When our family goes to the local grocery store, my 10 year old son and I often find ourselves in the seafood section admiring the crabs, lobsters, clams and various other sea creatures that are waiting to become someone’s dinner. (more…)
The Armour of God is such a powerful image. It is a very physical representation of our spiritual need to protect ourselves from, as it states, the fiery darts of the wicked. For today’s blog, I hope to provide some context to the imagery so that you might better understand the message. We should not read too much into the analogies that are made between the armour and their spiritual equivalents. It is not like roman armour was designed specifically with Christian principles in mind. Paul is making a comparison that may not be perfect, but it gets the point across. (more…)
Imagine that life’s journey is a mountain where financial, emotional or whatever other success you aspire to is at the peak, and we climb through our life towards this final goal. We often measure how well we are doing on our climb against how others are fairing. The further along someone is in a career, marriage, or in building relationships of trust, the higher up they are. Those who have developed gentleness, patience and kindness are closer to the ideal that we are all trying to achieve. (more…)
I have been to all sorts of award ceremonies, some better attended than others but they are all the same. The quality of the production is almost always determined by the number of people who want to attend. Every association I have been a part of holds award ceremonies to recognize their best. The academy awards are no different than any other; the difference is simply in the number of people who want to watch. (more…)
Much has been posted of late on social media concerning immigration and refugees. Those who oppose allowing refugees into the country will post various inflammatory claims and half truths to convince us they are protecting us from violent extremists. Those in favour are equally guilty of exaggerating the truth by trying to convince us that we are their only hope, and our economy will collapse without them. (more…)
One of the most iconic figures in Jewish history is King David; his humble beginnings, his valiant rise to glory, and his tragic fall from grace. It is his humble beginnings that interest me. It is not a story of an underdog, rather a lesson of not prejudging or drawing conclusions from what amounts to false assumptions. (more…)
In my last blog, I covered the development of the Old Testament. A Brief History of how the Bible came to be: Old Testament. Today I am going to cover what we know of the development of the Bible after the time of Christ.
By New Testament times, Palestine was a very cosmopolitan place with most citizens being multilingual. If you read my previous blog, you can imagine, Jews would have spoken Hebrew, Aramaic, Egyptian and Greek; and with the expansion of Rome, yet another foreign empire to oppress the children of Israel, they would have learned Latin as well. When you consider Jesus communicated with a Roman centurion (Matt 8:5-13), Pontius Pilate (John 18:28-38), discussed the Torah with religious leaders at age 12 (luke 2:28-52), and spoke with a Samaritan women ( John 4:4-26), it seems Jesus was likely conversant in at least the four languages of Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek and Latin.
The Christian bible as we have it today, varied in versions as it is, went through numerous incarnations before the canon was finally established in the 7th Century AD. In this entry, I am providing a brief history of how the Old Testament came about. There are a few words that pop up when discussing the bible and I have listed them here so that you don’t get confused:
Scripture – inspired writings which may or may not be accepted as part of official canon.
Canon– list of specific scripture that are accepted as authoritative.
Vulgate – 4th century Latin translation of the bible, published in 382 AD by Jerome.
Pentateuch – also known as The Law, includes the first 5 books of the bible, also known as the torah.
Septuagint– translation of Hebrew bible into Koine Greek, also known as the Greek Old Testament
Targum and Peshitta – the Targum is the Jewish translation of the old testament into Aramaic; the Peshitta is the Christian translation, also known as the Syriac.
Extant – still in existence, surviving. Extant manuscripts are early or original manuscripts that are still in existence.
Diaspora – dispersion of Jews beyond Israel. Occurred in 600 BC and 70 AD.
Hebrew – a Semitic language of the children of Israel; a member of the ancient people living in Israel and Palestine and descendants of Jacob.
Tanakh – Hebrew bible.
Torah – specifically means the five books of Moses, but is also used to refer to the collective Jewish scriptures.
Talmud – the spoken torah (more…)
For the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, commonly known as the Mormon church, there are 4 canons of scriptures.
• The Bible
• The Book of Mormon
• The Doctrine and Covenants
• Pearl of Great Price
Most Christian religions exclusively use the bible with various differences. The Catholic Bible contains what many refer to as apocryphal books for example. Most English speaking Protestants rely on the King James Version of the Bible. The LDS church is perhaps unique in that it accepts additional books that are not related to the biblical narrative.
Here is a brief explanation of each of the texts: (more…)