10
votes
4answers
4k views

What is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit?

Mark 3:20-30 contains a familiar passage with a long debated phrase: 3:20 Now Jesus went home, and a crowd gathered so that they were not able to eat. 21 When his family heard this they went out ...
10
votes
3answers
16k views

Why was Abishag the Shunammite important?

When we shift from Samuel to Kings, we start with this fairly benign story: King David was now old, advanced in years; and though they covered him with bedclothes, he never felt warm. His ...
10
votes
4answers
4k views

Can we tell from the text who wrote Hebrews?

I have pondered who wrote Hebrews for some time. In my studies, I have eliminated Paul for two reasons. 1) The style of Greek is different than the way Paul writes in his letters. It's a higher ...
9
votes
4answers
911 views

Did Jesus have the legal authority to cleanse the temple?

The narrative of Jesus' cleansing of the temple is present in all four gospels: Mark 11:15-17, Matthew 21:12-13, Luke 19:45-46, John 2:13-17. When He cleanses the temple, there does not seem to be any ...
9
votes
3answers
602 views

Does Peter suggest Jesus “descended into hell”?

1 Peter 3:18-22 (ESV): For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, in ...
8
votes
2answers
472 views

Meaning of the Parable of the Sower

Matthew 13:1-23 recounts the Parable of the Sower. This is one that I've heard a number of times in a number of sermons and books. It must have some ambiguity as it's interpretation by pastors and ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

What does it mean that Jesus was a priest like the “Order of Melchizedek” in Hebrews 7:11?

In Genesis 14 there is a man named Melchizedek. He is not mentioned very much and you might argue that he does not seem very important from this text alone. 17 After Abram returned from defeating ...
7
votes
1answer
411 views

What does Genesis 3:16 literally say?

I've noticed that sometimes words are repeated in the hebrew text. Gen 3:16 אֶֽל־ H413 to הָ·אִשָּׁ֣ה H802 Unto the woman אָמַ֗ר H559 he said הַרְבָּ֤ה H7235 I will greatly אַרְבֶּה֙ H7235 ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Who was the Beloved Disciple?

According to Wikipedia: The Gospel [of John]'s authorship is anonymous. Its Chapter 21 states it derives from the testimony of the 'disciple whom Jesus loved.' Along with Peter, the unnamed ...
6
votes
2answers
230 views

Does Jesus drink wine?

http://biblehub.com/luke/7-34.htm For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here ...
6
votes
1answer
175 views

What language(s) would the Jewish Christians in the various Macedonian cities have spoken?

In Acts 16-18, Paul is shown moving from city to city in Macedonia - e.g. Phillipi, Thessalonica, Berea, Corinth - many of to whom he would later write letters. Acts 17:2 explains that it was his ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Why didn't the Septuagint translate 'ahabah to eros?

Song of Songs 2:7 in English (NPJS) reads: I adjure you, O maidens of Jerusalem, By gazelles or by hinds of the field: Do not wake or rouse Love until it please! As the NET Bible points ...
5
votes
1answer
105 views

Language question in Mark 15:34

In Mark 15:34, why was part of the verse left in the Aramaic language instead of being translated into English? Why, if the rest was translated, does that line remain the same? 15:34 Around three ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

“the first day of the week” in 1 Corinthians 16:2

I heard somewhere that in 1 Corinthians 16:2 Upon the first [day] of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as [God] hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come ...
5
votes
2answers
579 views

Was John the Baptist confused or mistaken about the nature of Jesus' ministry?

John preached a message of imminent judgment: Luke 3:7-9 John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear ...
5
votes
1answer
485 views

Redaction criticism and grammatical-historical hermeneutics

It appears that redaction criticism can be viewed either positively or negatively by proponents of a grammatical-historical hermeneutic (see this article)? What are the primary arguments for and ...
3
votes
4answers
5k views

How and why did Jesus weep?

John 11:35 (the shortest verse in the Bible?) says simply: Jesus wept. How should we understand this? Tearful? Sobbing? What was the nature of his weeping? And what was the reason? Sadness at ...
2
votes
2answers
221 views

How does the rule of non-contradiction differ between Greek logic and Biblical Hermeneutics?

The rule of non-contradiction is key to Greek logic. The Socratic method often walks through a binary tree of false dilemmas [1] until a conclusion is reached. In Hermeneutics contradiction seems to ...
2
votes
1answer
416 views

How many common hermeneutical approaches are there and how do they differ?

How many distinctly different common hermeneutical approaches are there, and what are the major distinctives of each approach? I'm not asking for a long description of each - just a concise summary ...
2
votes
1answer
188 views

How does “Sensus Plenior” differ from Allegory, Gnosticism, Kaballah, and Midrash?

People are divided on hermeneutic approaches. This is probably more true with the introduction of Sensus Plenior to the discussion. It would be helpful to have an explanation of it and how it differs ...
22
votes
4answers
2k views

Is “kill” a valid translation for Exodus 20:13 (Thou shalt not kill)?

Exodus 20:13 (KJV) Thou shalt not kill. Many political statements have been made about this verse. This translation has been used by many to support their pacifist desires. However, it seems ...
15
votes
2answers
170 views

How does a Bible translator know if it is a poem?

Let's take 1 Tim 3:16 as an example among many others, where Paul wrote or quoted (ESV): Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

What is Sensus Plenior and how does it impact the field of hermeneutics?

What is the Sensus Plenior view of Scripture? Without trying to resolve it's ultimate validity or not, what significant implications does the idea hold for Biblical hermeneutics in theory and ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Does Genesis's creation account depict creation “ex nihilo”?

I had once heard that one of the remarkable thing about the creation account in Genesis, as compared to the other creation accounts of the cultures of the surrounding area is that God creates the ...
12
votes
7answers
13k views

What is the significance of 153 fish?

John 21:11 Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. Is there any significance to the number 153? Or ...
12
votes
6answers
704 views

How should we understand the “Cleansing of the Temple”?

As a preface, I was talking with some good friends last night and this passage came up. On of my friends contributed an interpretation that made my blood boil. He was clearly wrong and clearly ...
11
votes
2answers
268 views

Why isn't there a taxonomic distinction between clean and unclean birds?

Leviticus 11:13-19 has a list of non-kosher birds that match a list in Deuteronomy 14:11-18 (NJPS): You may eat any clean bird. The following you may not eat: the eagle, the vulture, and the black ...
11
votes
2answers
263 views

Did Jephthah have pets?

Judges 11:29-40 tells the story of Jephthah's victory over the Ammonites. Before the battle he promises, "whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is Leviticus 12 saying that giving birth to a child is a sin?

I was reading Leviticus and saw that a woman, after she gives birth, would be unclean. Leviticus 12:1-2 (NIV) 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Say to the Israelites: ‘A woman who becomes pregnant ...
10
votes
2answers
871 views

What is the textual evidence for defining “μισέω” as “reject”?

I have heard that μισέω does not necessarily mean hate in the sense of a wrathful detestation, but can also have a judicial sense, i.e. reject. A classic example where this meaning would be applied is ...
10
votes
3answers
9k views

Why did the witnesses lay their coats at Paul's feet?

During the stoning of Stephen, according to the book of Acts, "the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul," who later converted to Christianity and took the name Paul. ...
9
votes
2answers
832 views

Was Abiathar the son of Ahimelech or was Ahimelech the son of Abiathar?

According to the following three verses, Abiathar was the son of Ahimelech: 1 Samuel 22:20. 1 Samuel 23:6. 1 Samuel 30:7. But a couple other passages down the road claim that in fact Ahimelech ...
9
votes
3answers
174 views

How many animals is the King of Zion to ride according to Zechariah?

I've read that Zechariah prophesied that the King of Zion would enter the city on a donkey with another donkey in tow. But the passage seems to indicate just one animal to me: Rejoice greatly, O ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

Is Deuteronomy 22:28 talking about rape?

Some folks assert that this passage describes the Torah's sole punishment for rape: If a man comes upon a virgin who is not engaged and he seizes her and lies with her, and they are discovered, ...
9
votes
5answers
995 views

Does Paul refer to his past or present evil/sin in Romans 7

In Romans 7:19, Paul says this: For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. ESV Is Paul talking about "doing evil" in his present, converted state, or ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

What did Jesus mean by “be perfect” in the Sermon on the Mount?

I asked this on the Christianity Stack Exchange site, and they told me it would be better here. So I here I am asking it... Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is ...
8
votes
1answer
194 views

How should Psalm 22:16 read?

Psalm 22:16 seems textually quite difficult. The NET for example reads: Yes, wild dogs surround me – a gang of evil men crowd around me; like a lion they pin my hands and feet. Yet, they note that ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Does Jesus always use the mustard seed to signify the property of “smallness”?

In Luke, we read: The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and ...
8
votes
2answers
884 views

Cutting body and pagan tattoos forbidden in Leviticus 19, what pagan group?

There is a curious law in Leviticus that seems to refer to avoiding an ancient pagan rite. Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the Lord. (Leviticus 19:28 ...
8
votes
1answer
402 views

Does Luke's supposed profession matter when interpreting his work as an author?

Paul makes reference to a physician named Luke: Luke the beloved physician greets you, as does Demas.—Colossians 4:14 (ESV) Tradition also assigns Luke as author of the gospel that bears ...
8
votes
2answers
815 views

Why did David and Jonathan need the arrow signal?

Just before David left Saul's service for the last time, he and Jonathan arraigned a way to communicate with one another in code: Jonathan, out of his love for David, adjured him again, for he ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Can we harmonize the two meetings of David and Saul?

My daily reading reached the moment when Samuel anointed David, which is followed immediately by the first meeting of Saul and David: Now the spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What does “guardian/tutor” mean in Galatians 3:24

Galatians 3:24 reads in the ESV (and several modern translations) So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith.ESV In the KJV it reads: ...
7
votes
3answers
86 views

In Rev 19:16, why is the Name on the Word's thigh and robe?

The fact that the Name is on the Robe makes sense, because that's where the High Priest wore the Breastplate with the 12 Jewels and the Urim and Thummim; and the 12 Jewels are an echo and elaboration ...
7
votes
3answers
258 views

How to save Paul from the Galatians 3 “seed” vs “seeds” argument blunder?

Galatians 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. How does one rescue Paul from the ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Explanation of Chronological Disparities between St. John and the Synoptic Gospels Concerning Jesus' Passion

Significant chronological disparities exist between St. John's telling of the life and death of Jesus and those of the synoptic gospels. For instance, St. John discusses a lot of Jesus' ministry, ...
7
votes
6answers
614 views

Are there any rules on which things in Revelation must be interpreted literally and which symbolically?

Are there any rules on which things in Revelation must be interpreted literally and which symbolically? The one that comes from the back of my mind is that if a certain thing or a character is already ...
7
votes
2answers
540 views

What is the argument against the authenticity of 1 John 5:7-8 in the KJV?

I was reading through Lee Strobel's The Case for the Real Jesus and came across a passage in the book that indicates the inauthenticity of 1 John 5:7-8 in the King James Version: 1 John 5:7-8 ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Why are 2 Peter and Jude usually together in commentaries?

It seems pretty standard for commentaries to be written on the combination of 2 Peter and Jude. Obviously they both share the subject matter of false teachers, but I assume there are reasons beyond ...
7
votes
1answer
298 views

How many and who were the people the women found at Jesus' tomb?

In the empty tomb stories, somebody was already there when the women arrived. But how many people and who were they? For reference: Mark: a young man Matthew: an angel of the Lord Luke: two men ...

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