12
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4answers
8k views

Why does Jesus tell his mother his “hour has not yet come”?

Very early on, John tells a story that is unique to his gospel: On the third day there was a wedding at Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus also was invited to the wedding ...
12
votes
3answers
7k views

Did Adam and Eve not have sex in the Garden of Eden?

In the first few chapters of Genesis, we see God create Adam and Eve and then tell them to reproduce. Genesis 1:28 (NLT) 28 Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill ...
12
votes
2answers
5k views

Why did Abraham stop at ten in Genesis 18:32?

Genesis 18:16-33 recounts the story, "Abraham Pleads for Sodom" (NIV). When conversing with God, Abraham asks God if He would destroy the city if there were 50 righteous people in it. God replies No, ...
12
votes
4answers
495 views

Is dispensationalism a theological framework or a hermeneutical approach?

I most often hear about dispensationalism in the context of a theological framework wherein God’s relations with man are understood to be divided up into different periods of time, or dispensations, ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

What is “Midrash” and how does it relate to Christian principles of hermeneutics?

What is the Midrash method of interpreting a Biblical verse and what application does it have in Christian studies as a hermeneutic principle?
12
votes
2answers
276 views

Why do English translations sometimes, but not always, transform names instead of just transliterating them?

When translating a text you have to deal with names. While occasionally names are translated "semantically" (according to their meaning), usually we just keep the name as a name -- approximately. ...
12
votes
8answers
13k views

What was Noah thinking when he sent a raven from the ark?

In tablet 11 of the epic of Gilgamesh, after Utnapishtim's ark lodges on a rock, he releases a dove, a swallow, and a raven, in that order. The first two birds return when they fail to find a resting ...
12
votes
6answers
30k views

What is the significance of '14 generations' in Matthew’s account of Jesus's genealogy?

After giving Jesus's genealogy in the first chapter, Matthew goes on to point out the number of generations between significant events: Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to ...
12
votes
3answers
15k views

Jacob's name is Israel. So why is he still called Jacob?

When born, Jacob is given the name "Jacob" meaning, "trickster, supplanter, heel grabber." After he wrestles at Jabbok, he is renamed "Israel" meaning "strives with God." However, after this ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Why does Matthew double people?

Matthew seems to mention two people (or animals) where other Gospels mention just one, e.g. two demon possessed men, in Matthew 8:28-34 (compare Mark 5:1-17 and Luke 8:26-39) two blind men, in ...
12
votes
4answers
9k views

Who are “the least of these my brothers” in Matthew 25?

In Matthew 25:31-46, Jesus teaches that when the Son of Man comes in his glory, he will separate sheep and goats along certain lines, saying: "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of ...
12
votes
6answers
831 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
11k views

Why are the Psalms broken into five books?

The Psalms in most English Bibles are divided into five sections or books: 1-41, 42-72, 73-89, 90-106, and 107-150 Psalms 41, 72, and 89 end with the double amen, while 106 and 150 end with "Praise ...
12
votes
2answers
6k views

Who or what is Rahab in Job?

The most famous Rahab in the Bible is the prostitute of Jericho who hid the two Hebrew spies in Joshua 2. But there seems to be a different Rahab introduced in Job: “God will not turn back his ...
12
votes
7answers
18k 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
2answers
2k views

Hermeneutical Approaches vs. Inductive Bible Study

Inductive Bible Study teaches that you observe, interpret, and then apply scripture, and has lots of specific things you should observe such as word repetitions, structural elements such as ...
12
votes
1answer
318 views

Where, and how, did Josiah die?

The death of Josiah is reported differently in 2 Kings and 2 Chronicles. The Kings account is brief: [WEB] 2 Kings 23 : 29 In his days Pharaoh Necoh king of Egypt went up against the king of ...
12
votes
5answers
5k views

Why “Inn” for “Kataluma” in Luke 2:7

Luke 2:7 translates "kataluma" as "inn". But in Luke 22:11 the same word is used for what seems to be a personal residence: 11 And ye shall say unto the goodman of the house, The Master saith ...
12
votes
1answer
323 views

Quotations in 1 Corinthians 6:13

I've noticed that in the 2011 NIV more of 1 Corinthians 6:13 is considered part of a quotation than in the 1984 version. Obviously Greek did not use quotation marks—so what hints are there for ...
12
votes
1answer
481 views

When is allegorization of scripture productive?

If I were to run into the story of the three little pigs accidentally used as a bookmark in my Bible I might draw these conclusions: Clearly the wolf is the Devil trying to devour sinners who are ...
12
votes
2answers
814 views

How consistent were Augustine's hermeneutics?

St. Augustine of Hippo seems to have had considerable influence on the field of hermeneutics. His work in the field seems to be a bit of a landmark in the history of how hermeneutics is done. However ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Who is Wisdom in Proverbs

Proverbs chapter 8 uses a personification of Wisdom. Some people take this personification as a description of God, or of the Messiah. Is there any textual justification for this?
12
votes
4answers
8k views

What does “Jealous” mean in Exodus 34:14?

Most translations seem to agree that "Jealous" is the best translation for this passage. For example: Exodus 34:14 (NASB) —for you shall not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is ...
12
votes
1answer
184 views

Is ἐγώ εἰμι testified in extra-biblical Greek as an expression for saying “I am he”?

This question arises from this insightful answer to another question about John 8:58. That answer makes an argument that the Greek ἐγώ εἰμι (literally "I am") is the wording used to translate the ...
11
votes
5answers
1k 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 ...
11
votes
6answers
9k views

What are the “household gods” Rachel stole from Laban?

When Jacob flees from Laban, Rachel steals his household gods. When Laban had gone to shear his sheep, Rachel stole her father’s household gods. Genesis 31:19 (NIV) Jacob seems pretty ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Why is Isaiah 14:12-15 interpreted by some to refer to Satan?

Is 14:12 “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, You who weakened the nations! 13 For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

Why was Barabbas in prison?

It seems that there are varying accounts of the problems with Barabbas. John 18:40 Then they all cried again, saying, “Not this Man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber. Another in Mark: ...
11
votes
8answers
3k views

What “is lacking in Christ's afflictions” according to Paul?

In Colossians 1:24, I read: Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church ...
11
votes
3answers
5k views

What is the “fourfold sense of Scripture”?

During the Patristic Period in the Middle Ages practiced an exegetical tactic known as the fourfold sense of Scripture. What are these four senses and do these ideas about the nature of Scripture ...
11
votes
5answers
12k views

Why does Paul get annoyed with the slave girl in Acts 16?

The story in Acts 16 of the demon-possessed slave girl is a curious story to me for many reasons. If it's better to break up my questions into several, I can do so; but for now I'd like to keep them ...
11
votes
3answers
8k views

Did Ruth uncover Boaz' feet, or something else?

Naomi advises Ruth as follows, in Ruth 3: One day Ruth’s mother-in-law Naomi said to her, “My daughter, I must find a home[a] for you, where you will be well provided for. 2 Now Boaz, with whose ...
11
votes
3answers
223 views

Is there any reason to think that Mark 7:19 has a later addition?

This is Mark 7:19 from the NIV: For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.) Every time I see a ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

What does “sit” mean in the scripture “The prostitute who sits on many waters.”

In Revelation 17:1 it is written, One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me,"Come i will show you the punishment of the great prostitute,who sits on many waters. I ...
11
votes
2answers
263 views

How can we determine the author's intent in listing various ages in Genesis?

I believe some of the ages given in Genesis are historical, but am one of many who happens to think the earliest ages might be symbolic (example source). If this were to be the case that leaves us ...
11
votes
3answers
543 views

Does John 7:15 mean Jesus was untaught?

John 7:15 (ESV): The Jews therefore marveled, saying, “How is it that this man has learning,1 when he has never studied?” The footnote is: 7:15 Or this man knows his letters So there ...
11
votes
5answers
7k views

Are the 'ten virgins' told in Jesus' parable multiple brides or just general wedding party?

Jesus told a parable about the kingdom of God involving "ten virgins" and a "bridegroom". It starts out in the beginning of Matthew: Matthew 25:1-2 (ESV) 1 "Then the kingdom of heaven will be ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Who subjected the creation to futility in Rom. 8:20-21?

Paul says that creation was subjected to futility in Romans 8:20-21 ESV: For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Was there some connection between barley bread and Gideon in the mind of the Midianites?

Before attacking the Midianite camp, Gideon does a little spying: When Gideon came, behold, a man was telling a dream to his comrade. And he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream, and behold, a cake of ...
11
votes
3answers
209 views

Matthew originally written in Hebrew?

I recently came across a post which suggested that Mathew was originally written in Hebrew. I had never heard this before... is this a significant scholarly position? If so, what evidence supports it? ...
11
votes
3answers
12k views

What does “Under the Sun” mean in Ecclesiastes?

I noticed that the Teacher uses the phrase "under the sun" more than 20 times in Ecclesiastes. I have always understood this to simply mean "on earth" as The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament ...
11
votes
3answers
252 views

When the Bible says “the world”, does that only include Eurasia and Africa?

I've heard this argument a few different times for different verses. (Unfortunately, I can't remember exactly which verses as that would strengthen this question quite a bit.) However, the argument ...
11
votes
1answer
158 views

How did Aaron avoid Pharaoh?

The famous story of Moses in Exodus 2 shows how, as a baby, he avoided Pharaoh's demand that baby boys be put to death. Maybe it is somewhere in the text and I've missed it, but I'm wondering how ...
11
votes
4answers
5k views

Why pray, “lead us not into temptation”?

Those famous words from The Lord's Prayer, Matthew 6:13: And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. I find puzzling. Why would anyone ask God not to lead is into ...
11
votes
7answers
3k views

Why does Noah curse Canaan?

Genesis 9:23-25 NLT, reads, Then Shem and Japheth took a robe, held it over their shoulders, and backed into the tent to cover their father. As they did this, they looked the other way so they ...
11
votes
1answer
477 views

What is the “Grammatical Historical Approach” to hermeneutics?

BH seems to be divided into several different approaches. What is the Grammatical Historical Approach and what are the primary ways that it differs from other modern approaches?
11
votes
7answers
8k views

Why should an altar be made with uncut stone?

God told Moses that the altar must be made of unhewn stones: And if you make for Me an altar of stones, do not build it of hewn stones; for by wielding your tool upon them you have profaned ...
11
votes
1answer
237 views

Does baptizing come after discipling in Matthew 28:19?

Matthew 28:19 (ESV) reads: Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, In the Greek, (according to Blue ...
11
votes
2answers
8k views

What are the similarities and differences between the Genesis creation account and other creation stories of the time

(Operating under the assumption that Genesis was authored by Moses, and its intent is a polemic against other origin stories and their view of the deity at the time). The Enûma Eliš is said to have ...
11
votes
4answers
6k views

How does Jesus' argument from David and the show bread work?

Jesus defended his disciples gleaning on the Sabbath by retelling a story about David. Mark 2:23-28 (ESV): One Sabbath he was going through the grainfields, and as they made their way, his ...

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