The New Testament use of the Old Testament often seems arbitrary or bizarre to modern readers. Here I’ll suggest that Paul’s use of Genesis in Galatians 4 (while not only strange but also unfair to Hagar and over kind to Sarah) fits with thew intent of Genesis. I think this is an interesting example of God using even human weakness (Paul’s favoring of his ancestress) to reinforce his truth… what do you think?Read More →

Here’s the first of a new series of podcasts on words that pose particular difficulty because English either lacks clearly similar concepts, or the word carries quite different connotations (emotional overtones and other baggage) from the word that denotes (points to) a similar thing. The first word is hesed a key virtue in the Bible and one ascribed typically to God. That is both it typifies God’s relatiuonship with us, and God shows us what it means.  Read More →

Genesis 12 marks the beginning of the real story of the Bible. Chapters 1-11 are a prologue both to Genesis and to the Bible as a whole. They introduced us to “characters” (not least God – singular and with a capital G) and to the central issue that the Bible addresses. In chapter 12 we are introduced to Abraham, the first of the ancestors of the people God chose. Their story will fill the rest of the Old Testament. But also in Gen 12 we have to recognise what an odd choice God made. The people later on known as the Jews were neither moreRead More →

The first week’s readings covered the prologue to Genesis, the second week covers the Ancestors of Faith, the Matriarchs and Patriarchs of Israel. Here we begin to see the first outlines of God’s plan to restore a world warped and twisted by human sin. We also begin to discover what it means to be “people of faith”. The picture caption included this: ABRAHAM – PROMISE The first vertical window from the entrance on the north side represents Abraham and promise. Abraham believed God. The winding path of light blue that leads upward is symbolic of the faith of Abraham as he heard the call ofRead More →