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On The Literary Quality Of The Old Testament

"Palestine itself had little natural protection since it was only a narrow strip of settled territory along the seacoast. It formed a natural highway for merchants, visitors, pilgrims, and invaders moving between the great city-states in Mesopotamia and Egypt. Being mountainous for the most part, it could support only a modest population which could not hope to compete with the massive numbers that could be summoned from Egypt to Mesopotamia. Being an international crossroads probably led directly, however, to the high literary culture found in the Old Testament. Biblical authors seem to have known well the beliefs and writings of other nations, but they also produced a quality of writing and thought unequaled in the ancient world." Lawrence Boadt, Reading the Old Testament: An Introduction, p. 36

Freedom And Liberation From The Law

 [Romans 7] 7:25 The Law is holy and its commandment is holy and just and good (12). But sin, that diabolic power, manifests itself in its true colors (12) by using just that good Word of God to rouse in man the dormant will of opposition to God which destroys him. Paul illustrates this working of the Law (as misused by the power of sin) from his early life (7-13). Paul also shows us the working of the Law from his own experience with the Law as a Christian (14-25). It was contact with the Law, confronting him as the commandment, that first gave sin its deadly power in his life (9-11). Paul as a Christian, when confronted by the Law, becomes a man rent by an agonizing struggle (14-24) from which only Christ can and does release him from this hard fought struggle (25). Martin Franzmann and Walter H. Roehrs, Concordia Self-study Commentary [commentary on Romans], p. 131

Jewishness of John

Last week I argued that the Gospel of John was not written by gentiles. This week I will focus on three Jewish aspects of that Gospel. These can be summarized: (1) christology(2) knowledge of Jerusalem(3) language: use of Memra and sons of light These are not the only Hebraic aspects to John but they are enough for now. High christology High christology such as that of John has been seen as late developing and genitle rather than Jewish.Judaism of the first century was diverse and the Christology of John demonstrates affinities with other movements such as essenes.These would be movements within Judaism. First century Judasim tolerated many different views of Messiah."There was a broad spectrum of views tolerated within mainstream Judaism at the time, including the Pharisees, Sadducees and Zealots. Josephus and the Dead Sea Scrolls add the Essenes into the mix. And even Hebrew Christians were still allowed to sit in the synagogues in the early decades of the newly-fou

Was Gospel John Written by Gentiles?

Hugh Fogelman levels a charge, often heard from atheists, that the Gospel of John is ati-semetic. Theological Anti-Semitism is rampant in the Fourth gospel; in other words the gospel of John is anti-Semitic.  No other New Testament writing has as great an anti-Jewish agenda as found in John. Its attack against the individual Jew, “the Jews” and the Jewish observance of Hebrew laws, all reflect the early church’s extreme anti-Semitic stance. When confronted with the question of John’s anti-Semitism Christians do not answer, but respond with a question; “How can the gospel of John be called anti-Semitic when Jesus and his disciples were all Jews?” [1] He echoes some very standard assertions in support of this view: The Christian pulpit deliberately fails to inform their flocks of one important fact; No one knows who wrote any of the Gospels, nor when they were written. The gospel names were simply picked/chosen/assigned by the early church. Also, no one knows the religion of any New Te

Focusing on the Puzzle Piece without Seeing the Whole Puzzle

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“If God would concede me His omnipotence for 24 hours, you would see how many changes I would make in the world. But if He gave me His wisdom too, I would leave things as they are.” ― J.M.L. Monsabre A few days ago, I posted the quote above on my Facebook page. A very good friend of mine who is an atheist (a mistaken belief system transmitted to him by his over-the-top-atheist father) but still a great guy asked, "Really?" And when I responded "Year, really." He responded with the following:  So, you are okay with COVID-19, the massive over population, wars over religious and political differences, the way humans are trashing this planet, the huge difference in the quality of life between those who have and have-not. But, if you think about it, I guess COVID-19 is an example of Darwin at work weeding out the unhealthy from the population. If you are omnipotent and do nothing to help, you're just lazy and we are just an uncared for experiment in a petri dish.

taking break from posting

Breaking Down the Argument from Errancy

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  Recently on Facebook, someone posted the following argument against the existence of God. He introduced it by saying that it was an argument that he had not seen very often, but he gave it the moniker “The Argument from Errancy.” The posted argument read: Premise 1. If the Christian God exists and wants to preserve His Word in the Bible, it is more probable than not that the Bible would be unambiguously inerrant and clearly of supernatural origin. Premise 2. The Bible is seemingly errant and man-made. Conclusion 1. Therefore, it is unlikely that the Bible is the inspired Word of God Conclusion 2. Therefore, it is unlikely that the Christian God would exist. The author then added these notes about Premise 1 and 2: P1 seems pretty straightforward. Jesus himself clearly saw Scripture as authoritative, and Paul says that all scripture is God-Breathed. Scripture would allow laymen to understand God. P2 requires more evidence on the skeptics’ part, but they can appeal to his

Countering Scientism

Scientism is the understanding that science is the only valid form of knowledge . It's an ideology and permeates real scientific circles. When thinkers whose understanding is colored by this ideology their defense of science against valid ordinary critique is ideological and programmed, We can always spot this kind of thinking immediately because they inevitably see any valid criticism as an attack upon the very notion of science, This tendency to think of science as some fragile sacred truth that dare not be questioned is emblematic of ideological reverence,  An example bof this attitude is found in the essay by Marcel Kuntz is at the Laboratoire de Physiologie Cellulaire Végétale, CNRS/Université Joseph Fourier/CEA/INRA in Grenoble, The essay entitled "The Postmodern assault on Science" [1] Kuntz tells us "Postmodernist thought is being used to attack the scientific worldview and undermine scientific truths; a disturbing trend that has gone unnoticed by a majo

The Multiverse of Madness and Fallacies

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I am very excited! Production has begun on the second Dr. Strange movie, Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness ! I loved reading Dr. Strange comic books as a child, and I loved the first Dr. Strange movie, so when it comes to this upcoming Dr. Strange movie, I am like a kid at Christmas staring at the animatronic characters in a department store window. Even more intriguing is the idea that Dr. Strange will apparently be adventuring across the multiverse – a concept introduced to movie-goers in previous Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies such as the first Dr. Strange, Ant-Man, the Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far from Home. The multiverse establishes a creative playground for endless adventures in alternative universes for the heroes of the MCU. The movie website, Cinemablend.com, explains the multiverse as used in the MCU :        In short, the idea is that reality as we know it is simply one of an infinite number – including those that are almost exactly the same as

Hartshorne's Modal Argument (for God)

What follows is one of the most challenging subjects you will ever hear about. It is the best way to get a head ache, but I think it proves the existence of God. The problem is it requires a very specialized background to understand it. First you have to understand modal logic. Modal Logic is so called because it turns upon the use of so called "modal operators." It's called "modal" because it is the logic of modes of being. "modes" as in what type of existence something exits in, whether it is dependent upon other things, whether it can cease or fail to exist and so forth. The modal operators are "necessity," "contingency" "impossibly," "possibility." Necessity and contingency lie at the base of our modern understanding of cause and effect. They come from scholastic notions of logic, but the distinction between the notion our modern notions of c/e and the scholastic ones in the middle ages is not that great.

Statement from Wheaton College Faculty and Staff – A Hollow Repentance?

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Earlier this month, an event happened that has very much dominated the news: protestors upset at what they viewed as election fraud protested outside the Capitol building. According to news reports as confirmed by photos, some illegally entered the Capitol building itself apparently intent upon disrupting the electoral college vote certification. During the protest, a Capitol policeman and a protestor were both killed. Three others died at the site. I am not here to debate about what exactly happened on that day, the motivation of the protestors, the reporting on the event, whether it should lead to the impeachment or resignation of President Trump, or any other political matter related to the event.   In fact, I will delete any comments made to this post about the event itself.   I am writing about this because, in response to the event, W heaton College in Illinois decided to issue a statement that I reproduce in its entirety below. Concerning the January 6 Attack on the Capitol