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38

It's hard to get inside the minds of people from other cultures, especially when we are separated by time as well as distance. And the main problem here is cultural: We have an expectation of greater precision than ancient people did. The other answers hint at this, but IMO they don't fully appreciate the divide between modern and ancient levels of ...


31

Many different explanations have been proposed. The best article I've read on the subject is The Number Pi in the Bible by Abarim Publications. I'll begin with what I think is the obvious and correct explanation, then mention some other explanations (mentioned e.g. in the article above). 10 ≠ 10.0 (rather, "10" means (10.0 ± 0.5)) 1 Kings 7:23 says ...


22

This is actually part of a theme that runs through prophetic literature: the idea that the people of Israel are doing the ritual right but getting all the important stuff wrong. It is consonant with, for example, in the book of Hosea: For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt-offerings. (Hosea 6.6) Or in ...


19

It is possible that he kept sheep for wool, since after the expulsion from the garden (Gen 3:23) people needed to clothe themselves. (God made clothes for Adam and Chava (3:21), but it doesn't say he continued to do so for everyone else, nor does it say God killed an animal to do so.1) Additionally, as pointed out in comments by Flimsy, sheep and goats ...


15

This apparent contradiction can be resolved without the documentary hypothesis. As Bruce Alderman pointed out, Gen 17 is considered an E passage, yet it uses YHWH in the very first verse. Similarly, there are J passages that use Elohim (the very first J passage actually uses YHWH-Elohim). There are certain patterns in Hebrew thought for when one name ...


15

Who is "she"? To answer your first question, the "she" in verse 15 probably refers back to the she in verse 12 ("she must be silent"). For "she" to refer to Eve would seem like a digression. It's better to think Paul stays on point. What does it mean for her to be "saved through child bearing?" Having read numerous attempts at a reasonable interpretation, ...


13

This text does not call for child sacrifice. Note in the first passage you quote (citation?), it says that the first-born child is to be redeemed, not killed. This is optional for animals (apparently), but not for people. God asserts ownership of first-born, but this does not necessarily mean sacrifice. Numbers 3:12-13 (and later in the chapter) makes ...


12

"Hades" is the Greek word for the realm of the dead. In the Greek Septuagint, it replaces the Hebrew word "Sheol". There's not a lot of description of Hades within the main canon - chiefly the parable in Luke 16 - but generally it is considered the holding place for the souls of the dead until the final judgement. It is sometimes thought to be divided into ...


12

I think lonesomeday has a good answer, but I would like to add another dimension: The festivals and sacrifices being observed in Israel at the time of Amos were also displeasing because they were bound up with idol worship and violated many of the statutes God has given regarding them. The vision Amos receives is written to the people in the day of Jeroboam ...


12

To start with, compare the circle the diameter we're given would make with the circle the circumference we're given would make: Since a circumference is π times the diameter, a 'pure' circle of 10 cubits in diameter as we describe the sea as having would be 10π cubits in circumference, or roughly 31.4 cubits. Now, since the circumference attributed to ...


11

See: 1 Chronicles 21:25: And there was war again with the Philistines; and Elhanan the son of Jair slew Lahmi, the brother of Goliath the Gittite, whose spear staff was like a weaver's beam. Goliath in Samuel 21 is actually Goliath's brother. It could be that the original audience of the Bible understood that the name Goliath could refer to both ...


11

The answer to the who Cain married is likely found in the next chapter: After the birth of Seth, Adam lived 800 years and begot sons and daughters.—Genesis 5:4 (NJPS) In other words, Cain probably married one of his younger sisters. If not, he could have married a niece: a daughter of Seth or one of his other brothers. Of course, that changes ...


10

Offering the eldest, the firtsborn, the firstfruits, etc is all about putting God in the forefront of your life. This is shown clearly in 1 Samuel 1 where Hannah dedicates her firstborn son to the Lord in service: She made a vow and said, "O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your ...


10

This is an attempt to give a brief theological answer, an answer that examines the words in their contexts and in their broader theological context, rather than a lexical investigation. The fool in Psalm 14/53 and in Proverbs is someone who is in moral antithesis to God. This is not an insult or a slur; it is an accurate description of the state of his ...


10

Raca means "empty headed," very similar to how we use "fool" today. Jesus also uses moros in that verse, which is the root of moron. While we normally need to take care not to commit the root fallacy, this one does mean the same thing. The word used in Hebrew is nabal which has more to do with consistently making bad moral choices. Brown, Driver, Briggs ...


10

Short Answer: Yes, it is definitely possible for John's chronology to be reconciled with that of the Synoptics. As the following chart shows, the sequence of Passion events recorded in John is in perfect harmony with the sequence in the Synoptics. When John's terminology is properly understood, it becomes clear that John's chronology does not contradict that ...


10

There is a definite tension in this passage with Exodus 33:20. There are, however, a couple things in this passage that help alleviate some of it. First off, verse 11 notes: "But God did not raise his hand against these leaders of the Israelites." The author goes out of the way to note essentially that the leaders here did not die. That's the kind of ...


9

The first chapter of the Gospel of John seems to contrast with the rest of the book, in style and purpose. John 1:1-18 is different from the rest of the book in the way that a preface is different than the rest of any book. On the other hand, it also has cohesion with the rest of the book the way that a preface has cohesion with the rest of any book. ...


9

I decided to build a canonical answer to this question, since it seemed that all three answers had something to offer. Greek and Hebrew The Hebrew word yare (Strongs H3372) carries a number of meanings. There is both the definition being "terrified" or "afraid" along with the definition of having "reverence", "awe", or "respect". In Greek, the word ...


9

Gesenius in his Hebrew Grammar (Kautzsch/Cowley edition, commonly GKC) spends several pages on "Agreement between Members of a Sentence, especially between Subject and Predicate in respect of Gender and Number." He gives many examples of when the number of the verb and the noun disagree. This is section 145 of the book. In my edition, this is page ...


9

If there is a contradiction at all between Paul's tradition and the tradition of the Gospel writers, it can be resolved as a text critical issue here in 1 Corinthians 11:24. Most of the early manuscripts simply have Τοῦτό μού ἐστιν τὸ σῶμα τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν - "This is my body, which is for you." The short phrase τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν also appears in 2 Corinthians 9:3, ...


9

I Sam 31 is written in the voice of the anonymous narrator. This narrator writes with the authority of prophecy and so his version of events is the version that we should accept as correct - Saul fell on his own sword as did his armorer. The story told by the Amaleki kid in 2 Sam 1:8 is obviously a lie - the kid claims to David that he identified himself to ...


9

Complete order of events: I built my house I had a truck load of plants delivered I built the driveway I planted plants along the driveway and around the house Account of contractor #1: House was built Plants were truckloaded in Driveway was built Account of contractor #2: House was built Driveway was built Plants were planted around the house ...


9

I. Howard Marshall gives a concise statement of the options for harmonization in his commentary: It is quite possible that Matthew or Luke is simply reporting what was commonly said in Jerusalem, and that we are not meant to harmonize the two accounts. If we do try to harmonzie (sic) them, the following possibilities arise: (1). Judas hanged himself ...


9

Hosea Translation Difficulties There are a lot of textual issues that must be dealt with when translating the book of Hosea.1 The textual problems in Hosea are virtually unparalleled in the OT. The Masoretic Text (MT), represented by the Leningrad Codex (c. A.D. 1008), which served as the basis for both BHK and BHS, and the Aleppo Codex (c. A.D. ...


9

Regarding "key differences": When one battles, one has also encountered - no issue. When one engages, one has also met - no issue. When one is said to have been killed "by" a commander of troops, that does not mean one was necessarily killed directly by that commander. It can just as easily have been by the troops that were under his command. For example, ...


8

A detailed study on this issue by Daniel B. Wallace of the Evangelical Theological Society discusses five possibilities: Text-Critical: The text as it stands is incorrect and needs to be emended. Dominical: Jesus himself made a mistake or was intentionally midrashic (i.e., he embellished the OT story to make his point). Source-critical: Mark’s source ...


8

The punishment is "cutting off" or "caret", which is never elucidated in the text and is therefore conventionally understood as referring to a divinely delivered punishment of some severity. The practical consequence of the act, regardless of the punishment, is ritual defilement or disqualification from participating in temple sacrifices (but not from ...


8

Short Answer: Abram did indeed depart from Haran after his father died, as the Old Testament indicates, and as the New Testament explicitly claims. (Terah was 130 years old when Abram was born.) Good question. (This happens to be one of the most commonly asked -- and addressed -- "discrepancies" in Scripture.) The problem is in the modern Western reading ...


8

Could not the Lord have "instigated" the people to spy the land through indirect means, and therefore solve the conundrum? For example, Satan incited David to number the Israelites in a census (1 Chr 21:1), but in 2 Sam 24:1 it is the Lord who is the subject of the Hebrew verb סוּת, and therefore in the immediate grammatical context it was the Lord who had ...



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