Category Archives: Theology

Atonement: In Reply to Hank

My last post regarding the eternal fate of Gentiles before the time of Jesus was overly long, and Hank — whose questions and comments prompted that post — has responded in detail. The quoted materials are from his response in … Continue reading

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Atonement: The Fate of Ancient Gentiles (and a Few Other Things)

[This is a little long. Anyway, it all leads to a question at the end and, I hope, demonstrates the importance of remembering the historical narrative of the Scriptures as we seek to interpret them.] In comments, long-time reader Hank and … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 12 (A Little New Perspective)

We’re getting close to the end. Really. Part of N.T. Wright’s contribution to contemporary theology is his understanding of the place of Israel in the great, grand narrative of scripture. For most of us, Israel is like a mistake God … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 11 (Back to Romans)

Back to Romans Early in Romans, Paul plainly alludes to the several Old Testament passages we covered in the last post. (Rom 2:28-29 ESV) 28 For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. 29 But … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 10 (The Moral Law Within, Part 2)

Jeremiah explains that God will make a new covenant with this people. (Jer 31:31-34 ESV) 31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 9 (The Moral Law Within, Part 1)

Deuteronomy and the Spirit Imagine the scene. Nearly all the Israelites who’d left Egypt with Moses had died in the desert. The next generation — desert-hardened, accustomed to traveling as led by God’s special presence in the camp — prepared … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 8 (Rightly Dividing the Law of Moses)

So just what parts of the Law of Moses survive? Do we honor the Sabbath? The Sabbath as Sabbath or Sunday as Sabbath? I bring up the Sabbath because it’s a good example of just how muddy our thinking can … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 7 (The Jerusalem Council’s Decision)

In the last post, we considered the process by which the Jerusalem church’s leadership came up with an answer to the circumcision question: whether Gentiles must convert to Judaism to be saved. Peter and Paul both addressed the council, pointing … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 6 (How Much of the Law of Moses Continues?)

Oddly enough, one of the  toughest questions the early church had to wrestle with was to what extent the Law of Moses continued in effect after Pentecost. We like to imagine that the apostles or New Testament prophets were gifted … Continue reading

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From the Comments: The Connection of the Church with Israel, Part 5 (Jesus an Old Testament Prophet?)

So now it’s time to talk about Jesus some more. You see, lately I keep seeing this odd teaching that because Jesus taught before Pentecost, he’s really an Old Testament prophet and so his words are not binding on Christians. … Continue reading

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