Category Archives: Uncategorized

Recommended Resource: The Story of a Kingdom

I have just been notified of another excellent website that seeks to explain the Bible by walking through the storyline; it’s called The Story of a Kingdom. The niche of this particular site is its orientation towards a simple and understandable presentation of the Biblical storyline with a view in particular towards those who have English as a second language. Available on the site are three resources available for pdf download: (1) The Story of a Kingdom, a study guide that walks through the Biblical story including questions, diagrams, etc. useful for group of personal study; (2) The Story of a Kingdom book, a shortened version of the study guide written to read more like a book; and (3) a Powerpoint presentation that overviews the entire curriculum.

Although I have not read the materials extensively, my initial examination reveals an excellent resource. The author is Jonathan Gibson, one of the editors of the Beginning with Moses website I have previously mentioned. I look forward to digging deeper into this resource and trust it will be helpful to others as well. I have now added a link to this site on the sidebar to the right.

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Essentials in the Biblical Storyline Part 3 – Promise (Gen 4 – Mal 4)

In some ways this might be the most difficult chapter of the biblical storyline to condense neatly and succinctly since it covers the time from the fall to the advent of Christ. The OT is filled with significant promises, covenants, events, etc. that ar important for the biblical storyline, but as you think of the big picture which one are especially crucial for understanding the storyline?

Think in terms of promises, covenants, specific figures, events, etc.

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Essentials in the Biblical Storyline Part 1 – Creation (Genesis 1-2)

Recently I ‘ve been reflecting on the essentials of the biblical storyline as I prepare to teach an biblical interpretation and communication for a parachurch organization this summer. In order to faciliate my thinking, I’ve begun working through the key movements and asking myself the question: “What does a person need to grasp from this particular chapter in the biblical story to ensure they understand the rest of the story and themselves properly?”

In light of that, I’m beginning with the Creation account in Genesis 1-2. What aspects of these chapters would you regard as essential for a person to understand the story of Scripture and the story of their own lives? In particular I am thinking about truths about God, human beings, the world, etc. that emerge from Genesis 1-2. So what would you highlight?

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The Gospel Pattern of Practice Rooted in Doctrine

Tonight in my weekly Bible study we’ll be looking at 1 Peter 2:18-25. As I’ve studied this passage this week, I’ve been struck again by how often the NT authors explicitly root their ethical instruction in specific aspects of the gospel. For example, here in 2:18-20 Peter exhorts servants to be submissive to their masters, even if it means suffering unjustly. Then in 2:21-25 Peter roots this endurance of unjust affliction in the example of Christ, leading him to make six statements about Christ did or did not do:

1. Commited no sin
2. No deceit found in his mouth
3. Despite being reviled did not revile in return
4. Despite suffering did not threaten
5. Entrusted himself to the one who judges justly
6. Bore our sins on the cross

This leads then in 2:24 to a purpose statement: so that having died to sin you might live to righteousness.

So note the gospel pattern here: (1) exhortation to specific actions; (2) foundation in some aspect of the gospel. I think this pattern underlies all of the ethical instruction of the NT, even where the gospel foundation is not explicitly stated. In those cases, though, I believe we are required to make the connection in order to truly understand how to live out the commands of Scripture.

And as one final note, I have once again been struck by oour amazing Savior, who did all of this. Who among us can be sinless for even one day, or perhaps even one hour? Who among us never deceives with our speeh? Who among us does not return insult for insult? Who among us does not offer threats? Yet Jesus perfectly embodied these impossible traits. How can our hearts be cold towards one who is so amazing in his sinless perfection?

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Help for a Classical Music Neophyte

Although I enjoy classical music, I am woefully ignorant about it. At this point, my knowledge and exposure is pretty limited to Mozart, Beethoven, Handel, Tchaikovsky and Bach, but even my exposure to them is rather rudimentary. So I am turning to others to assist me in expanding my classical music horizons. The recent gift of a 60GB video IPod as a graduation gift has fueled my desire to expand my classical music library, so what suggestions do those of you who have more knowledge than me ( = just about anybody) for where to begin adding to my collection?

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The Role of Faith in Politics & Society

Andrew Sullivan writes an interesting piece on the intersection between Christianity and political involvement. In light of our recent post on 1 Peter 2:13-17 (see below) and the God-ordained role of government to restrain/punish evil and praise the good, how do you evaluate Sullivan’s argument?

NOTE: I would be particularly interested in the perspective of our readers who are outside of the U.S., as I am guessing they might have some particularly helpful observations that Americans at times may be blind to.

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Welcome!

Welcome to this new forum for all things pertaining to biblical theology (and some things not related at all). My hope is that this will serve as a place where I can post my own developing thoughts on topics related to biblical theology, ranging from discussion of specific biblical passages to broader biblical theological themes. Only time will tell how this blog develops, but my hope is to start discussions that will provoke thought on how Scripture fits together and connect those discussions to larger issues in the church and culture where possible.

And since I am new at this, I appreciate your patience as I learn the ropes of blogging.

For more information on me, please click on my profile. I look forward to our ongoing conversation.

Matt

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