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What did Jesus likely say in John 8:58?

See also the follow-up Q&A to this one on the Greek antecedents of the absolute use of ἐγὼ εἰμί in the New Testament which advances and nuances the discussion below. The Question This is an ...
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19 votes

Moses' manufacture of the "bronze serpent" - what bronze?

The (relatively) small amount of bronze needed to make that serpent/snake (or נְחַשׁ נְחֹשֶׁת nĕḥaš nĕḥōšet) in the story of Num 21:4-9,1 even if it was as large as the monument now on Mount Nebo in ...
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14 votes
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Same term used for Noah's ark and Moses's basket

The Hebrew word תֵּבָה (tebah) occurs 28 times in the OT and simply means (literally), chest, box, coffin, etc. That is, a box-like container used to house and protect some contents that are (by ...
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13 votes
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Is there any evidence that 'knei bosem' is cannabis or ganja?

Is there any evidence that this phrase should be translated 'ganja'? No. Exodus 30:23 (ESV) reads: Take the finest spices: of liquid myrrh 500 shekels, and of sweet-smelling cinnamon half as ...
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13 votes

Why did God specifically target the firstborn in the 10th plague (Exodus 12:29-36)?

The symbolism of the death of the firstborn is explained at the very beginning as corresponding to Israel being God's firstborn son. Pharaoh refused to release God's firstborn son, therefore Pharaoh's ...
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12 votes
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Does the definite article 'the', occur in front of the name of God in the Hebrew language?

The Tetragram in Hebrew is a proper name, and names do not have articles in Hebrew any more than they do in English. The article "the" arises in OP's KJV example because of the convention (beginning ...
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12 votes
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How did they keep warm on the Sabbath day?

It says "Don't kindle a fire," not "don't allow a fire to be burning." The prohibition is on the act of lighting a fire, not of having a fire be lit. Having a fire burning to ...
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11 votes
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Did Moses have a second wife?

This is a question that has caused problems with commentators and interpreters for centuries. Speaking most strictly, Cush and Midia are not the same place. Midia was on the Arabian peninsula (in the ...
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11 votes

Why was crocodile (תנין) from Exodus 7:10 translated as snake or serpent?

It should not be assumed that since the modern Hebrew word for "crocodile" is tannin that the word meant the same thing in the time of Biblical Hebrew. Sometimes lingual shifts are minor, but other ...
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11 votes

If God is no respecter of persons, how to explain Exodus 11:7?

When it is written that “God is not a respecter of persons,”1 it means that salvation is for all who believe, whether Jew or Gentile,2 hence Jude refers to it as “the common salvation.”3 However, the ...
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10 votes
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In Exodus 32:20, why did Moses make the Israelites drink the ground calf & water mixture?

There are several major lines of interpretation: A number of commentators over the years1 have made a connection between this incident and the provision in Numbers 5:11-31, wherein a woman suspected ...
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10 votes

Did Pharaoh drown with his army? Exodus 14

There's a subtle shift in how the narrative refers to Pharaoh and the army part way through the account. We can see the first method in the first question: Q: Does the Pharaoh actually leave with the ...
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10 votes
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Is Jesus against or in favor of the law of retaliation ("eye for eye, tooth for tooth")?

"Now these are the judgments which thou shalt set before them." (Ex. 21:1, KJV) The opening statement of the chapter sets the context within court proceedings, ie. judgment. So, the ...
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9 votes

Why does Exodus 3 refer to "the angel of the LORD"?

Frequently, an "Angel of the LORD" will appear in passages throughout the Bible to bring a message to an individual. In these instances, the speech used is always that of God himself. Tradition held ...
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9 votes
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What does "before me" in Exodus 20:3 mean?

Exodus 20:3 לֹֽ֣א יִהְיֶֽה־ לְךָ֛֩ אֱלֹהִ֥֨ים אֲחֵרִ֖֜ים עַל־ פָּנָֽ֗יַ* Literally: Not|shall-you-have|to-yourselves|gods|other|before|the-face-[of-me] Thus, Thou shalt not have other gods ...
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9 votes

Did God command the making of graven images, in Exodus and Numbers?

No, God did not contradict Himself, since He never forbade all kinds of images to begin with, that, going on to command images to be made, He could be said to contradict Himself. Something is always ...
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9 votes
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Why does Deuteronomy 29:5-6 say they ate no bread for forty years?

The manna is called לֶחֶם, which can mean bread, but also refers to any meal: for example, the daily sacrifice of meat is also לֶחֶם (Numbers 28:2). So when the manna is called לֶחֶם (Exodus 16:4, etc....
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9 votes

Is the 9th commandment the same as "You shall not lie"?

Although there can be an overlapping of sins with these two matters, they are stated distinctly in Exodus 20 for good reason. Here is a breakdown of the 8th commandment, ‘Thou shalt not steal’: ...
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9 votes

At John 5:18, did Jesus break the Sabbath?

The Pharisees had rules that were much stricter than God's rules. They interpreted "work" to include almost every physical activity. Even today, orthodox Jews consider turning on a light ...
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8 votes

The Ten Commandments were based on the Code of Hammurabi?

I don't know of any scholar who denies that Hammurabi wrote a code of laws before Moses received the Ten Commandments and the accompanying law. So if the question is: Did Moses invent the idea of ...
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8 votes

What did Jesus likely say in John 8:58?

Professor of Religious Studies , Jason David BeDuhn of Northern Arizona University in his book "TRUTH IN TRANSLATION Accuracy and Bias of the New Testament" compares ten major English ...
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8 votes
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Exo. 4:16 - "And you shall be to him for [an] elohim" (וְאַתָּה תִּהְיֶה לֹּו לֵאלֹהִים)

Of course, אֱלֹהִים ʾĕlōhîm has a much broader semantic range than YHWH, as implied by the way the question is framed. They are by no means synonymous. The entry in Brown-Driver-Briggs lists a number ...
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8 votes
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If the Exodus and conquest of Canaan took place around 1446 BC, why are there so many references to iron in that period's writing?

The iron age does not refer to the invention of iron smelting. As Wikipedia says: It is defined by archaeological convention, and the mere presence of cast or wrought iron is not sufficient to ...
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8 votes

What deity was Reuel a priest of?

It was to Midian that Moses fled after slaying an Egyptian and where he married Zipporah the daughter of Jethro—also known as Reuel (Exod 2:11-22). Some speculate that worship of Yahweh originated in ...
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8 votes

Has anyone seen God or not?

Can God make a rock so big that even He can't lift it? God is generally held to be omnipotent, and there's a classical logical paradox involving that omnipotence: can God make a rock so big even He ...
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8 votes
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What was the pillar of fire and cloud?

Yes, the pillar was BOTH cloud and fire on that occasion, as the earlier verses in chapter 14 explain. And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I have gotten me honor upon Pharaoh, upon ...
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