There is a lot of discussion (at least there is in the online circles I move in) about claims to a doctrine of “headship” that is biblical and that means husbands should take a leadership role with respect to their their wives. Or possibly that men should over women more generally. In a recent discussion someone objected to my presentation of these issues “Headship”: What did Paul really mean? by pointing to the fact that the Bible seems on a “literal” reading to support this idea, by using “head” in e.g. Eph 5:23. This is my response.  Read More →

The psalm in Jonah 2:2-9 (2:3-10 in Hebrew) is a fine example of a thanksgiving psalm, and everything in its expression and theology would sound fine in the book of Psalms. However, on Jonah’s lips after we have heard the narrative of chapter one, it takes a different flavour. Read in its place in the flow of this book it is ironic.  Read More →

In this short series (of two podcasts) I’ll describe two things I think I know, two stakes in the ground when I come to think about the topic of “universalism” that has been much discussed (and even more an excuse for slanging matches) recently around the Bible-focused blogs. Let’s start by admitting there are many many things on this topic that we simply do not know. I list a few of the many things that I am firmly agnostic about in a blog post OK, till now I’ve held my peace, and avoided discussing that Bell fella and universalism. But….In this podcast and the nextRead More →

I has been too long since I added to my (very) slowly growing series on Jonah. So, when I saw that this magnificent little book was among the ones otherwise missing from the April carnival I could not resist. We like our stories (fairly) simple, we want to know who the goodies and the baddies are. Neither life nor the Bible are like that.  And if we think we have Jonah “pegged”, neatly boxed and labeled, then the narrator of the book has a surprise in store for us. Enjoy 🙂  Read More →

This podcast may benefit from a set of notes, either as an alternative to the audio/screencast or as a reminder (since has a high information content). It is also longer and less fun than most, so if you like miss it out unless later in the series you need to come back to it for the framework… The system suggested here is not intended to be completely scholarly and precise, far less exhaustive, rather it is meant to be simple and convenient, necessitating some approximations and simplifications. Two main genres It can be helpful to distinguish poems and songs. Not so much because songs implyRead More →