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If Jesus was Non-Violent, Why Did He Tell His Disciples to Buy Swords?

There are a few—and just a few—New Testament passages that people like to use to buttress their argument that Jesus was not really non-violent but in fact at the very least accepted violence in certain circumstances. I don’t know why people feel the need to do so, but they do, so let’s have a look at one of...

If An Evil Person Does a Good Thing, Is It Good or Evil?

“Whoever is not with me is against me.” “Whoever is not against us is for us.” Jesus made both of these statements, and they aren’t different ways of saying the same thing. The first, from Matthew 12:20, restricts the number of people who are for Jesus to those who are with him. If you aren’t specifically...

Plowshares Into Swords, Or Swords Into Plowshares?

What do you do when two verses are in obvious conflict with each other? I’m not talking about apparent conflict or even factual inconsistencies but when one verse uses the exact same words to as another to say the completely opposite thing? As if one is saying, “No, that’s wrong, here’s what is really going...

A Mature Faith is Childlike Not Childish

Mixed messages can be frustrating, especially when they come from the Bible. Take, for instance, when Jesus tells his disciples in Mark 10:15 that they must receive the kingdom of God as a little child. With childlike faith, we say: open, trusting, even innocent. Then Hebrews turns around and upbraids its...

The Wilderness Experience in the Bible

Going through the wilderness is never fun or easy, but it’s sometimes necessary. I’m not talking about camping in the wilds; some people do find that fun. I’m talking about those times when life is precarious, fraught with danger or uncertainty, when you don’t know what to do or who to turn to. When the...

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...

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