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29 votes

Was the text of Matthew 28:19 changed?

The position in the question, that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is not original to Matthew 28:19 is held today by very few scholars. Those that do point to a quotation from the early church historian ...
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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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17 votes
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John 8:57 and the age of Jesus, before his crucifixion

The Phrasing is Not a Direct Comment on Jesus being over 40 Years Old Irenaeus is in error with his logic here, partly because he is missing the context and particular significance of the statement. ...
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15 votes

Did Jesus call God YHWH?

No. The tetragrammaton was not used in Jesus' time. Faithful Jews would avoid saying it so as to not transgress the third commandment. The most common circumlocution was "Lord" (Andonai in Hebrew or ...
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15 votes
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What did 'adoption' mean to the Romans?

The question of how "adoption" as used metaphorically by Paul relates to modern notions of adoption is not as important as comparing it to other ancient understandings. Once this is in place, however, ...
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15 votes
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What evidence is used to support the claim that Isaiah was written before the reign of King Cyrus?

Prima Facie evidence The primary evidence is that the text claims to have been written by Isaiah the son of Amoz, and that his career spanned portions of the reigns of Kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and ...
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14 votes
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How credible is the theory that Enki and Ninhursag influenced Genesis 2 and 3?

This theory is pretty credible. There a great deal of scholars which entertain this idea who are collectively known as Panbabylonists. This seems to raise the ire of many purists who would like to ...
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14 votes

Was Potiphar, being a captain of an Egyptian guard, likely a eunuch?

I regret that I do not have access to the article by Johnston, but I understand his gist from Susan’s answer. First of all, the argument that “research has failed to turn up any evidence for the use ...
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13 votes
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Was Potiphar, being a captain of an Egyptian guard, likely a eunuch?

The word used to describe Potiphar's relationship with Pharaoh (37:36, 39:1) is sārı̂s, which is indeed commonly glossed "eunuch" (e.g. BDB; cf. LXX εὐνοῦχος). However, to my knowledge no major ...
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12 votes

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

There are several creation accounts in antiquity from two main areas in the fertile crescent; Babylon/Sumer and Egypt. I will attempt to summarize and compare/contrast points of each creation myth ...
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12 votes

Where, and how, did Josiah die?

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, ...
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11 votes
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What was the lesson Elisha wanted to teach Joash using the arrows?

Before anything, though, I must say that no, king Joash would not know that he must strike the ground five or six times. But, he really should have did that. All verse emphasis mine. First of all, we ...
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11 votes
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Has the lengthened day of Joshua 10 been modeled in a simulation to show how this could have occurred?

The short answer is that, no, despite a persistent urban legend that NASA modeled this on one of their early computer systems, the reality is that such a simulation is impossible. According to Dr. ...
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10 votes
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Ancient Hebrew Calendar(s) and Modern Translations of "Years"

The ancient Hebrews used a lunar calendar; each month began with the sighting of the new crescent, and continued until the next sighting, which means that approximately half of the months had 29 days, ...
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10 votes
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To whom was the letter 1 John written?

In the Introduction to 1 John in the NIV Study Bible, Donald W. Burdick writes: Author: Unlike most NT letters, 1 John does not tell us who the author is. The earliest identification of him ...
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9 votes
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In the time of Jesus, were the Jewish authorities allowed to execute?

It seems that the Romans initially allowed the Jewish authorities to exercise capital punishment, but withdrew the privilege some time during Jesus' life. The historian Josephus writes of an ...
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9 votes
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Why is Pharaoh called, " The Great Dragon" in the book of Ezekiel

Here are the key lines of Ezekiel 29:3 in Hebrew: הִנְנִי עָלֶיךָ פַּרְעֹה מֶלֶךְ־מִצְרַיִם hinĕnî ʿāleykā parʿōh melek-miṣrayim (Behold I am against you, Pharaoh, king of Egypt,) ...
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9 votes
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Have any of the books mentioned in but not included in the Old Testament been preserved?

The short answer to your questions is that none of these books have survived. This is not surprising; a very large number of books existed in the ancient world of which only a tiny minority have been ...
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9 votes
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Was baptism practiced by first-century Jews?

Yes, Baptism is well attested in Jewish sources dating from both before and after Christ. These are both for mainstream Judaism and sectarian. From before Jesus, one finds clear references to baptism ...
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9 votes

How credible is the theory that Enki and Ninhursag influenced Genesis 2 and 3?

The view one takes on the credibility of the assertion is going to depend largely on one's presuppositions and level of allowance for the Bible text to speak for itself. If the Torah (Law, i.e. "...
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9 votes
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Ezekiel 16:4 - Why were babies rubbed with salt?

The practice is not well understood, although it has long been claimed to be part of indigenous culture from time immemorial (well, from Ezekiel's time,1 anyway!) up to the present day. From ...
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8 votes

Interpretation of Genesis 1:26?

I think it is clear that the final redactor(s) thought of Elohim as one, and therefore as the sole-one who created mankind (human beings). The phrase 'Let us make...' is a borrowed-motif from other ...
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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 evidence exists to show that the Galatians could understand Greek?

They were primarily bi-lingual Note: unattributed links are to general knowledge found on Wikipedia and primarily for the historical background. Alexander the Great made his conquests during the ...
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8 votes

Did Jesus call God YHWH?

Jesus spoke primarily Aramaic followed by Hebrew and Greek. Since most of the new testament was written in greek, you will probably never find it recorded that Jesus said "YHWH" in scriptures. This ...
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8 votes

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

I don't know the method that Wayne Grudem used. On possible method is Levenshtein Distance, which measures the number of insertions, deletions, and subsitutions needed to convert one text to another. ...
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8 votes
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Earliest attestation to Luke's gospel

Indisputable? I agree with Frank Luke's comment, further adding that using such a term does technically make the question unanswerable (because, as Frank noted, people dispute things that ought not ...
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7 votes
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Who was Neri, father of Shealtiel?

The idea in brief A recent (2015) work, The First Nativity (Part II): History and Theology of Our Incarnate Lord and Savior by Joseph David Rhodes contains a good discussion of Neri. In short, the ...
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