Believing the Bible is “Literal” is Irrelevant. Actually Reading it Makes All the Difference.

A lot of people say they believe the Bible should be read “literally.” Whatever that means. Not everybody reads the Bible literally. What is significant is not whether you or not you believe the Bible should be read literally. It’s whether you actually read it. Actually reading the Bible is...

How Historical is the Bible?

Excavations of ancient Capernaum on the Sea of Galilee The Bible is not all history, but all the Bible is history. That first phrase is pretty much straightforward. The Bible is composed of much more than straight history—what happened, when, by whom, etc. It contains poetry, parables, prophetic...

I’m A Viking! (Sorta)

For my birthday in August Pam bought me one of those DNA tests where you can learn about your heritage by mailing in some spit. I’m not sure she’s as interested in my heritage as wondering, after 37 years of marriage, if there is some genetic mutation that would explain me to her. I have a friend who sent...

Blaming Foreigners is not New. Or True.

It was the foreigners, they said. They’re to blame. At the time of Jesus the Jews had been blaming foreigners for their own idolatry, and they had been doing it for over four hundred years. So long that it was just accepted wisdom. It’s a familiar narrative, derived for the most part from the Chronicler’s...

Getting Past Perfect

A couple of years ago I surprised Pam by taking her to one of those do-it-yourself painting studios. This particular session was “Paint Your Pet” I had emailed them a couple of pictures of our beagle Kobi, which they sketched in pencil on a canvas. The instructors showed us how to mix the acrylic paints to...

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