John 8:31 – What It Means To Be Free

In John 8:31 Jesus advances His famous, if somewhat puzzling phrase, “if you are my disciples then truth will set you free”. Free from what? And how? … continue reading

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Genesis 15:3 – Abram’s Frustration

I’ve posted my translation of Genesis 15:3 in the Verse Translations Forum (in the event you may want to post a question or make a comment). On the other hand, you can also download the translation in PDF form.

By way of context, this verse and the preceding one constitute Abram’s response to God’s promise of offspring. Abram is not amused. The only other commercial translation that comes close to getting this right is the LXE (the English translation of the Greek Old Testament).


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New Perspective Videos

My previous post dealing with John MacArthur touched a nerve with me. This “New Perspective on Paul” topic is rather esoteric because, really, who wants to read theology when the rivers are clear, the weather is mild, and the Skwalas are out.

Well, book mark this page and, when time hangs heavy, take a few minutes and go through this. I think that, at the very least, you’ll come away from these videos with a view that perhaps Christian Theology and Dogma still offer lots of intellectual and spiritual wonder.

So, here you go. We have three superb overviews of the New Perspective on Paul from four established and well-respected scholars – and there are substantive differences between them, but they agree on the main idea called variegated nomism:

“God offers membership in His covenant freely and without obligation to anyone who believes and has faith in Him and His works (e.g., Jesus’ death and resurrection). However, once in the covenant you must exercise your belief through faithfulness (or, as McKnight and others call it, “allegiance”) in order to remain a member in good standing. If you die a member in good standing, you are offered salvation.”

. They’re pretty short – 10 minutes or less – and will be very much worth your time.

N.T. Wright and James Dunn

Michael Allen

Scot McKnight




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John MacArthur v N.T. Wright

It’s not clear to me that Pr. John MacArthur has read substantively any of the writings of N.T. Wright. If Pr. MacArthur has problems with Wright’s views on Justification and the New Perspective, I would very appreciate hearing why. As it stands, this video is content free. In effect, he argues that he’s correct and N.T. Wright is wrong and that’s the end of it. The man’s a dogmatist. His is a mind closed to truth1)This is not to say that N.T. Wright is correct, either. But Wright, to his credit, is willing to listen and adapt to well advanced arguments..

This is the kind of stuff that turns people away from the Church. Especially people who are used to thinking critically about life 7 days each week and who are unwilling to check their brains at the Church door each Sunday morning.

So be it, but the New Perspective’s view of Justification is well supported and defended – so much so that, apart from the literalists like MacArthur, it’s virtually mainstream today.

References   [ + ]

1. This is not to say that N.T. Wright is correct, either. But Wright, to his credit, is willing to listen and adapt to well advanced arguments.
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