King Hezekiah in Isaiah by Paul R. Raabe
Articles , Old Testament / July 5, 2019

King Hezekiah in Isaiah Paul R. Raabe Paul R. Raabe is Professor of Biblical Studies at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, AZ. Abstract: The book of Isaiah presents three episodes that feature interactions between the God of Israel and King Hezekiah, Isaiah 36-37, 38, and 39. These three episodes give a complex portrait of this king of Judah. This essay explores the different sides to this complex portrait. Key Words: Hezekiah, Isaiah 36-39, trust, pride, contrast between kings Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Isaiah 7:12–16 — Cutting Down the Davidic Tree: Pivotal Point in the Israelite Monarchy by Peter J. Gentry
Articles , Old Testament / July 3, 2019

Isaiah 7:12–16 — Cutting Down the Davidic Tree: Pivotal Point in the Israelite Monarchy Peter J. Gentry Peter J. Gentry is Donald L. Williams Professor of Old Testament Interpretation The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Abstract: The focus of this brief study is the contribution and role played by Isaiah 7 within the plot structure of the Old Testament as a single, unified, literary work—as a whole. The main thesis is that the brief conversation recorded between Ahaz and Isaiah is a pivotal point in the narrative plot-structure of the Old Testament that causes the tree of the Davidic dynasty to be cut down. Key Words: almah, virgin, Immanuel, Davidic Covenant, Isaiah 7 Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

The Role of the Philistines in the Establishment of the Israelite Monarchy by Andrew E. Steinmann
Articles , Old Testament / June 27, 2019

The Role of the Philistines in the Establishment of the Israelite Monarchy Andrew E. Steinmann Andrew E. Steinmann is Distinguished Professor of Theology and Hebrew at Concordia University Chicago Abstract: This essay examines the portrayal of the Philistines in Judges and Samuel as vital to the establishment of a legitimate, divinely-authorized monarchy in ancient Israel. After an opening section that looks at the Philistines and their origins, the essay examines the Philistines as antagonists in the ongoing narrative concerning the establishment of a permanent Israelite royal dynasty as ultimately achieved under David. It is demonstrated that Saul failed in his responsibility to remove the Philistine threat from Israel, but David succeeded precisely matching Saul’s failures. After David’s reign the Philistines are largely absent from the narrative concerning the Israelite kingdoms—they have become simply one of the surrounding nations. Key Words: Israelite monarchy, kingship, Philistines, Caphtorite, Casluhite, Samson, Saul, David Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Monarchy in Judges: Positive or Negative? by Mary L. Conway
Articles , Old Testament / June 20, 2019

Monarchy in Judges: Positive or Negative? Mary L. Conway Mary L. Conway is Assistant Professor of Old Testament at McMaster Divinity College in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Abstract: There has been much discussion in the scholarly literature as to whether Judges is pro-monarchic or anti-monarchic. Gideon’s rejection of kingship and the disastrous rule of Abimelech have been used in evidence to assert that human kingship is not Yhwh’s preferred mode of governance. On the other hand, variations on the refrain “There was no king in Israel; each person did what was right in their own eyes” in the final chapters would appear to support the establishment of dynastic kingship. Reducing the issue of monarchy to an “either/or” situation, however, is to underestimate the message about kingship, and indeed leadership, that the book of Judges presents. Key Words: Judges, Monarchy, Kingship, Leadership, Anarchy. Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

A Biblical Theology of the Israelite Monarchy by Eugene Merrill

A Biblical Theology of the Israelite Monarchy Eugene H. Merrill Eugene H. Merrill is Distinguished Professor of Old Testament Studies (Emeritus) Dallas Theological Seminary Abstract: In undertaking a comprehensive Biblical theology, one must take account of each and every aspect of the biblical message and from the accumulated data distill its fundamental concepts and concerns, looking for a central theme if one exists. At the very opening of the sacred text and in the first recorded statement of God about mankind, he speaks of the purpose of his creation: “Be fruitful, multiply, and have dominion over all things” (Genesis 1:26-28). That mandate was never rescinded and the Israelite Monarchy was one of its most significant expressions. Key Words: Israel, Israelite Monarchy, Kingship, David Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Isaiah 53 in the Theology of the Book of Isaiah by Paul R. Raabe
Articles , Old Testament / September 17, 2018

Isaiah 53 in the Theology of the Book of Isaiah Paul R. Raabe Paul R. Raabe is Professor of Biblical Studies at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, AZ. He is the author of several works including the Obadiah commentary in the Anchor Bible series. He is currently working on a commentary on Isaiah in the Concordia Commentary series. Introduction: Critics attack the Christian faith in various ways, and their attacks gain a hearing. One such critic is Christopher Hitchens, a self designated “anti-theist.” He critiques Good Friday and vicarious redemption by asserting that accountability, responsibility, and guilt remain on the perpetrator and must always remain on the perpetrator. He claims it is non-transferable. In his view the notion of vicarious punishment leads the guilty to evade their own responsibility. With that critique in the background, I wish to explore the book of Isaiah, specifically Isaiah 53 within the theology of the book. To use the analogy of Irenaeus, all the pieces together form a beautiful mosaic of a majestic King. In the mosaic of Isaiah the central diamond is the Suffering Servant Song of Isaiah 53.3 In order to appreciate that central diamond we need to understand the overall design…

Unique Hermeneutical Issues in the Homiletical Treatment of Historical Texts: A Case Study on 1 Kings 21:1-29 by Brian Koning
Articles , Hermeneutics , Old Testament / September 13, 2018

Unique Hermeneutical Issues in the Homiletical Treatment of Historical Texts: A Case Study on 1 Kings 21:1-29 Brian Koning Brian M. Koning (PhD Student, Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary) is an Adjunct Professor of Theology at Grand Canyon University Abstract: Any preaching of the Old Testament necessarily must face historical narrative passages. Properly handling these passages though presents certain unique difficulties, and often the texts are handled with substandard care. Traditional Aristotelian three-point sermons seem arbitrary or forced upon the text and do not capture the heart of the message. There is tension in handling historical narratives between moralizing the story to bring it from “then” to “now”, and treating it as a merely historical item of note. This article seeks to study the elements and methods of hermeneutics unique to historical texts with an eye towards proper preparation for homiletical use. What follows seeks to be a distillation of methodology on hermeneutics in general, towards a direct application to historical texts. It will be argued that to rightly handle the text, expositors must appreciate the text as both historical and redemptive in nature. Exegeting from that starting point will lead the expositor to work along the textual, epochal, and canonical…

Exegesis by Story: The Disciplined Imagination of the World of Scripture by Mike Baird
Articles , Hermeneutics / September 11, 2018

Exegesis by Story: The Disciplined Imagination of the World of Scripture Mike Baird Mike Baird is Professor Emeritus, College of Theology, Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, Arizona. Abstract: This paper is about a method of exegesis, an exegetical procedure. It addresses the issue of reading the text in a way that respects and takes seriously all three traditional foci of interpretation, the author, the text, and the reader in one holistic approach to interpreting the text. Thus, the core issue is the focus of exegesis of the text (Is it the world of the reader or of the author?) and the locus of meaning (Is it in the text or in the mind of the reader?). Exegesis should focus on the lifestory of the text (or passage of Scripture) as the primary context. The life-story is the reconstructed story behind and revealed in the passage. The life-story provides the common ground for the author, text, and reader to interact in a holistic way in the work of the exegete. Underlying this method is the assumption that the passage represents and reveals the world of the ancient community of faith, which can be imaged in such a way that the modern reader…

Philemon: Signed, Sealed, and Delivered by David Seal
Articles , New Testament / September 7, 2018

Philemon: Signed, Sealed, and Delivered David Seal David Seal (PhD, Regent University) is adjunct professor at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He also teaches Bible and World Religions at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan. David has recently written Prayer as Divine Experience in 4 Ezra and John’s Apocalypse: Emotions, Empathy, and Engagement with God (Hamilton, 2017) as well as contributed to a variety of publications including The Expository Times, Bibliotheca Sacra, and the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society. Abstract: Given that the documents that later formed the canon of the New Testament were intended to be persuasive, it is a relatively safe assumption that the lector reading these texts would have added some vocal modulation and gestures at appropriate places during his recitation. Reading, acting, and rhetorical delivery were considered related skills. Following a summary of the nature of oral societies, a discussion of ancient public speaking, and an overview of the letter of Philemon, we will examine the letter for clues that indicate the lector may have made use of his voice and body to strengthen the message of this short letter. We will propose that the reading of Philemon was likely accompanied by hand and…

This is My Beloved Son, Whom I hate? A Critique of the Christus Odium Variant of Penal Substitution by Joshua R. Farris and S. Mark Hamilton
Articles , Theology / September 4, 2018

This is My Beloved Son, Whom I Hate? A Critique of the Christus Odium Variant of Penal Substitution Joshua R. Farris & S. Mark Hamilton Joshua R. Farris is an Assistant Professor of Theology at Houston Baptist University. S. Mark Hamilton is a PhD candidate at the Free University of Amsterdam. Abstract: There is a subtle, almost imperceptible, theological metamorphosis underway and it is taking place not only in the academy and as a result, in the pulpit, it is taking place in the pew. For, in some evangelical quarters, it is no longer enough to simply believe that Christ absorbed the wrath of God as a penal substitute. Some have recently gone so far as to claim that, as a penal substitute, Christ became the object of the Father’s perfect hatred. In this paper, we take a closer look at this rather frightening aspect of this Christus Odium variant of penal substitution—something that we think, if gone unchecked, may well become the logical (better still, illogical) deposit of a new dogmatic inheritance for the American evangelical tradition as it pertains to substitutionary atonement. Key Words: retribution, rectoral, reparation, substitution, odius, satisfaction Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin