Modern Apostles?

New Testament scholar Craig Keener in the following series of posts helpfully answers the question of whether there are true apostles today. Continue reading “Modern Apostles?”

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Paul and Gender

The Apostle Paul is not usually thought of as the champion of women but rather the stodgy advocate of traditional gender stereotypes. Seasoned New Testament scholar Dr. Cynthia Long Westfall in the interview below at OnScript podcast talks about her ground breaking book Paul and Gender: Reclaiming the Apostle’s Vision for Men and Women in Christ, which shows how Paul is much more radical when it comes to gender than we have been led to believe. Continue reading “Paul and Gender”

Divine Identity and Christology

How do we understand the relationship between God and Jesus according to the New Testament? Preeminent New Testament scholar Richard Bauckham has proposed and advocated for nearly two decades that the concept of “divine identity” is the best way to do it. Continue reading “Divine Identity and Christology”

Early Christian Worship

Dr Steven Matthews, University of Minnesota Duluth, as part of his lecture series on the history of Christianity takes us through the influences and structure of worship in early Christianity in the video below. Continue reading “Early Christian Worship”

History, the Bible and rethinking Apologetics

At the beginning of the year, I gave a makeshift review of what I had learnt theologically in the previous year. As I said The Memoirs of God: History Memory and the Experience of the Divine in Ancient Israel by Mark S. Smith, an Old Testament scholar, caused me to rethink the Old Testament and how I thought about the Bible in general. It was the biggest paradigm shift I had experienced in the last few years. The realization was the Bible is not a history text book.

Continue reading “History, the Bible and rethinking Apologetics”

Allegiant Orthodoxy

In a previous post I spoke about how Matthew Bates‘ proposal for allegiance in the New Testament rehabilitates the contemporary meaning of faith for Christians. He argues, and I agree, that “faith” in modern usage as a macro-term no longer captures the full import of the Greek word group “pistis” that it traditionally translates in the New Testament. He suggests “allegiance” better captures the scope of meaning of pistis. Faith in contemporary English has many meanings. However when we narrow them down, there is overlap with a certain meaning of the pistis word group present in the New Testament which is “mental assent.” When it comes to saving pistis (faith as cognitive affirmation of certain truth claims) it is the first step of three towards total enacted allegiance to King Jesus. The subsequent steps, which are also meanings of pistis, are sworn fealty and then embodied loyalty. This three tier proposal for saving allegiance in the New Testament I think can also be applied to help solve the theological problem of how orthodoxy, the creeds and praxis (Christian living) ought to relate to one another.

On the surface the connection is obvious and in many ways it is. However, the difficulties arise when you apply them to real world problems. Continue reading “Allegiant Orthodoxy”

The Meanings of Grace

Grace is everywhere but not everywhere the same.

With insights from anthropology, leading New Testament scholar John M.G. Barclay explores the different meanings of grace in the world of the New Testament. Continue reading “The Meanings of Grace”