Scripture

  • Hermeneutics,  Scripture

    Meaning in Scripture: More Than Words

    Communication is a complicated process. Not only are words involved, but tone, mood, and non-verbal signals are also a part of the process. Even within written communication examples of sarcasm, irony, jokes, and gloom all abound. Communication is complicated because it includes both words and emotion. This is why when we read Scripture, we must remind ourselves that we should not read as if Scripture were void of emotion or feeling. Read More

  • Hermeneutics,  Old Testament,  Scripture

    Did the Prophets Understand Their Prophecies?

    Sometimes it is claimed that prophets in the Old Testament did not fully understand their own prophecies. This is often an argument for sensus plenior, which is the idea of finding a “fuller meaning” behind the text—a meaning which the original author may not have known. One of the key texts which is used to support the idea that prophets did not fully understand their prophecies is 1 Peter 1:10–12. Read More

  • Misc,  Scripture

    What is the Longest Book of the Bible?

    There are 1,189 chapters in the English bible, and 31,103 verses. But which book of the Bible is longest? I am at least partially motivated to write this blog post on the issue of the longest book of the Bible because it makes such a great trivia question! But, it also helps puts things in perspective for what you can expect when reading through the Bible. There are a variety of ways to calculate the longest book of the Bible. You can count chapters, verses, or words. You could also technically make a differentiation between Greek or Hebrew, and the common English translations that we use. Of course, it should…

  • Scripture,  Textual Criticism

    Charles Spurgeon and Textual Criticism

    Normally when Charles Spurgeon is spoken of he is hailed as the Prince of Preachers. He is especially appreciated with regard to his public preaching skill. Undoubtedly, Spurgeon was a very skilled preacher who loved the Lord and proclaimed Scripture boldly. Much of Spurgeon’s life serves as a tremendous example that Christians (generally) and preachers (specifically) ought to follow. One often-neglected aspect of Spurgeon’s preaching capability was his attention to the original language as far as ascertaining to the original text. In other words, Spurgeon regularly practiced textual criticism. Spurgeon was very concerned with making sure he was preaching what was truly God’s Word. Read More

  • Old Testament,  Scripture

    Did Old Testament Saints Know Scripture was Authoritative?

    From our perspective we sometimes take for granted that we have an authoritative canon—a collection of inspired Scripture from God. But it is worth thinking through how the Old Testament saints viewed the collection of authoritative writings. Did Old Testament believers recognize a specialized, authoritative collection of writings? Looking at the Old Testament evidence, it seems that the Jewish people recognized certain writings as authoritative from God, while at the same time acknowledging a different quality of other writings. Read More

  • New Testament,  Scripture,  Textual Criticism

    Does it Burn, or is it Exposed? (2 Peter 3:10)

    Does it burn, or is it exposed in 2 Peter 3:10? Depending on which Bible translation you are reading, you could come away with a different perception. Note, for example, the way various translations treat 2 Peter 3:10. What is going on here? This is an issue of what is called textual criticism. Although criticism sounds bad, in this context it simply means textual evaluation. In other words, textual criticism is the means by which we evaluate which words are original, and which words are scribal additions (either intentional or unintentional). Read More

  • Scripture

    Can We Trust Our Bible Translations?

    Can we trust our Bible translations? This question naturally belongs as part of our previous series on the King James Version. Some people claim that the King James Version is without any errors in it, thus being the authoritative, inerrant Word of God. However, as we demonstrated previously, there are mistakes in the translation of the KJV. This brings up the question, how can we trust other Bible translations (any of them) if there might be errors in them? This question not only applies to the KJV, but also the newer Bible translations (NASB, ESV, NIV, etc.). Read More

  • Apologetics,  Scripture

    Can You Use the Bible to Prove the Bible?

    Christians are often accused of circular reasoning when they attempt to prove the Bible by citing the Bible. Those who level these accusations say that it is improper to attempt to prove that the Bible is God’s Word by using the Bible as evidence for that. This argument may appear strong at a surface level, but it neglects the real issues involved in epistemology (the study of how we know things). Read More

  • Christian Living,  Culture,  Scripture

    A Christian Critique of Personal Experience

    Personal experience is currently regarded as the primary means of knowledge and truth in our culture. Whether it is the current issues of racism or LGBT rights, or it is something like biblical interpretation; personal experience is regularly elevated as the controlling determiner of truth. Take for example the following claims of experience: “Systemic racism must exist because I have experienced it.” Read More

  • Scripture

    Seven Posts about the King James Version

    I have done a fair bit of reading, research, and writing on the King James Version. Part of the reason I have spent much time on the issue is because I have often heard the teaching that modern English Bible translations are theologically dangerous. I have had many charitable exchanges with friends who have argued that we should only use the King James Version, and my heart desires people to think biblically and accurately about Bible translations. Thus, I thought it would be helpful to list all of the posts I have written about the King James Version for easy accessibility. In light of this, the following posts deal with…