Male Headship and Mutual S...

4th in a series of posts on a dynamic vs. static view of Scripture. See Parts One,Two, and Three. Nowhere is the difference between the static and the dynamic views of the Bible more evident than in the ongoing evangelical debate regarding roles in marriage. The traditional view, called the Complementarian view, sees the roles as tied to gender and fixed in Scripture. In its most rigid form, the husband...

How to Heal a Human Heart

When my children were young, I made them do things, or prevented them from doing things. It was great if they wanted to do the things they had to do, but it really didn’t matter. If I decided they needed to do something, I made them do it. If they didn’t, there were consequences. I tried not to be bossy. I’d ask them nicely, and if they didn’t want to do it, I’d try to persuade them. But if they still...

The Unstuck Bible: Recogni...

In the last post I observed that there are places in the Bible where God is capricious and volatile, acting in a way that is inconsistent with One who is described as “merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” Not that he merely appears to be these things, but that he is clearly acting in such a mercurial fashion. This is how, in these places, the Bible is...

Why Does God Sometimes Act...

If God never changes, then why does he seem so different in the New Testament than the Old? Everyone sees it. Readers new to the Bible are disturbed by it. Experienced Bible readers develop reasoned explanations for it which seem sound in general but which tend to become strained when looking at specific texts. I’m talking, first and foremost, about the wrathful, vengeful God of the Old Testament vs. the...

The Testament That Comes A...

By the time of Jesus, the Old Testament was closed, i.e. it was determined that nothing new would be included in the sacred writings of the Hebrews. The Torah was five books, not six; Moses was dead, so how could there be more anyway? Besides, five is all that is needed, they said. Psalms? There are a hundred and fifty to choose from, that’s more than sufficient. If they sang three each Sabbath, it’d be...

Why You Should Stop Readin...

You should stop reading the New Testament. Just stop it. Not forever, mind you. Just for a while. Just long enough to read the Old Testament. Several times. Then you can go back and read the New Testament, and when you do you’ll find that it makes a whole lot more sense. You’ll find that some things that previously were head-scratchers now are clear. You’ll find you really just have a surface level...

A Perfect Brutality

My dad was pretty hard on me growing up. No matter what I did, he wanted me to do it better, especially in school. If I got a B on a test, he wanted me to get an A, and told me so. If I brought home an A, he wanted an A+. If I answered 49 out of 50 questions correctly and got an A+, he’d want to know why I missed that one question. And if I got a 100, that was just proof that I could do it and he’d expect...
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