. [Read more...]

The ‘Rocky’ road of John’s geography


The training montage in “Rocky II” offers an implausible — maybe even impossible — version of Philadelphia geography. Philly journalist Dan McQuade plotted out Rocky’s run on a real map of the city and found a messy, mixed-up route of more than 30 miles. Biblical scholars have been doing the same thing, with similar results, examining the geography of the Gospel of John. [Read more...]

‘The Day the Sun Stood Still’


A better presumption, I think, is to assume these storytellers recognized what they were doing and did it deliberately and that something else is going on other than an attempt to provide harmonious, wholly consistent stories that would satisfy the modern sensibilities of readers 2,500 years later. To understand the stories they told, we need to understand the choices they made in telling those stories. We can’t do that if we presume that they never made choices, only mistakes. [Read more...]

The gospel according to 1 Corinthians 13 (part 1)


We all know love when we see it. And when we see the genuine article, we’re awed by it, regardless of the “theological system” (or absence of any such system) of those who show such genuine love. [Read more...]

When did Adam and Eve get married?

Pro-tip: Check the tide charts before scheduling your beach wedding. High tide + rainstorm = flooding.

In the story itself, on its own terms, Adam and Eve didn’t get married in anything like the way Christians today get married. They simply shacked up together. Although, of course, shacks — like clothing — had not yet been invented. Neither had marriage, for that matter. [Read more...]

‘Ceremonial law’ folklore is no substitute for an actual hermeneutic

This is not an accusation of hypocrisy. It is a request to clarify one's hermeneutic.

“Because of Christ, the ceremonial law is repealed,” Tim Keller writes — a sentence that would have baffled Moses, Isaiah, Paul, Luke, and Jesus of Nazareth. This idea of a distinction between “ceremonial law” and “moral law” isn’t something any of those biblical figures or biblical authors would have recognized. It’s not a distinction that can be found in the Bible, only one that can be imposed on it. It’s folklore, not theology. [Read more...]

‘I believe that I shall see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living’

Bree Newsome preaches a sermon on the 27th Psalm in Columbia, South Carolina. (Reuters Media Express/Adam Anderson Photos pic snurched from Vox.)

“We come against … hatred, oppression, and violence. I come against you in the name of God,” Bree Newsome said, high in the air above the statehouse grounds in Columbia, South Carolina on Saturday. Newsome was arrested — charged with defacing monuments on state capitol grounds — but only after she had climbed all the [Read More...]