The Bible Geek Podcast 14-063
Thursday, December 11th 2014, 1h40m
What is it that God gets out of all this bowing and scraping? Jews eat only unleavened bread (matzo) during Passover season, so could Jesus have said to his Jewish followers on the Seder night that "This bread is my body"? If Simon Magus is Paul and Simon was called 'great,' then could the name 'Paul' ('little') be a direct pun on his former non-Christian epithet? Can you share any stories of your interacting with a Jehovah's Witness at your door? R. H. Charles insists that David could not have been a polytheist, so the teraphim in his home must have been images of Yahweh? Is this just harmonizing? If I understand evangelical theology correctly, the good news is the fact that humans now have a way to avoid being tormented in hell for eternity. Does the New Testament make this claim? Is it possible that the redactor of Genesis 32 has put verse 2 in as a commentary on verse 7, or as some sort of foreshadowing? What do you make of Jesus-Dumuzi parallels? What are your personal thoughts on Lena Einhorn's paper from SBL: "The Egyptian Prophet"? And why do you think that more scholarly attention has not been given to her hypothesis? William Dever presents the convincing case that the original Old Testament was a tool designed by the ruling elite of Jerusalem to codify, develop, and maintain their power base. Could the same case be made for the New Testament? Wouldn't Margaret Barker's work back up the idea of a crucified Son of God before the creation of the world--as held by many Gnostics? I was told that when Christ died on the cross he descended to hell and spent the period of time between his death and resurrection writhing there. Is this the opinion of most scholars, and is there enough biblical evidence in your opinion to support it? How spurious was the identification of the recently destroyed Younis Shrinei as the resting place of Jonah? What are the historical claims of the Salafi movement in terms of getting back to the original practices of the earliest Muslims? Robert Eisenman seems to dismiss the notion that Paul is a tentmaker as mentioned in Acts. Is this a mere literary device to make Paul seem a humble guy simply "passin' on the Word," or does "Tentmaker" carry a larger connotation? In 1 Corinthians 9:5, Paul says: "Do we not have the right to be accompanied by a believing wife, as do other brothers of the Lord and Cephas?" What's the deal with this passage? What are your thoughts as to why Ishmael has a cameo at Abraham's funeral?
The Bible Geek Podcast 14-062
Thursday, December 4th 2014, 39m
Concerning Islam as "the most successful of the Christian heresies," does this originate with the 8th century writer John of Damascus? What message would the audience get from hearing the text of Revelation, except a story where their enemy has a bad end? It can't be prophecy because Nero ("616" or "666") was long gone, so what's the point? What is your take on the definition of "faith"? Is Peter Boghossian's definition of faith as "pretending to know things you don't know" a caricature? What do you make of the Sibylline Oracles? What was their value to the early Christians? Do they shed any light on the Christ Myth Theory or on the relationship between Christianity and the Pagan religions? You say that the bible does not address abortion but isn't that what Num. 5:21 is all about? What is with all the figures of speech in the Bible? Is there any religion other than Christianity that relies so heavily on emotional music? You once discussed early depictions of Jesus as a young man or youth, and this had something to do with him being associated with sun gods. Can you clarify this relationship? Are there any resources that comprehensively cover pagan parallels to Christ? Which associations do you think are the strongest?
The Bible Geek Podcast 14-061
Tuesday, December 2nd 2014, 1h15m
What can you tell us about the Cainites? What do you make of the Talmudists' theory that Joshua 20 originally was part of Deuteronomy? Clearchus reported a dialogue with Aristotle, where the philosopher states that the Hebrews were descendants of the Indian philosophers. What are your thoughts on this? If Jesus is a second Elijah, who is the corresponding Elisha? You said you thought it would be the church on whom a double portion of the spirit is poured at Pentecost. Jesus clearly expects his disciples to think of John the Baptist as Elijah. It is only natural to think of Jesus as Elisha with a double portion of the spirit. Why would someone see in the gospels an equating of Jesus with Elijah? What is your opinion of Elaine Pagels' book "Revelations: Visions, Prophecy, and Politics in the Book of Revelation"? When talking about Christ being buried in the tomb, Bart Ehrman recently admitted he had always taken it for granted and only recently researched Roman post-crucifixion burial practices. Does this undermine his credibility? Why does the Bible offer so little in the way of useful advice on the subject of medicine from herbs to provide pain relief? How much do we know about the origin Islam's black stone? Was stone worship a common practice with our pagan ancestors? Might there have been many black stones floating around? You say the Mandeans, Muslims and the Gospel of John have some Gnostic influence. Are there other modern sects with Gnostic influences? If we don't think 'Paul' or whoever he was wrote any of the epistles ascribed to him, does this not require an example of a genuine 'Pauline' epistle to which the others do not conform? What are the criteria for pseudepigrapha? What about the theory that the historical Paul may have actually been Sergius Paulus (as named in Acts) who was probably one of Herod's nephews? By which book of the OT was the concept of Monolatrism completely forgotten? When Paul references that he had a "revelation from the scriptures" do you think he could be referencing any non-canonical scriptures? Would the New Testament make more or less sense for the Christ myth theory if we had no gospels and why? Do you believe in the historicity of the Babylonian Exile?
The Bible Geek Podcast 14-060
Monday, November 24th 2014, 42m
Why is pagan god worship among Yahweh's people so uncommon today compared to antiquity? "The parenthesis" seems to be a critical component in dispensational theology, but I don't hear much about it. Is it scriptural? Is it plausible? Doesn't the word "ektroma" in 1 Corinthians 15:8 refer to abortion of miscarriage, not to "one untimely born"? Can't the popular notion of the Rapture claim the support of 1 Thess 4:17 and Matt 24:40-42? Could Lilith have originally been Enosh's wife - later added as Adam's wife? According to the Mandaeans the word "nasirutha" means priestly craft. Is it possible that Jesus of Nazareth, like Mary of Magdala originally referred to the person's trade and not a specific city in the Galilee? Is it possible that the Didache circulated alongside Matthew, hence Justin Martyr's confusion over the Gospel being the "Memoirs (teachings?) of the Apostles" and the connection between the Didache and Acts? Do the more primitive beliefs of the Ebionites imply no historical Jesus?
The Bible Geek Podcast 14-059
Wednesday, November 19th 2014, 24m
If humans can have free will in heaven but always choose the good, why didn't God make us that way to start with? Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith says that in Luke 23:43, Jesus did not promise the repentant thief admission to "paradise" but only to the (purgatorial) "world of spirits." Does the Greek word allow for that? Given the deep divisions in the Church of England these days (conservatives, liberals, and evangelicals), one sometimes wonders if the whole thing will break apart in spectacular fashion. Do you think it will? Regarding the imputation of sin to Adam and Eve when they hadn't yet any knowledge of good and evil, might the first bite have been innocent, though imparting moral knowledge, which told them it would be sinful to keep eating, but they did anyway? What are the top 5 books that were serious contenders but ultimately did not make it into the canon? What are the top 5 books that made it into the canon by the skin of their teeth? Khalil Ibn Ahmad (d. 786â??787 CE) wrote: "The Sabians believe they belong to the prophet Noah, they read the Psalms, and their religion looks like Christianity." Were these remnant communities of Noahides/Theophobias? What do you make of the apparent confusion between Noah and Hermes in these early Islamic writings? The birth year range for Irenaeus is either 115-125CE or 130-142CE. What if, Irenaeus is actually the historical Polycarp, inventing his master Polycarp, his martyrdom and his connection to Papias and the Apostle John in order to boost his own authority? Might it be that Ham had sex with Noah's wife (who was not the mother of his three sons), with Canaan as the result, like the Moabites and Ammonites? If all scripture is "God-breathed" wouldn't that refer to its being breathed out, not breathed in? Thus instead of speaking of the "inspiration" of the Bible, would not we be more accurate to refer to its "expiration"? In view of Bart Ehrman's recent dismissal of the burial story as fiction, do you think he's headed for mythicism? What's the "Queen Jane Bible"? Might Galatians 4:4-5 (Jesus was "born of a woman") refer, as the phrase sometimes did, to vaginal delivery, not by C-section? Does Luke 19:26-27 advocate violence? What is the basis for the concept of the unalterable law of the Medes and Persians mentioned in Daniel 6:15?