7
votes
6answers
548 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
3answers
2k views

To whom does El-Gibbor refer in Isaiah 9?

I've asked about the translation philosophy of the long title in Isaiah 9. This question drills down into one of the phrases: El-Gibbor. According to Wikipedia, there are two basic options: The ...
7
votes
2answers
115 views

Was Jesus 'delivered from his fear' or 'delivered because he had fear' of God?

In Hebrews 5:7 Jesus has his 'prayer heard in what he feared' or 'heard in respect to what he feared' - 'εισακουσθεις απο της ευλαβειας'. The ESV had his prayer was heard 'because of his reverence' ...
7
votes
1answer
321 views

What about the noncanonical books quoted in Jude?

The book of Jude contains many quotes and references to the Old Testament. However, there are two quotes which seem to be from elsewhere. The first is attributed to The Assumption of Moses. Jude ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “invoke the name of the LORD” mean in Genesis?

The phrase "call upon the name of the LORD" turns up occasionally in Genesis: Genesis 12:8 (ESV) 8  From there he moved to the hill country on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

What is the significance of switching from Gideon to Jerubbaal?

Gideon got a new name in this story: When the men of the town rose early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was broken down, and the Asherah beside it was cut down, and the second bull was ...
7
votes
5answers
11k views

What does it mean for someone to be another person's “portion”?

Searching for the word "portion" brings up a lot of results in the Bible. Sometimes it means a portion of food or of money. But what exactly does it mean in the following context: LORD, you alone ...
6
votes
2answers
342 views

Was the tower of Babel a ziggurat?

I've read a couple commentators who depend fairly heavily in their interpretations of the tower of Babel narrative on the assumption that the tower being built was a ziggurat; but I'm not sure how ...
6
votes
2answers
177 views

Was Jesus raised 'for our justification' or 'because of' it?

In the NASB, Romans 4:25 (emphasis mine) reads: He who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification. However, in the ESV (emphasis mine) it ...
6
votes
1answer
305 views

To whom does the anointed refer in 1 Chron 16:22

In 1 Chronicles 16:22 it says: Do not touch My anointed ones, And do My prophets no harm. Link to interlinear English/Hebrew The phrase seem to be a quote pulled from an unknown source, used to ...
6
votes
2answers
199 views

Does Deuteronomy 12:21 reference a missing commandment?

In Deuteronomy 12:21 G-d tells the Jewish people that when they arrive to their homeland and settle into the areas they will be assigned, "[t]hen you may slaughter of your herd and flock...as I have ...
6
votes
2answers
118 views

What options did Mary have in mind with Gabriel's greeting?

When Gabriel visited Mary, she was, as is usual when meeting an angel, troubled by it: In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin ...
6
votes
3answers
680 views

What are the “shields of the earth”?

The end of Psalm 47 reads: God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne. The princes of the peoples gather as the people of the God of Abraham. For the shields of the earth ...
6
votes
2answers
204 views

How does the Genesis account of the Tower of Babel compare with other traditions about the tower?

I'm aware there are number of accounts of the Tower of Babel in Midrash, from the Islamic traditions, Kabalah, Josephus and the Jubilees. For the most part, these accounts seem to derive from ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

What's going on with Saul and the prophets?

After Samuel anointed Saul, he sent him home with a few signs that will be fulfilled in 1st Samuel 10:9-13 (NJPS): As [Saul] turned around to leave Samuel, God gave him another heart; and all ...
6
votes
2answers
966 views

What does Hebrews 6:4-6 mean?

This passage is a bit confusing. Could someone please shed some light on how we are to interpret what Paul is saying here? Hebrews 6:4-6 (NIV) It is impossible for those who have once been ...
6
votes
2answers
472 views

Is 1 Corinthians 11:19 intended as irony?

My question is about the following text: But in the following instructions I do not commend you, because when you come together it is not for the better but for the worse. For, in the first place, ...
6
votes
3answers
774 views

Is Paul suggesting that Philemon release Onesimus from slavery?

The key passage in Philemon 1:15-16 (ESV): For this perhaps is why [Onesimus] was parted from you for a while, that you might have him back forever, no longer as a bondservant but more than a ...
5
votes
1answer
478 views

How does the act of “foot washing” lead to the act of “sexual intercourse”?

In 2 Samuel chapter 11,after King David had slept with Uriah's wife Bathsheba we read in 11:5, The woman conceived and sent word to David,saying,"I am pregnant." David's response to the news ...
5
votes
4answers
848 views

Why is Wisdom personified as a woman?

Regardless of interpretation, I find it intriguing that Proverbs 8:22 mentions how Wisdom was the first created by the LORD (apparently even before mankind). This Wisdom is present as a feminine ...
5
votes
3answers
323 views

Who are the prostitutes in Deuteronomy 23:18?

http://biblehub.com/deuteronomy/23-18.htm You must not bring the earnings of a female prostitute or of a male prostitute into the house of the LORD your God to pay any vow, because the LORD ...
5
votes
3answers
802 views

In John 3:16, is the word believe a continous action for everlasting life?

Is eternal life in John 3:16 conditional on continous belief in Jesus Christ? The word "believe" in this verse is a present participle verb. Thanks very much!
5
votes
2answers
135 views

When James and Jude use κύριος is their meaning limited to “master”?

In his book, The Jesus Dynasty, James Tabor asserts that James and Jude, which he takes to written by Jesus' brothers, use the term κύριος to mean something like "master". It was a sign of honor for ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the meaning of “water and blood” in 1 John 5:6?

In 1 John 5:6 John uses water and blood as symbolic short hand, clearly expecting his audience to know the meaning of these two liquids. 6 This is the one who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ. ...
5
votes
1answer
152 views

How old were the youths mauled by bears?

In 2 Kings 2:23, a group of boys jeers Elisha. Various English translations render this "young boys", "young lads", "boys", "small boys". What kind of range does the Hebrew word behind this group of ...
5
votes
1answer
628 views

Why does John note the name of the servant whose ear was cut off?

Unlike the synoptics, John notes the name of the man whose ear was cut off during Jesus' arrest. John 18:10 - Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant, ...
5
votes
5answers
769 views

Why does Luke associate the birth of Christ with the census conducted by Quirinus?

Luke states that Mary and Joseph went to Bethlehem because of a census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria (2:1-5). In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all ...
5
votes
3answers
295 views

Does Paul counsel against marriage or remarriage in 1 Corinthians 7:27b?

What situation is Paul addressing in 1 Corinthians 7:27b? I think that in view of the present distress it is good for a person to remain as he is. Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free. ...
5
votes
1answer
192 views

Would the Pharisees go to Pilate and secure the tomb on the Sabbath?

This is in relation to another post in which the question was asked why the Sabbath was called "the day after the Day of Preparation." It strikes me odd that Pharisees would be about this sort of ...
5
votes
1answer
221 views

Did Tamar marry a third time, and if so whom?

Genesis 38:26 says: וַיַּכֵּר יְהוּדָה וַיֹּאמֶר צָדְקָה מִמֶּנִּי כִּי עַל כֵּן לֹא נְתַתִּיהָ לְשֵׁלָה בְנִי וְלֹא יָסַף עוֹד לְדַעְתָּהּ: Then Judah recognized [them], and he said, "She is ...
5
votes
1answer
178 views

Literary independence of the synoptics

Which scholars, historical figures, or churches have argued that the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) were all written independently without access to any of the other gospels? What ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What does 'Dominon' mean in Genesis?

"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and ...
5
votes
2answers
167 views

Is Hosea 11:1 referencing the initiation of the Exodus or the sojourn in Egypt?

The New JPS translation of Hosea 11:1 reads: I fell in love with Israel When he was still a child; And I have called [him] My son Ever since Egypt. This seems to indicate that when ...
5
votes
1answer
117 views

Does Romans 13:8 include a prohibition of taking loans?

Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. —Romans 13:8 (ESV) The most immediately obvious exegesis of this verse would be to take it to ...
5
votes
0answers
62 views

Luke 23:43: “I say to you today, you will be with me in paradise” or “I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Comma? “Verily I say unto thee to day, …” or “Verily I say unto thee, to day…” Luke 23:43: “I say to you today, you will be with me ...
5
votes
1answer
602 views

Does Jesus's change in attitude about drinking wine on the cross relate to his statement ‘It is finished’?

Does Jesus's change in attitude about drinking wine on the cross relate to his statement ‘It is finished’? According to some historians, it was a merciful Jewish practice to give to those led to ...
5
votes
4answers
125 views

Silence of the idols and silence of the people before Yahweh in Habakkuk 2:18-20

Habakkuk 2:20 has a powerful sound: But Yahweh is in his holy Temple. Let all the earth be silent before him. I feel there are depths here that I am not plumbing. What is the connection here ...
5
votes
1answer
108 views

Who are the people God sent to deliver Israel in 1 Samuel 12:11?

The NET gives the following information about the list of names found in 1 Samuel 12:11: In the ancient versions there is some confusion with regard to these names, both with regard to the ...
5
votes
1answer
163 views

Do some of the manuscripts have a blank spot in Ephesians 1:1?

The NIV footnotes indicate that some early manuscripts do not have "in Ephesus" in then. The NET has extensive notes on this, but they only state the the earliest and most important MSS "omit" the ...
5
votes
3answers
722 views

Peter's Denial and the Rooster Crowing

In Matthew 26:34, we see Jesus telling Peter that before rooster crows, you will disown me three times: “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown ...
5
votes
2answers
213 views

Is “calling on the name of the Lord” in Acts 9 literal or figurative?

How did Paul fetch out the followers of Jesus in Acts 9? I've always thought that it was simply their practice of calling on the name of the Lord (precisely "Jesus") aloud as the phrase "calling on ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Historically, how was Jonah classified in terms of literary genre?

I've been reading through a lengthy discussion at this site over the historical nature of Jonah. One position that has been advanced is that there are internal text indicators that the narrative is ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Does Paul reject the idea of celebrating holidays in Galatians?

Paul has some very strong words against the Galatians implying that they are returning to their former state: Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not ...
5
votes
1answer
102 views

What restrictions would Paul have been preaching against in Colossians 2?

Colossians 2:20-23 (ESV) 20 If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations— 21 "Do not handle, Do ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

What is an anagogical interpretation and when should it be considered?

First of all, what exactly is an anagogical interpretation? What is a good example of a text that can be understood to be anagoge? Secondly, what textual clues should one look for when considering ...
5
votes
2answers
209 views

Why is “raah” usually translated differently in Amos 3:6 and 9:4

Why is "raah" usually translated differently in Amos 3:6 and 9:4, even in a super-literal translation: 6Is a trumpet blown in a city, And do people not tremble? Is there affliction in a city, And ...
4
votes
3answers
70 views

Jewish Captivity

Is John forgetting the Jewish captivity in Babylon? John 8:33 KJV They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
4
votes
5answers
194 views

How can Jesus say “My Father is working until now” in John 5:16,17 if God rested on the 7th day?

John 5:16,17 (ESV) And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am ...
4
votes
1answer
100 views

Why do the Jews in John 8:33 say that they have never been enslaved?

ESV: 33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?” SBLGNT: 33 ἀπεκρίθησαν πρὸς αὐτόν· Σπέρμα ...
4
votes
1answer
220 views

What is Luke's purpose for recording this narrative and ultimately Jesus' reason to express this account of the rich man and Lazarus to those present?

There are people who understand this text to express Jesus warning the hearers of the potential torment of the lost directly following their death. 1. Explain why that is, or isn't the intended ...

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