The Bible is filled with women who were prostitutes, adulteresses, or downright sexually promiscuous. It’s striking, however, that a large majority of them are depicted as objects of grace rather than judgment. As much as the Bible condemns fornication, it also offers the solution to it: grace. That relentless, unconditional,...

Kill Them All

The Old Testament is filled with various ethical dilemmas, but perhaps the most complex one is Joshua’s conquest of Canaan. God’s command to kill all the Canaanites—men, women, and children—has led Richard Dawkins, an atheistic philosopher, to state The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character...
Despite what is ubiquitously portrayed in nativity scenes, Christian folklore, and every English translation that I’m aware of, there’s a good chance that Jesus’ parents never visited an inn in Bethlehem to give birth to the Christ-child. Here are three reasons why. First, Bethlehem was a very small rural village at...
I’ve been on a short hiatus from blogging about homosexuality and the Bible (producing joy in some readers, and protest in others). Thanksgiving, finals’ week, and setting up the Christmas tree prevented me from finishing our discussion. Since the tree is up and I’ve almost digested all that turkey,...
The prophetic books of the Old Testament can be tricky. But these are important books, so it’s important that we understand how to read them well. Old Testament prophecy is not what we tend to think it is. Duvall & Hays summarize some surprising facts about the Old Testament prophetic...
Yesterday I explained how we know that the Old Testament is God’s word and why the New Testament ought to be considered Scripture, on the same level as the Old Testament. Today I’m going to continue that story and explain how the Bible came to take on its current...
A stereotypical fairytale begins with the words, “Once upon a time.” When we hear these words, something triggers in our brains that tells us, “Oh, okay, so this never really happened.” But the phrase itself would indicate otherwise. Once upon a time actually suggests that this event took place...
Sin touches everything around us. And as bad as that is, the problem is worse than sin being everywhere. Sin is not just “out there.” Sin runs through each of us. Everything we see “out there” is stained by sin. But even the eyes through which we see the world...
And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there,...
The Old Testament Law can be a very difficult section of Scripture for modern readers. For one thing, it’s tedious (a less friendly word would be boring). Commands are often listed one after another for chapters at a time. And seriously, how long can you stay focused when reading...
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