Posts from September 2012

Dining With Jesus

By Gary McIntosh Sep. 28, 2012 9:40 p.m. Church Life, Culture, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership

Jesus often created controversy, particularly when he associated with sinners. He made it a practice of eating in the company of acknowledged sinners, a practice that was in direct contrast to that of the Pharisees. Why did He practice such an unusual form of hospitality for his day?

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"Jesus' Wife" Papyrus: an Update

By Gary Manning Jr Sep. 28, 2012 5:08 p.m. Apologetics, New Testament

Last week, I posted my initial take on the so-called "Gospel of Jesus' Wife." My first point was that it was "too early to tell" whether the manuscript was genuine. In the last twenty years, forgers have produced some amazingly convincing forgeries, so scholars have become cautious about all archeological finds.

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Does the Passage Belong in the Bible? The Woman Caught in Adultery (John 7:53-8:11)

By Edward W. Klink III Sep. 28, 2012 12:00 a.m. Biblical Exposition, Church Life, New Testament

John 7:53-8:11, often described as “The Passage of the Woman Caught in Adultery” (passage de adultera), is famous for several reasons. The pleasant reason is that it is one of the most dramatic displays of the grace of God in the Bible. But there is also a more difficult reason that needs to be addressed: this passage was likely not in the original version of the Gospel of John, but was added later at an undeterminable time and for an unknown reason. How should the church treat this passage?

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“Lord, We Haven't Any Idea Where You Are Going!”

By Joy Mosbarger Sep. 27, 2012 5:17 p.m. New Testament, Spiritual Formation

A few weeks ago during the Scripture reading in church I was captivated by one of the verses read.  It captured my thoughts to such an extent that I had a difficult time concentrating on the sermon.  The words of the verse resonated in a deep place in my heart.  

The verse was John 14:5.  In verses 1-3, Jesus is talking about going to prepare a place for the disciples in his Father’s house, a place where they will always be with him.  Verse 5 is Thomas’s response to Jesus’ words in verse 4 where Jesus says, “And you know where I am going and how to get there” (NLT).  In his candid frustration, Thomas bursts out with this reaction:  “‘No, we don’t know, Lord,’ Thomas said.  “We haven’t any idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?’”

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“Mormons Just Believe!” (Christians too?)

By Moyer Hubbard Sep. 25, 2012 4:07 p.m. Apologetics, Culture, Theology

Many of you have probably heard of The Book of Mormon—not the book itself, but the Broadway musical that garnered nine Tony awards in 2011, including Best Musical, and earned a Grammy as well. It tells the story of two bright-eyed American Mormon missionaries who attempt to bring their good news to a remote village in Uganda racked by war, poverty, AIDS, and famine. (From the summary on Wikipedia). It is a powerful—albeit raunchy—satire of religion from the creators of that epitome of high-brow, cultured entertainment, South Park. I have not seen the musical myself, but I have viewed several segments on YouTube, and found myself (I admit it!) snickering at the delicious lampoon of Mormon doctrine, marveling at the music and vocal performances, and also deeply challenged by the message of the show.

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The Gift of a Loss (a parable)

By John McKinley Sep. 19, 2012 3:43 p.m. Spiritual Formation

Jack Wilson had always enjoyed being in the open air where he could stretch his lungs and move his twenty-five year-old limbs freely.  Today, however, Jack imagined he was in the fourteenth century while he pedaled the five miles to his school when a brown Buick slammed into his bicycle from behind.  The impact threw him ten feet towards the gutter where he pulled his face to his knees and protectively clutched his head, unaware of the blood.  Then Jack was out.

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Did Jesus Have a Wife? A New Gnostic Fragment

By Gary Manning Jr Sep. 19, 2012 8:37 a.m. Apologetics, New Testament

According to an article in the Washington Post, an ancient manuscript claiming that Jesus had a wife has just been discovered. I’ll tackle this new discovery with some Q&A.

What is this new find?

Karen King, the Gnostic scholar who published the manuscript, has titled it the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife (see the scholarly article here). It is a very small fragment, only 12 partial lines, of an ancient Gnostic book. The fragment, written in Coptic, dates from the fourth century, but it is a copy of an older book, perhaps written in the late second century. According to the fragment, Jesus refers to “my wife.”

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