12
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4answers
3k 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
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9answers
837 views

In Genesis 2:24, how do a husband and wife “become one flesh”?

In Gen. 2:24, it is written, 24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. KJV, 1769 כד עַל־כֵּן֙ יַֽעֲזָב־אִ֔ישׁ אֶת־...
12
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1answer
252 views

How should we understand David’s name at the beginning of the Psalms?

Many† of the Psalms begin with some variation of: מִזְמ֥וֹר לְדָוִ֑ד LXX: Ψαλμὸς τῷ Δαυιδ ESV: A psalm of David However, as mentioned in Part (2) of this answer about Psalm 72:20, the ...
12
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2answers
410 views

Are there two distinct words [‘lexemes’] for ‘fish’ in Jonah 2?

Jonah 2:1 (Eng. 1:17) says that God appointed דָּ֣ג גָּד֔וֹל (dāg gādôl, 'a great fish') to swallow Jonah. The following verse tells of Jonah crying out from the belly of הַדָּגָֽה (haddāgâ, 'the fish’...
12
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1answer
5k views

What is the oldest existing copy of Genesis?

This answer What are the oldest surviving manuscripts of the scriptures? mentions the Nash Papyrus which doesn't contain Genesis and the Codex Sinaiticus which does (but that's more than just Genesis)....
12
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3answers
9k views

Was the text of Matthew 28:19 changed?

Scholars such as F. C. Conybeare1 have claimed that the Trinitarian baptismal formula of Matthew 28:19 was not original to the text of Matthew. Matt 28:19 (NIV) 19 Therefore go and make ...
12
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2answers
16k views

How old was Samuel when Hannah took him to the temple?

In 1 Samuel 1:24 we read: After he was weaned, she took the boy with her, young as he was, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of ...
12
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9answers
21k views

Why did Paul collect and deliver an offering for the Jerusalem church?

Paul's collection for the Jerusalem church occupies significant portions of his letters (1 Cor 16:1–4; 2 Cor 8:1–9:15; Rom 15:14–32). It is so important to Paul he is willing to face hostility (...
12
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5answers
16k views

Why is the blind man in John 9 sent to the pool that means “sent”?

In John 9, Jesus performs the miracle of healing the blind man in a rather unorthodox manner. He first creates some mud or clay out of the dirt and his saliva, then he "anoints" the man's eyes, and ...
12
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4answers
115k views

What is the meaning of “poor in spirit” in Matthew 5:3

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. - KJV Matthew 5:3 How can the "poor in spirit" get the kingdom of heaven? Is there a similar usage else where?
12
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2answers
1k views

What is the evidence for the existence of the Q document?

According to most scholars, Mark was the first of the four gospels to be written. Matthew and Luke then relied upon Mark and a second written source called Q. What is the evidence for the existence of ...
12
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3answers
448 views

Where does the “slippery slope” of allegorical interpretations start?

Besides the Grammatical Historical Approach to hermeneutics, various allegorical or metaphorical approaches exist. It seems to me that if you approach a text with the assumption that the whole thing ...
12
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4answers
2k views

“Overcome” vs “comprehend” in John 1:5

John 1:5 reads in the ESV: The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. I recently heard the KJV quoted and was struck by the difference: And the light shineth in ...
12
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1answer
242 views

Statistically, how similar is the NIV to other translations such as the RSV?

In "The advantages of the ESV" by Wayne Grudem, he states that the 2001 edition of the ESV is "92% RSV, 8% modified, or 60,000 words" (from the RSV): This sounds like strong confirmation of the ...
12
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2answers
3k views

What was the lesson Elisha wanted to teach Joash using the arrows?

In 2 Kings 13:14-17 we find that, Joash - the king of Israel, took a bow and some arrows as Elisha told him. And the 17th verse: Elisha said, “Open the east window,” and he did so. Elisha said, “...
12
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2answers
494 views

Different meanings of 'Earth' in Genesis 1

The word הארץ ('the earth') appears a very large number of times in the six-day creation account spanning Genesis 1:1 to 2:1. It seems clear to me that the usages in 1:1 and 2:1 are special - the ...
12
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3answers
707 views

“blashemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven” — Is “forgiven” the best word for what is meant?

Matthew 12:30-32: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters. And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the ...
12
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2answers
591 views

What is the “systematic typology” hermeneutic method and how does it work?

There's a hermeneutic method that's been used on this site called "systematic typology". What is it? How does one apply it? Are there contexts where it is considered to be a particularly good or ...
12
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5answers
8k 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
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2answers
13k views

Does Jesus show compassion to demons in Mark 5:12-13

Mark 5:12-13 recounts how Jesus allowed the 'legion' to enter a herd of pigs after hearing their pleas. Is this a case of Jesus showing compassion to demons? If not, what is Mark trying to communicate ...
12
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2answers
1k 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
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2answers
1k views

What is a Horizon of Understanding and how can it be applied to understanding the Bible?

Hans-Georg Gadamer uses Horizons of Understanding as a model for communication, and the concept of fusion of horizons is sometimes put forth as a way of explaining how one can approach a "text", but ...
12
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3answers
443 views

Can αδελφοί refer to cousins?

Matthew 13:55-56a (ESV) Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? ...
12
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1answer
397 views

“dancing” or “beat time with his feet” in 2 Samuel 6:14?

Frank Garlock says in his The Language of Music that 2 Samuel 6:14: Enthusiasts of contemporary Christian music and Christian Rock sometimes cite the Old Testament scripture where David led the ...
12
votes
1answer
731 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
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3answers
24k views

Why did the tabernacle use the colors blue, purple and scarlet?

I see a lot of blue in the tabernacle, and when moving it. For example: Then they are to cover the curtain with a durable leather, spread a cloth of solid blue over that and put the poles in place....
12
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3answers
1k views

What types of birth were meant by 'blood', 'will of the flesh', and 'will of man'?

John mentions three specific types of birth that are not the avenue through which we may become children of God. To what types of births did each of these three things refer? John 1:12-13 (ESV) ...
12
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2answers
1k views

What does “justify” (δικαιόω) mean in James 2:24, Romans 3:28?

James 2:24 says: You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. Romans 3:28 says: For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law. What are ...
12
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4answers
4k 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
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3answers
6k views

How many daughters did Lot have, two or four?

When we read the KJV we get the impression that Lot possibly had daughters living with their husbands in Sodom, in addition to two unmarried daughters still living at home: "And Lot went out, and ...
12
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5answers
8k views

What is the “Water” of Genesis 1:2?

We read in the creation account: The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.—Genesis 1:2 (...
12
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7answers
2k 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
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2answers
695 views

The significance of the designations of families who will mourn in Zechariah 12

As the prophet Zechariah proclaims the greatness of Jerusalem's mourning, he says: 12“All Israel will mourn, each clan by itself, and with the husbands separate from their wives. The clan of David ...
12
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6answers
12k views

What was meant by “paradise” when Jesus spoke to the thief on the cross?

As he was crucified, Jesus engaged in a conversation with one of the other thieves hung along side him. at the end is this pronouncement: Luke 23:43 (ESV) 43 And he said to him, "Truly, I say to ...
12
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2answers
3k views

Who is the woman in Revelation 12?

She is introduced: A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head.—Revelation 12:1 (NIV) Who is the ...
12
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2answers
445 views

Who believes, is baptized, and is saved in Acts 16?

Acts 16 tells two accounts of Philippians being saved under the preaching of Paul. First is a woman named Lydia: One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of ...
12
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2answers
2k views

How can I identify puns in the Hebrew Bible?

The Bible sometimes uses words with multiple meanings to the effect of an intentional pun or wordplay. Punning seems especially common in Hebrew. I think that being aware of these literary devices ...
12
votes
3answers
7k views

Did King Hezekiah do something wrong in showing off his wealth to emissaries from Babylonia in II Kings 20?

The Hezekiah (Heb: Chizkiyahu) narrative in II Kings (chapters 17 – 20) and Isaiah (36 – 39) concludes on a dissonant and haunting confrontation between King Hezekiah and the prophet Isaiah. Hezekiah ...
12
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1answer
526 views

Why was, “for they were Ishmaelites” considered an explanation for why the Midianites had golden earrings in Judges 8:24?

Gideon's Ephod Then the men of Israel said to Gideon, “Rule over us, you and your son and your grandson also, for you have saved us from the hand of Midian.” Gideon said to them, “I will not ...
12
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1answer
1k views

What does John 20:31 tell us about the intended audience of John’s gospel?

John 20:31 SBLGNT: ταῦτα δὲ γέγραπται ἵνα πιστεύητε [var. πιστεύσητε]1 ὅτι Ἰησοῦς ἐστιν ὁ χριστὸς ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ θεοῦ, καὶ ἵνα πιστεύοντες ζωὴν ἔχητε ἐν τῷ ὀνόματι αὐτοῦ. ESV: but these are ...
12
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2answers
8k views

What does “being salted with fire” mean in Mark 9:49?

For every one shall be salted with fire, and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt (Mark 9:49) What does it mean to be salted with fire?! It looks from this verse like one can be salted in one ...
12
votes
1answer
1k views

Why did God “change His mind” with Balaam?

There are so many interesting questions regarding the account of Balaam in Numbers 22-24. But for now, let me focus on the one that is most puzzling to me: Why did the Lord seem to "waffle" in His ...
12
votes
1answer
3k views

The meaning of “stranger and sojourner” in Genesis 23:4 and Leviticus 25:23

In Genesis 23:4 Abraham is in conversation with the residents of Heth and says: "I am a stranger and a sojourner with you. Give me a possession for a burying place with you, that I may bury my ...
12
votes
1answer
136 views

Why is there an “extra” verse at the end of Psalms 25 and 34?

As far as I can tell, all of the acrostic Psalms (9-10, 25, 34, 37, 111, 112, 119, 145) end appropriately after taw, although many of them are missing various letters.* Psalms 25 and 34 both have an "...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Jesus and the adulterous woman: was stoning a practical possiblity?

In John 8:5, the Pharisees ask Jesus: In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say? (NIV) Was stoning a woman for adultery often/sometimes done during Jesus' days, or ...
12
votes
5answers
7k views

Is Satan one of the “sons of God”?

In the framing story of Job, we read about הַשָּׂטָן (ha-Satan) and בְּנֵי הָאֱלֹהִים (ben 'elohiym) appearing before God: Now it fell upon a day, that the sons of God came to present themselves ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Are bats described as birds?

Leviticus 11:13,19 reads: And these you shall detest among the birds . . . the eagle, the bearded vulture, the black vulture . . . and the bat. (ESV translation) Does the bible describe bats as ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Who incited David to take a census and what's wrong with taking a census anyway?

According to 2 Samuel 24:1 (NRSV) Again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he incited David against them, saying, "Go, count the people of Israel and Judah." But according to ...
11
votes
3answers
496 views

Based on recent manuscript discoveries, is the LXX more reliable than the MT?

Based on recent manuscript discoveries such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, is the text of the LXX more reliable than the MT?
11
votes
3answers
11k views

Comparison of English word “fool” in original Hebrew and Greek

Question is based on this comment on Christiantity SE. In the OT, the word fool is apparently used to describe atheists: The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” Psalm 14:1 and Psalm 53:...

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