An article I contributed to the April 2020 issue of Tabletalk magazine.
At least on a metaphorical level. After the Fall in Eden, the man, woman, and the serpent all stand judged at God’s tribunal. At this judgment scene the curse upon the serpent features two prophecies: 1. The Seed of the woman would crush the serpent’s head (This is future since Heb. 9.28 says a second appearance for salvation). 2. The serpent would pierce the heal of the Seed of the woman.
One of the few artifacts indicating Roman crucifixion shows a heal bone with an iron nail still embedded. This is how the prophecy of Gen. 3.15 was fulfilled. The people reading this text probably were only aware of vipers instead of constrictors, and so would reason a fatal bite. It was. Gen. 3.15 also implies a resurrection since the crushing is after the harvest at the end of the age.
It is well–known from literature that the Romans crucified rebels and criminals. In 1968, an ossuary (bone box; see below) was found, among others, in a tomb in north Jerusalem in which were the bones of a 28 year old man and those of a child. A 4.3 inch nail penetrated the right heel bone […]
Jesus’s seventy or seventy-two disciples returned to him excited after Jesus sent them out on their mission. “Lord, even the demons are subjected to us by your name!” (10:17). Jesus will redirect some of their excitement, but before turning to that, let me make a brief comment on the seventy or seventy-two. A majority of…
The title is not original with me but apt.
“You do you.” Perhaps there’s no phrase the captures our current cultural moment better. Back in 2015, Colson Whitehead of the New York Times Magazine, lamented this phrase, arguing that it “perfectly captures our narcissistic culture.” Indeed, it is hard to disagree. “You do you” embodies our culture’s commitment to personal fulfillment, self-actualization, and the…
For most Christians (and others reading the bible) the book of Job is enigmatic. However, by meditating (reflecting on what the text says), readers can gain some insights about Job’s struggles and their own as well. Craig Keener offers one of the better summaries of the book of Job. Not always, or even often, does God explain all of His workings to us. He has, though, given us all we need now during our time in this life.
I often think painfully of godly students or friends who died quite young—for example, Caritha Clarke, Nabeel Qureshi, Aaron Nickerson, and most recently Brittany Buchanan Douglas. The news of these events made little sense to me emotionally, though I have confidence in each case that they are celebrating now; they made it to God’s throne…
The Forger Among Us: The Museum of the Bible Dead Sea Scrolls and the Recent History of Epigraphic Forgeries Prof. Christopher Rollston (Ph.D. Johns Hopkins University) email@example.com Dept. of Classical and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations George Washington University On March 13, 2020, the Museum of the Bible held a symposium in Washington, D.C. …
Over at his award winning blog (it’s true), Ian Paul has interviewed me about Myths & Mistakes, why skepticism sells, and whether textual criticism is the geekiest of the NT subdisciplines. Thanks to Ian for having me.
During the period in Jewish history known as the Divided Monarchy, the formerly united Hebrew nation split into to two kingdoms: the kingdom of Israel in the north and the kingdom of Judah in the south. In our series of bioarchaeographies, we explored the lives of King Ahaz and King Hezekiah of Judah; we now […]
The post A Preliminary Evaluation and Critique of Prosopological Exegesis appeared first on Southern Equip.
When Herod the Great died, his kingdom was divided among his sons by Caesar Augustus. Herod Antipater, better known as Antipas, was granted the right to rule Galilee and Perea. He was given the title of Tetrarch (“ruler of a quarter”), although he was sometimes known as King Herod, as his father had been (Mk […]
Dr. Barrick’s post is informative, cogent, and better than anything I can come up with at the moment:
After one week of research on the ground in Jordan, we turned our attention to Israel for the next two weeks. On our first day, six of us drove a rented van south to the Negev and the Gulf of Aqaba. We went with two purposes in mind: (1) to visit the site of ancient…
In our next bioarchaeography we’ll be exploring the life of the last Herodian King: Herod Agrippa II. With five different Herods mentioned in Scripture (not to mention a couple of Philips who may also have born the name Herod) it can be difficult to keep them straight, so here’s a quick summary: Herod the Great […]
It seems fitting that, having explored the lives of Hebrew, Assyrian, Babylonian, and Persian kings, we should now consider an Egyptian Pharaoh. While many Pharaohs in the book of Genesis are not named, following the convention of Moses’ day, later Pharaohs in Scripture are named, following the convention at the time of later authors.1 One […]
Ancient writings were largely circulated within communities through copying and distributing, with no legal copyright or formal system to control plagiarism. Once a work began to circulate the author became powerless to control the quality of the copying process or to select the audience that would read the work. The permanency of writing and the…
Above: An approximation of Parmenides’ “what is.” THE CONFLICT There is an ongoing conflict between Biblical studies and philosophical theology. N.T. Wright sums it up this way in his essay “Historical Paul and Systematic Theology”: “In a famous conversation between Paul Tillich and C. H. Dodd at Union Seminary in New York, Tillich basically said that […]
Our next bioarchaeography is about one of the most fiercely-debated figures in the Old Testament. Some scholars believe King David was more myth than man who, if he existed, was nothing more than a tribal chief, and certainly not the historical king of a dynasty in Israel. For example, University of Sheffield Professor, Dr. Philip […]
It is that time of year when many of us think about making “New Year’s Resolutions”—only to find that after the third week in January we have forgotten all about them (sigh)! One resolution that some make is that “I will read through the Bible in One Year.” And so, they print out a year […]
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart (Luke 2:19, NIV) Christmas is a joyful time for many parents, but also a time of grief for those who have lost children. (This is also true for other deep relational losses, some of which my wife and I have experienced, but…
“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.” “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that’s all.” –Excerpt from Lewis…
“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.” (Luke 2:1-3) Publius Sulpicius Quirinius (or Cyrenius in the Greek) was a well-known […]
“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.” (Luke 2:1-3) While he is only mentioned once in Scripture, Caesar Augustus plays […]
In our series of bioarchaeographies, we’ve used archaeology to explore the lives of the great Assyrian king, Tiglath-Pileser III, and the great Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar II. It seems fitting that we should look at a king from the next dominate empire in history: the Persian king, Cyrus the Great. Cyrus II was the founder of […]
Solus Christus (Christ Alone) versus Totus Christus (the Whole Christ). If one wants to capture the difference between the evangelical faith and Roman Catholicism, here it is. On the one hand, the evangelical stress on the uniqueness of Jesus’s person (the God-man) and His atoning work; on the other, the Roman Catholic insistence on the…
In our series of bioarchaeographies, we’ve been using archaeology to tell the life story of biblical figures. So far we’ve studied King Hezekiah, Pontius Pilate, Nebuchadnezzar, Gallio, and Tiglath-Pileser III. With each of these biblical characters, we’ve seen direct archaeological evidence that affirms their historicity as well as specific details in Scripture. Sometimes in archaeology, […]
I’m deep into Tom Holland’s latest book in which he argues at length that values that for many in the West are simply those of any humane, civilized person in fact are shaped heavily by the influence of Christianity: Dominion: The Making of the Western Mind (London: Little & Brown, 2019). Holland gave the gist of his […]
(Several months ago, I was asked to write a contribution to a multi-author work on Jesus to be published in French, my contribution to deal with the origins of Jesus-devotion. I was given a word-limit, and so had to be brief. The result is something of a capsulized treatment of the matter. I post below […]
REVIEWS OF BIBLICAL AND EARLY CHRISTIAN STUDIES:2019.3.4 | Joshua A. Berman. Inconsistency in the Torah: Ancient Literary Convention and the Limits of Source Criticism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017. ISBN 9780190658809. Review by Lindsey A. Askin, University of Bristol.Excerpt:… We have always known the Pentateuch repeats itself but historically we have been less certain about…
Why would tracing the archaeology of a shipwreck be important to the understanding of the bible? One thing, it helps establish the credibility of the chronicler of the account. These indirect or ancillary witnesses are often needed to lend support to the overall story. Here is a partial (see the other posts) explanation detailing some of the events of Paul’s shipwreck on Malta:
Acts 27:29 And fearing that we might run aground somewhere on the rocks, they cast four anchors from the stern and wished for daybreak. As noted previously, the captain, sensing that the ship was approaching land, cast off four “storm anchors” to secure the ship. Mark Gatt notes, logically, that the ship did not spend […]
There are no contradictions in scripture. However, there are apparent contradictions which dissolve with further insight from God-directed studies. Cornelius Van Til used the term “paradox” to describe apparent contradictions in scripture. Here is analysis into his writings about “limiting concepts” which is quite different from the way non-Christians define the term:
I have recently been wading into the thought of the 20th century Reformed theologian Cornelius Van Til in order to consider his use of the term “limiting concept.” These words appear throughout his collected works, both in his full-length books and his shorter articles. Our ability to define them is therefore key to understanding both…
I commend a newly-published study of what is called “harmonization” of texts of the Gospels: Cambry G. Pardee, Scribal Harmonization in the Synoptic Gospels, NTTSD, 60 (Leiden: Brill, 2019). I have just completed a larger review for Review of Biblical Literature which won’t appear till November this year, but the book deserves to be noticed […]