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Archive for August, 2007

How to Mis-use Hebrew in the Name of Selfish Christianity

13th August 2007

One of the dangers of learning a bit of biblical Hebrew (or Greek) is thinking that after a basic introduction (i.e., less than four semesters), you understand the nuances of the language. Many preachers take a little bit of Hebrew or Greek and then go on to expound profoundly about the meaning of this or that Hebrew/Greek word Sunday mornings when they preach. These errors are tame in comparison to what some people do to/with the Bible.

This video contains a hilarious (and horrendous) example of two “interpreters” appealing to the Hebrew meaning of a word to serve their heretical theology. The discussion of the Hebrew word for “word/thing” (דבר) by Kenneth Copland and his guest is a classic example of what D.A. Carson calls the”illegitimate totality transfer” fallacy (i.e., the explicit or implicit transfer of all the meanings of a given word into any given passage — in this case into every passage where the word “word” occurs!). This is such a hilarious (and sad) example that I will have to use it in my biblical interpretation class this fall.

Take a gander at the video for yourself — but be warned: while it is funny, it also reveals a side of Christianity which I find offensive (and if you don’t find that type of Christianity offensive then the video will likely offend you!).

(HT Scotteriology)

Posted in Hermeneutics, Lingusitics, Popular Culture, Theology | 8 Comments »

My Favourite Proverb Visualized

9th August 2007

I came across this drawing when looking for a picture of a cow for my daughter:


This has got to be my favourite proverb — not just because it is vulgar (and reminds me that the Bible is a gritty, down-to-earth book), but because it is an accurate picture of the human condition.

You can see more sketches and comics by Bryan Ballinger over at

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Biblical Studies Carnival XX is online at Dr. Claude Mariottini

1st August 2007

Claude Mariottini has uploaded Biblical Studies Carnival XX over at his at his eponymous blog. Claude has done a great job highlighting academic biblical studies in the blogosphere for the month of July 2007. Great Job!

The next Biblical Studies Carnival will be hosted by Duane Smith at his abnormal blog, Abnormal Interests, in the first week of September 2007. Please heed Claude’s request to submit blog posts to this next carnival! Do your part by regularly nominating posts you are reading around the blogosphere this month.

For more information, consult the Biblical Studies Carnival Homepage.

Posted in Biblical Studies Carnival | Comments Off