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I love you, Bible . . . just not that way

Posted by PeteEnns on February 8, 2017 in nature of the Bible 39 Comments

I don’t think the Bible works well as a rule book for Christians, nor do I think, as a collection of writings, it is meant to be corralled into a work of so-called “systematic theology.” The diversity, contradictions, and internal debates and critiques of Scripture, which are so much of the character of Scripture, are lost

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does Jesus disagree with himself?

Posted by PeteEnns on February 6, 2017 in nature of the Bible New Testament 26 Comments

Hahaha. Funny meme. But seriously. Many of us have been taught to think something along these lines, that the Gospels are basically on the same page and any differences are either imagined or inconsequential. Maybe. That works for some things. But the problem with that way of thinking is that it presumes that “saying the same thing”

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an open letter to President Trump concerning refugees

Posted by PeteEnns on February 2, 2017 in Bible and culture/current events 16 Comments

My friend Marc Brettler wrote an open letter to President Trump concerning refugees and asked me if I would post it. And I am most happy to. Brettler is the Bernice and Morton Lerner Professor of Jewish Studies at Duke University, and formerly longtime professor at Brandeis University. If you’re not familiar with his work, check out his great

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the Bible is like . . . a room of wise elders . . .

Posted by PeteEnns on February 1, 2017 in nature of the Bible Old Testament 5 Comments

Below is a quote from Kent Sparks’s “Genesis 1-11 as Ancient Historiography,” which is his contribution to the 2015 book Genesis: History, Fiction, or Neither?, one of Zondervan’s many Counterpoints books, where multiple perspectives are offered on a given subject. The other contributors are James K. Hoffmeier (Wheaton College) and Gordon J. Wenham (Trinity College, Bristol, England,

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why it’s spiritually valuable to embrace the Bible’s diversity and contradictions (or, this is a hill to die on)

Posted by PeteEnns on January 30, 2017 in nature of the Bible 15 Comments

I am reading through (and already blogged once) on a fascinating book, Revelation and Authority: Sinai in Jewish Scripture and Tradition, by Benjamin D. Sommer, an observant Jew and professor of Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Languages at the Jewish Theological Seminary in NYC. One of the things I try to stress in my teaching, blogging,

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