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Biblical Interpretation

Three Things So Obvious That the Bible Left Them Out

Dr. Joel Hoffman | Posted 12.19.2014 | Religion
Dr. Joel Hoffman

And King Herod's appearance in Matthew 2 explains the context of Jesus's arrival on earth. But these and many other central facts about the Bible's narrative escape the modern Bible reader.

Abraham Discovers the God of the Philosophers -- The Third Installment in a Weekly Parsha Series

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach | Posted 11.03.2014 | Religion
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

We read of Abraham, the first Jew, and the first to discover a Creator. For a moment, let us contrast God's revelation at Sinai when He gave the Torah and revealed Himself to all as Master of the Universe, with Abraham's self-discovery of God in his youth.

Free the Bible!

Pete Enns | Posted 11.23.2014 | Religion
Pete Enns

In our efforts to defend the Bible, we have gone too far. While strenuously believing in the Bible, we have made ourselves incapable of reading what it actually says. We have domesticated God's revolutionary Word, turning it into a human-made idol.

10 Signs You Take The Bible Too Literally

Pete Enns | Posted 11.09.2014 | Religion
Pete Enns

1. You laugh when you read about dinosaur fossils, because you know they are really God's little inside joke to confuse atheists.

Historical Jesus? Not So Fast.

Chris Sosa | Posted 11.02.2014 | Science
Chris Sosa

In recent days, protesters have taken to defending opposing moral positions by claiming Jesus held their viewpoint. Aside from the obvious problem of using a single historical figure as a moral barometer, there's another troubling issue at hand.

An Atheist's (Somewhat) Relaxed View of the Qur'an

Ronald A. Lindsay | Posted 10.01.2014 | Religion
Ronald A. Lindsay

Objectively, there's no denying that today Islamic extremism poses more of a threat than other types of religious fanaticism. There are complex historical, social, and cultural reasons for this. But this is not a matter of the text of the Qur'an being inherently more susceptible to intolerant interpretations than the Bible.

What Did Dave Brat Learn in Seminary?

Kate Blanchard | Posted 08.18.2014 | Religion
Kate Blanchard

In fact, everything I learned at Princeton Seminary points me away from what I see as the moral laziness of libertarianism, in which I take care of me and nobody else.

The Kingdom is Within

Harold Lloyd | Posted 06.16.2014 | Religion
Harold Lloyd

The Kingdom is Within It's Holy Week again, that annual time when some of us struggle with the "orthodox" account of the Passion. How is it morally ...

Will the Real Noah Please Stand Up?

Adam Hamilton | Posted 06.03.2014 | Religion
Adam Hamilton

The problem for the filmmakers, and also for many of us as we read the story of Noah in the Bible, is a failure to understand what kind of story it is. Which leads us to interpret it in ways that either miss the point or distort the point.

A Yogi Embraces Pope Francis

Sister Jenna | Posted 05.08.2014 | Religion
Sister Jenna

As I approach my upcoming birthday, I am drawn to remember Pope Francis. There are moments that touch our lives and I remember where I was on March...

Snake Handling and the Gospel of Mark

Michael Gilmour | Posted 05.03.2014 | Religion
Michael Gilmour

This strange early twentieth-century expression of religious faith is not widespread -- confined to a small number of churches in the southeastern United States -- but has its roots in a literal reading of a cluster of biblical metaphors.

Finding Nemo... in the Bible

Rabbi Levi Welton | Posted 05.02.2014 | Religion
Rabbi Levi Welton

The story of Jonah is how a mortal man tried to run away from the mission his Creator had gifted to him. He was subsequently swallowed by an enormous fish which spit him out onto dry land only when he resolved to return to his true mission in life.

Pioneering Biblical Scholar: Charles B. Copher

Nyasha Junior | Posted 04.27.2014 | Religion
Nyasha Junior

Although he published extensively in religious journals, Rev. Dr. Charles Buchanan Copher's work is not widely known, but Copher has not been forgotten.

VIDEO: Steve Chalke on Taking the Bible Beyond Fundamentalism and Atheism

Derek Flood | Posted 04.20.2014 | Religion
Derek Flood

Chalke, along with these other leaders, represents a growing shift, especially among younger Evangelicals, towards a more affirming, compassionate and thoughtful face of Evangelicalism, and this flows into how Scripture is interpreted and applied.

Can Faith Help You Make Better Decisions?

Yaacov Cohen | Posted 03.26.2014 | Religion
Yaacov Cohen

Faith can help us make better decisions. Faith empowers us with the humility of our human condition, empowers us to deal with reality and to do our part of the deal, and opens us up to the hope that God will do his part as well.

The Surprising Truth Behind Biblical Prophecies

Dr. Joel Hoffman | Posted 02.08.2014 | Religion
Dr. Joel Hoffman

Ask most people what happens to prophecies in the Bible, and the response will be that they get fulfilled. But that popular answer is based on a fundamental translation mistake.

Max Brooks Goes To Hell In "Shadow Walk" Comic Book

Aaron Sagers | Posted 02.03.2014 | Weird News
Aaron Sagers

"Shadow Walk" follows a team of soldiers, a priest and a scientist into a mysterious portal where the characters must confront their fears -- and establish whether they've stumbled onto a gateway to hell.

Return of the Rabbi: A Short Story

Brett Gallaher | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Brett Gallaher

"Good morning, everyone. You all knew this day was coming. I am returning to Earth," Jesus said, awaiting an outburst of excitement. To his surprise there was only an awkward silence, accompanied by faint whispering amongst the crowd.

Four Reasons Why Jesus Would Not Call Mark Driscoll After a First Date

Brett Gallaher | Posted 01.23.2014 | Religion
Brett Gallaher

Jesus would send out an emergency text to his homegirls to come rescue him. He'd stall in the meantime: "Mark, I'm really flattered that you've devoted your entire ministry to me. That means a lot. Tell me more about what attracted you to Christianity." Mark would lean over and whisper two words in Jesus' ear: "Real. Men."

Are Women Dirty?

Rabbi Levi Welton | Posted 09.23.2013 | Religion
Rabbi Levi Welton

Far from being "dirty," the woman's cycle is of the highest purity, for it reminds us that it is the cycles, changes, and opportunities of this physical life that define our greatest spirituality.

A Precedent Is a Precedent... Until It's Not

Derek Penwell | Posted 09.10.2013 | Religion
Derek Penwell

As we approach some sort of resolution to the argument about the affirmation of LGBT people in our culture, the question we must answer isn't about how traditions based on the Bible could be subject to change, but how could anyone have ever thought they weren't?

What Are the 'Weightier Matters of the Law'? [Matthew 23:23]

Morgan Guyton | Posted 09.08.2013 | Religion
Morgan Guyton

We should read the Bible trying to understand how to live according to justice, mercy, and faith. Each passage in the Bible speaks to our lives insofar as it leads us into greater justice, mercy, and faith.

Reading Revelation Realistically

Michael Gilmour | Posted 07.30.2013 | Religion
Michael Gilmour

The minute we claim a reading of apocalyptic literature that is exclusive -- this story is about us, our age, our nationality, our crisis -- we deny the book's relevance to other Christians removed from us in space and time.

The Pope, Non-Christians And The Bible

Greg Carey | Posted 07.24.2013 | Religion
Greg Carey

Many people take it as Jesus' definitive statement on Christian exclusivity: Have faith in Jesus, go to heaven. But so many things are wrong with this way of using the Bible.

Biblical Scholarship: What's It Good For?

Greg Carey | Posted 07.06.2013 | Religion
Greg Carey

Ordinary Christians have been doing without biblical scholarship, or with very little exposure to it, for centuries. And it's plain to see that Christian biblical scholars are no more saintly than anyone else.