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The Bible Geek Show

The Bible Geek Show

Dr. Robert M. Price answers questions submitted to him at [email protected]

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The Bible Geek Podcast 20-004

What do you make of the young man in the loin cloth, a.k.a. the Naked Fugitive, present at Jesus' arrest? Where does F.C. Baur claim that Acts uses Simon Magus to stand for Paul? Does Deuteronomy 22:5? prohibition of cross-dressing fit in the Mary Douglas?s discussion of Israelite taxonomy? What is your view of speaking in tongues as described in the epistles and acts? When did people stop viewing the books that became the Bible as books written by people about God's interaction with the world and begin seeing them with some higher view of inspiration, as God's own words? What was Dr. Albert Schweitzer's contribution to biblical scholarship and how is he now regarded? Do you think that Mark may have used Josephus as a source?
2020-03-20
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The Bible Geek Podcast 20-003

Is the Talpiot Tomb in East Jerusalem the Tomb of Jesus Christ and His Family as well as His Parents and close relatives? Why do we not have a binity rather than a trinity? Where did the notion of the Holy Ghost come from? The noun ?Elohim? has three basic uses in the Hebrew scriptures: the One God, lesser deities, and very prominent saints, as with Abraham (Gen. 23:6) and Samuel (1 Samuel 28:13). Is the 3rd perhaps the root of an 'exaltation theology' that would later be applied to Jesus? In Exodus 4:21 and many times in Exodus 7-11, it is written that "Pharaoh's heart was hard" and that "Pharaoh's heart was hardened". The Hebrew word translated "hardened" can also mean ?strengthened.? This is said in tandem with God promising great signs and wonders. Could this mean God would by this means encourage Pharaoh to yield, but that he still resisted? What is your estimation of Bishop Spong?s scholarly work? Do you think the Protestant emphasis on Sola Scriptura is actually making an idol of the Bible? Who are your favorite conservative NT scholars and why? Is the philosophy of history espoused by Fichte/Hegel integral to Tübingen scholarship (e.g., F.C. Baur)?
2020-02-29
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The Bible Geek Podcast 20-002

Could the Sermon on the Mount have been a non or pre-Christian text incorporated by Christians and attributed to Jesus? Aren?t the Passion stories of various savior cults a revived version of the Chaoskampf myth?  Would you share some of your thoughts about the book/prophet Amos? Can you discuss Christian views on reincarnation? Is there a precedent for it in the early church or even the New Testament itself? Why are the disciples denigrated as lower class dullards in the gospels? What do you think of the theory that Rabbi Akiva rewrote the OT?
2020-01-26
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The Bible Geek Podcast 20-001

Pagan Greek trinities? On his first visit to Jerusalem, Paul "tried to associate with the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he was a disciple." (Acts 9:26) Fitzmyer's commentary says these were just Jerusalem Christians as opposed to the Twelve. Does that sound right to you? Or, is it more like the term "apostle" in this sense? Acts 9:29 says "[Paul] also used to speak and debate with the Hellenists, but they kept trying to kill him." Fitzmyer says in this case ?Hellenists? can't mean Jewish Christians, but rather just Jews. But isn't Acts pretty consistent in using "Hellenists" to describe Jewish Christians, like Stephen & the Gang who get recruited to go wait tables? If so ... KILL HIM? How could Paul lack the authority to draw the Corinthians, whom he evangelized, away from missionaries of James and have such a struggle in this community, yet, when he went to Rome in the account in Acts he could summon the Jewish leadership to him and they would listen to him?  Can you say something about ?liberation theology?, the idea that the gospel is literally good news to the poor. And, why did this theology take off in Latin America? Might Jesus? Gethsemane prayer about the cup passing from him originally have belonged to the Last Supper context? And then might it reflect the story of Joseph dining with his brothers with reference to Joseph?s cup of divination? If so, may we infer that Jesus was using such a cup and passed it among his disciples, each of whom addressed the cup asking ?Is it I, Lord (i.e., God)?? Jesus then looks into it and sees that Judas? question got the ?yes.? In light of the Lot story where he has sex with his daughter, begetting the no-good Ammonites and Moabites, obviouslydisapproving of incest, how could Abraham speak of his marrying his half sister? Wasn?t the Temple of Solomon borrowed from the Egyptian story of the temple at Karnak built by Amenhoteop III? Both stories have a Hiram of Tyre, and many of the children of David and Solomon have very similar names when compared to those of Amenhotep III. What do you think of the bible authors rewriting Egyptian history as their own jewish history ?
2020-01-10
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-029

Re: the Bible?s stance on alcohol, what about Jesus' own drinking as in Matt. 11:18-19? Are you familiar with Norman Golb and his book, Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls, and if so, what do you think? Does Mark?s negative depiction of Jesus? disciples and relatives reflect enmity between Jewish and Gentile/Pauline factions? Why does the author of ?The Second Treatise of the Great Seth? speak so mockingly of the heroes of the OT? .  Brandon suggests we need not worry that passages or whole epistles by Paul were censored since some pretty disturbing material still appears in the Pauline Corpus. Think so?  If I understand you correctly, we agree that Simon Magus is at the root of this belief system advanced by the ?works of Paul? (stuff about the law and a judging, punishing God are out).  So Simon?s philosophy and writings would be considered source material.  Is there any uncontaminated remnant of this belief system?               What do you think of the idea that there was no historical "Nazareth" until someone pointed at a place and told the patron saint of credulity, the Empress Helena (Mother of Constantine), "Yeah, this is Nazareth."? You once said you rejected the notion in Atwill?s Caesar?s Messiah that the Romans had a part in creating the gospels and that they were engaged in a sort of esoteric satire which resulted in Christians unwittingly worshiping Titus instead of Jesus. I was wondering why you think this is such an incredible theory, isn't this precisely what happened in your case? Sure sounds like the jokes on you!
2019-12-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-028

Is there any apologetic for T-totaling other than the idea of setting a good example? What is the Biblical view of suicide?  Was early Christian worship based on Jewish worship or influenced by pagan religion? What?re your thoughts on Neville Goddard?s books and lectures?  Could the name of the Gnostic Demiurge ?Yaldabaoth? derive from the Iranian celebration of the night of the winter solstice as Shab-e Yalda, literally, "the night of Yalda"? What do you think of the Bible critics Dr. Bruce M. Metzger and F.F. Bruce who think that the New Testament is historically absolutely correct? Back in the 70s, when the American population was so much more Christian then, were Evangelicals confident based on this strength in numbers, or was there a feeling of alarm, a sense of losing ground, because of the counterculture's gains since the late 60s?
2019-12-06
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-027

I noticed that ?????????? (Ierosolyma) was used in Galatians 1:17-18 and 2:1, while in other places Paul seemed to favor ?????????? (Ierousal?m), in particular Galatians 4:25-26; Romans 15:19; 15:25-26; and 1 Corinthians 16:3. If there is not a grammatical difference between how they are used, I was wondering what might explain the difference in usage. Jewish tradition describes Solomon working magic with a ring bearing the Star of David . The same symbol occurs in modern occultism, e.g., Crowler. Is there a connection?  Might Matthew?s ?magoi? in his Nativity story have originally been ?Parsees,? denoting Pharisees? Why does Acts seem to show James humiliating Paul? Could you list a couple of earlier scholars--let's say at least mid-20th century or earlier--whose work you think is essential and really holds up despite any more recent scholarship, and also maybe a couple to avoid because their work doesn't? What would you say is the best example of bible prophecy, shows the least amount of foul play? You expressed your changing views on the possibility that Romans would have had reason to invent some version of the Jesus story / Christianity. Romans propagating a nonviolent religion for their troublesome Jewish subjects makes sense to me, but my question is historical: can you think of examples of what seems almost like a state-imposed religion, especially in centuries close to the birth of Christianity? In SGF Brandon's "Fall of Jerusalem and the Christian Church" he seems to hold that Mark cold not have fabricated Jewish involvement in Jesus? death on the grounds that it would contradict most people?s beliefs! What gives? Martin Luther seems to distinguish between the ?guilt? and ?penalty? of sin. What does he mean?
2019-11-20
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-026

Reading of "The Theology of Preacher". In Mark 16,:2, should we translate "on the first day of the week" or "the first sabbath"? Help identifying [Campbellite] sect? Was Nietzsche'e mad man based on Diogenes? Does "the perfect" in 1 Cor. 13:10 refer to the canon of scripture?
2019-10-27
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-025

Is there a parallel between how rock groups become ?classic? and how Christian writings became canonical? I?d like to hear your considerations on a controversial book I recently came across, "The Jewish Revolutionary Spirit" (and its impact on world history) by Dr. E. Michael Jones. Could you talk a bit about why you believe in Q, and to what degree of certainty you hold those views? Would you say that sometimes a bit of fantasy regarding the afterlife and the spiritual life might be beneficial? Please comment on James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the Development of the Synoptic Tradition. I?d like you to speculate, from a mythicist point of view, how the gospel gets from Jerusalem to the wider Greek speaking world, from which comes canonical Mark. 
2019-10-16
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-024

Does Luke give Jesus an age of ?about 30? because that was the age at which a priest could be ordained, and he wanted to set Jesus up as a priest as in Hebrews? Wouldn?t the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil allow us to distinguish the morality of actions? Especially if God made us in his own image, including his morality? Why should something be good necessarily because it comes from God? It is states that God not only produces good things, but also bad things (?I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.? Isaiah 54:7).   Since Catholics pray to saints as well as Christ and God, why do we consider that to be monotheism? Why does Psalm 40 read completely differently in 2 different Bibles? Various possible uses of the genetic fallacy in religion?
2019-09-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-023

In Matthew 16:15-16 is Jesus being Socratic, testing whether the disciples have figured out he is the Messiah? If Polycarp wrote 2 Timothy and Titus but not 1 Timothy, who did write 1 Timothy?Irenaeus? Would that imply he compiled the 1st editon of the NT canon, too? Do you consider yourself an agnostic or an atheist? And would you please elaborate? Can you talk about the introduction of baptism into Christianity? Are there just 3 major branches of Christianity? What do you think of recent scholarly claims that there were no dying & rising gods? Historically, leaders of radical movements have been matched with counter figureheads, leaders of opposing factions. Jesus in the gospels is not. Might that imply non-historicity? Does the NT envision Christian believers as not having to stand trial before God? You say that Jesus could not have said the line in Matthew 16:24 about anyone wishing to be his disciple has to "take up his cross and follow me" because the hearers wouldn't have been able to make sense of it (as Jesus hadn't been crucified ). But Zealots got crucified, too. Couldn?t it have been a Zealot recruiting slogan?
2019-09-07
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-022

Producer's Note: There are some audio artifacts in this episode, my apologies. What would have been motivating early church fathers to twist the identity of Simon Magus into a fictional Paul of Tarsus or vice versa? To what extent do you believe that there was a real Paul who had such a valuable reputation that producing such forgeries would be worth the time and effort? Which early church father would you be comfortable saying is the real mccoy?   Do you generally like the Anchor Bible commentaries, and are there any particular volumes you'd recommend? The Washington Post recently had a front-page story about Brazilian gang members whose lives are threatened by rival gangs ("One Way Out:  Pastors in Brazil Converting Gang Members on YouTube").  A certain popular televangelist, Rev. Arnaldo Barros, offers to publish their conversion to Christianity on social media, in which they confess their sins and renounce their gang affiliation and activity.  The converts gain immunity from retribution by rival gangs and their own. What kind of antecedents are there, Biblical or otherwise, for this practice?   Given the lack or archeological evidence of the exodus from Egypt, is it possible that later Hebrews created the "bondage in Egypt" story to obfuscate their origins as Hapirus,a class of rebels and slaves? Luke 22:29 has Jesus tell the Twelve "I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred on me, so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel." However, the Twelve at that point included Judas. So did Jesus make a mistake, or did he actually intend for the traitor Judas to retain his throne despite handing him over? Is there a connection between Lazarus? raising from the dead (John 11:38-44), the theory that Lazarus is the beloved disciple in John (based on John 11:3) and the tradition (addressed in John 21:20-23) that the beloved disciple would not die, or not die before the Parousia?  
2019-08-28
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-021

1 Samuel 5:9, in Jerome?s Latin Vulgate, features a strange half verse following the description of the Philistines of Gath being smitten with hemorrhoids: ?And while they were carrying [the Ark of the Covenant] about, the hand of the Lord came upon every city with an exceeding great slaughter:  and he smote the men of every city, both small and great, and they had emerods in their secret parts. And the Gethites consulted together, and made themselves seats of skins.? Where could Jerome have found such a reading? Why do Protestant and Catholics celebrate Easter a week earlier than Orthodox and Coptic Christians? When is the earliest known celebration of Easter?  If I was going to pick one edition of the New Testament to read, which one would you recommend?  Maybe one with informative footnotes to set things in context. I'm wondering how connected Yahweh and Jesus are to their physical bodies. I'm wondering if the spirit of Jesus is henceforth permanently connected to his body. By what means does Jesus connect with humans on earth from that point on because his body is in heaven? Does Dr. Robert Eisenman think that Jesus Christ did not exist as a historical figure? Does Dr. Robert Eisenman think that New Testament is historically unreliable? What was the point of including the story of the magi visiting Jesus at his birth? If Matthew is the most Jewish gospel, what do a bunch of Persians have to do with the birth of the Messiah?
2019-08-10
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-020

1 Samuel 5:9, in Jerome?s Latin Vulgate, features a strange half verse following the description of the Philistines of Gath being smitten with hemorrhoids: ?And while they were carrying [the Ark of the Covenant] about, the hand of the Lord came upon every city with an exceeding great slaughter:  and he smote the men of every city, both small and great, and they had hemorrhoids in their secret parts. And the Gethites consulted together, and made themselves seats of skins.? Where could Jerome have found such a reading? Why do Protestant and Catholics celebrate Easter a week earlier than Orthodox and Coptic Christians? When is the earliest known celebration of Easter?  If I was going to pick one edition of the New Testament to read, which one would you recommend?  Maybe one with informative footnotes to set things in context. I'm wondering how connected Yahweh and Jesus are to their physical bodies. I'm wondering if the spirit of Jesus is henceforth permanently connected to his body. By what means does Jesus connect with humans on earth from that point on because his body is in heaven? Does Dr. Robert Eisenman think that Jesus Christ did not exist as a historical figure? Does Dr. Robert Eisenman think that New Testament is historically unreliable? What was the point of including the story of the magi visiting Jesus at his birth? If Matthew is the most Jewish gospel, what do a bunch of Persians have to do with the birth of the Messiah?
2019-07-25
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-019

I remember once hearing that even though they don?t believe in cremation, Catholics burn what they believe to be the leftover body and blood of Christ on a weekly bases, effectively cremating Jesus over and over again. How do Catholics make sense of burning the body of Jesus in bread form? I was told that a great many Christian sub sects all believe in what was laid out in the Nicene Creed and therefore despite their differences are "close enough" when it comes rapture time, and that the Vatican agreed. My Catholic friends have since told me otherwise. Which is true? Do you see any hints in the Bible suggesting that Israelite religion originated in Totemism? There are two mutually inconsistent tales of the nativity of Jesus, one placing him in Bethlehem, the other in Nazareth. If Jesus were a fiction, why didn't they come up with a standard nativity story? I would like to know what you think most likely was the original story of the passion in the canonical Gospels. Was Jesus just another dying and rising god? Was it an escape from death and direct abduction to heaven like Hercules, Romulus, Empedocles, etc. not to mention some old testament figures who escaped death? Or a Simonian myth in which Jesus performs a magic switch by turning himself into Simon of Cyrene's likeness and thus he ends up crucified instead of Jesus?  What do you make of the recent meeting between the Mormon President and the Pope? Why do you suspect the Gospel of Judas is a modern forgery? When Jesus says that the kingdom of heaven won?t come with signs but will be sudden could he be referring to the moment of an un expected death? What do you think of Joan Taylor?s idea that the Essenes were great doctors a well as cronies of Herod?
2019-07-21
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-018

Matthew 12:42 has Jesus say, "The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon's wisdom, and now one greater than Solomon is here." This seems extremely odd from any kind of Christian perspective. Is God calling character witnesses at judgment? How exactly is the Queen of Sheba relevant? What qualifies her to provide any input: she is presumably a pagan, even if she recognized Solomon's wisdom some thousand years earlier? And what is it she's supposed to do? She rises from the dead, scans the crowd comprising "this generation"--apparently judgment is being handled by generation for administrative efficiency--and confirms that, yep, anyone who didn't recognize Jesus as superior to Solomon should indeed go to hell? How do you translate Mark 14: 33-34? What would you require as substantial proof that an historical Jesus existed? In Hyam Maccoby's "The Mythmaker: Paul and the Invention of Christianity" he says that Jesus and his followers were Pharisees. Eisenman says they were Zealot-Essenes. Whom you side with? Would Maccoby have had all the same information Eisenman had to reach his late-1990s conclusion of Zealot-Essenism when he (Maccoby) reached his mid-1980s claim of Pharisaism?
2019-07-01
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-017

Do we have any good historical data and theoretical conceptions for why and how Christianity appealed so much to and spread so vastly within the Greco-Roman world in the first few centuries ACE? Doesn?t Genesis 6:19 imply a significant diminution in the power of God who, a few chapters before, had CREATED all living things? Why round up all the animals? Couldn?t God have just created them anew after the flood? We know that Zoroastrianism had a profound impact on second temple theology, but could the reverse have also occurred. Could the angel mythology and sacred fires of the first temple cult have influenced Zoroastrianism? Do you know people who actually have memorized the Bible, all of it, and could demonstrate it?
2019-06-07
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-016

1 Timothy 4:3,4 says, "the inspired word clearly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith...  They forbid marriage and command people to abstain from foods that God created to be partaken of with thanksgiving ... " (New World Translation) . Who is the author talking about? And, what "inspired word" does he have in mind (I can't find one that says this)?  Could you speak about the earliest state adoption(s) of Christianity and the impact this had on the development and trajectory of the faith? What is your opinion on the historicity of Mary? What is ?Abraham?s bosom? as found in Luke 16:22-23? What is the historical context and background reasoning for why Jesus is depicted as using Psalm 82 as a proof text in John 10?  Do you have any book/article recommendations on calendars in the ancient world? Is the contradiction between Acts 9:7 and Acts 22:9 simply a problem of the KJV translation? We speak of Christian borrowing from pagan sources, but are there cases where pagans borrowed Christian elements? Is there a clear verse or agreed upon interpretation in Christianity that states that if an ?hidden? sinner or unrepentant person exists in the congregation, the Holy Spirit will leave til he is gone?
2019-06-01
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-015

Do you think the Bible teaches a literal burning hell, or is it more a metaphor like outer darkness? Matthew reads this way in this NIV, "From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it." Does this refer to the rapid expansion of the gospel faith or to the persecution of its preachers? Matt 10:23 says, ?truly I say to you, you will by no means complete the circuit of the cities of Israel until the Son of man arrives.? Does this mean that the preaching work will not be completed before Jesus comes back to judge everyone? If so, it seems unfair to those who didn?t get the chance to hear it. You?ve explained that the bible is a patchwork of various authors writing in different times, different styles, and for various purposes using the same characters, or variations on similar themes. This is just like the reboots, retcons, and contradictions in superhero comics, right Proverbs 3:5, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding." (KJV) seems to me to be a rather ingenious bit of priestcraft, as on the surface, it admonishes believers not to think things through for themselves, so by inference, they ought to leave that to the ecclesiastical authorities. Think so? What is going on with the connections in the gospels between Jonah, John the Baptist, Oannes, and Peter?and the waters? Can you remind me, what is the historical context and meaning of the prohibitions listed in Acts 15:19-20? MythVision Podcast video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PSJ64C7dk0k
2019-05-28
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-014

What does the Geek think? Is Canaan the victim of some mixed up sources, a hidden castration story, or some other possibility that I?m missing? We see a historical pattern of vilification of a wartime enemy, the vanquishing of that enemy, and the subsequent romanticization, extolment, and assimilation of the subdued culture by the victor. Don?t we also find it in the Bible? Would you please comment on how shifting attitudes toward Jews and Jewish culture are reflected in the new testament, its development, and early Christian history?  How and why does the new testament both vilify and extol Jews?  A listener asked about Paul?s ?thorn in the flesh?. Your interpretation of bar-wielding angels inspired me to a slightly different interpretation. A skolops can be any pointed thing from a splinter to a thorn to a pike to a palisade log. In between those extremes, it could also be a spear. We have Paul, speaking of journeying to the Heavens, Satan afflicting him, asking Kyrios (?Lord?) thrice that it might pass from him, and Kyrios refusing to lift the burden. That sounds to me a little like a condensed version of the Garden of Gethsemane with the Longinus spearing from John. Is it possible that John and Paul took this concept from a common (now lost) motif of the suffering servant? How can you reconcile the work of Robert Eisenman, Charles Cutler Torrey and the mythicism movement? Can you list any books, chapters, or portions of the New and Old Testament that are likely borrowings from texts from older civilizations?
2019-05-01
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-013

Does 1 Corinthians 12:3 mean that no one can come to believe in Christ apart from a special revelation direct from God? Are there Gnostic and/or Calvinist implications? Is it impossible for God to exist? Are there any good alternative theories to the single authorship of Luke-Acts?  I notice that John the Baptist was executed by Herod, while Jesus was executed by Roman authority, why the difference?
2019-04-14
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-012

Is it true that "by Hebrew tradition when the day of the month is not specifically stated, it is given to be the first day of that month"?  April 6th 32 A.D. is a Sunday, and not even Nisan 14 but Nisan 6? Given that Jesus died on a Friday, and Nisan 14 in 32 A.D. is on a Monday, how can Misler claim 32 A.D. is an "exact" fulfillment of the prediction in Daniel 9?  Ever read Asimov?s Guide to the Bible? Is Deuteronomy 22:28-29 talking about rape or seduction? Is it possible that the original "Jesus" was not called Jesus and that was the name they gave him later, as was the case wirh many many OT Hebrew characters have their names changed to fit meanings, including Jacob (Israel) Esau (Red), Abram, Sarah.  After the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, who do Lot?s daughters think they?re the only ones left alive on Earth? Why would we Gentile Christians have to keep the Ten Commandments when, according to James & Co. in Acts, all we had to do was avoid bloody meat, fornication, animals that had been strangled, and food sacrificed to idols? I?d be interested to hear your current thinking on Gnosticism and it?s place in the world.
2019-04-01
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-011

What are the biblical limits of divine revelation? If God nis omniscient, and ?we have the mind of Christ,? why do we not know everything? Why do some prophecies remain unfulfilled? Why does the Bible know nothing of modern science? Please recommend a book on the origins and evolution of religion(s). Richard Carrier talks about the possible early dating of Hebrews as a pre 70 statement of a fully mythic Christ who had not yet been historicized. What do you think of that idea? Do you know of anyone else who has talked about Melchizedek as a pre 70 cult figure? Is there any other evidence for an early date of Hebrews which would support the Christ myth theory? Can you can expand more broadly on some historically prominent Christian concepts of what it meant to be inspired when writing scripture? How can the biblical writers have exhibited their own personal style if God was simply revealing their text to them?
2019-03-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-010

In Luke baby Jesus is presented at the Temple 40 days after Jesus's birth.How do apologists handle this contradiction, as compared to the events described in Matthew (the flight to Egypt)? After all, the holy family could not both flee to Egypt and present at the Temple 40 days later. Does the author of John identifies himself in John 21:24? The idea of a dying Messiah appears to have gained popularity during the 2nd century A.D. particularly since the death of Simeon Bar Kokhba. Therefore, why is it impossible that the idea a dying Messiah actually came in earlier than the 2nd centuary A.D, say, 50 years earlier with the new cult of Christianity? I know that the supposed OT "prophecies" were never intended to be about Jesus or the Messiah at all. But, as you can easily use them in a Messianic way (like Early Christians did), why can?t they have made the entire thing up? Is it possible that the entire Jospehus passage on Jesus was a interpolation by Christian scribes, and could the same be true of Tacitus? Isn?t ?Do you believe in God?? a loaded question? Better to say ?do you believe in any gods?? Exactly what kinds of ?morals? are actually set out in the Bible (stoning to death, massacres, collecting heaps of foreskins as a dowry, and so on)?   Aren?t those who say ?but without heaven and hell what?s to stop you from (raping and pillaging and murdering) implying that?s what they?d be busy doing if they didn?t believe? Have you read Asimov?s Guide to the Bible and what do you think of it? What non-canon books do you think are most interesting/worth reading? What would you suggest as the simplest and most potent way to explain why one doesn?t believe there was a historical Jesus? What would be perhaps the top 3 ?must read? for people interested in Higher Criticism? In Matthew 8:5-13, the story of healing the centurion's leprous servant, how does the centurion show the faith that apparently amazes Jesus so that he says "I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith"? All he did was ask for healing. And what was the content of that faith? Not faith in the Pauline gospel certainly! What does Jesus mean by "follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead"?
2019-03-11
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-009

Could you outline the work of Thomas J. J. Altizer, his work, the context of his contribution, the significance - and how it has influenced your own thinking and work? How did ?Lucifer? turn into ?Satan?? In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells us not to pray, fast, etc., in public because then they will have ?received their reward in full.? What sort of reward? Private piety brings reward in heaven. But doesn't the idea of a reward contradict the idea of the good deed in the first place?  How old is the apologist claim that ?microevolution? occurs only within ?kinds,? and there is no ?macroevolution? from one ?kind? into another?
2019-03-05
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-008

What is the oldest textual reference for John the Baptist? Did Mark describe John the Baptist as wearing a camel-hair shirt and eating locusts? Could Mark be a redacted version of the Marcion gospel? Are you aware of anyone who has tried to apply a Marcionite lens to Mark and what is the best secondary source on Marcionite theology? Have you ever heard of the 'Recovery Bible' (translated from Polish) and what are your thoughts on bibles with excessive annotations? Could the name Peter (Cephas) in the bible be a mistranslation? Please comment on Arthur Darby Nock and the current view of his work. What is the true meaning of the parable of the Prodigal Son? In the end of Mark (chapters 15, 16), why are there different descriptions for Mary the mother of Jesus? Did Bruce Metzger believe Gnosticism influenced Christianity, and what does that mean for Bart Ehrman?
2019-02-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-007

Is Mark 9:42-50 necessarily talking about a heavenly afterlife?. What on earth does this mean? "Everyone will be salted with fire.? In the feeding of the 5,000 and the 4,000, do the numbers of loaves at the beginning and afterward mean anything, especially as relates to disciples and their relative success or importance? Recently, it occurred to me that the apocryphal gospel of Peter has some strangely close parallels with the Sumerian myth of Inanna in the underworld. I have a question about Matthew 5:25-26. Matthew 5:21-32 are basically saying, "not only can you not do X, you shouldn't even THINK about X!" But all of a sudden verses 25 and 26 sound more like a first-century version of "hey, resolve your issues quickly or the doggone court system will bleed you dry." Unlike what precedes and follows, there doesn't seem to be anything especially moral about it, and it doesn't follow the format of "avoid [sin], yes, but also avoid [minor version of sin]?. Is it an interpolated proverb? Would the hypothetical gospel sources Mark, Q, L, M, etc., count as independent sources for a historical Jesus? Why didn't Jerusalem play a bigger role in the growth of Christianity? When did the idea of a canonical Bible occur to people? Did such an idea exist prior to the Septuagint? Or was it thought of more as an evolving collection? Bruce Metzger speculates that, if a new Pauline letter were to be discovered, the church would have to determine if it added anything to what our familiar Pauline epistles teach. If so, it might be added to the canon. But by this criterion, should we drop any familiar Pauline writings that are redundant? And if a new one did add something important, wouldn?t it be rejected, its novelty considered heresy? Is there a way to reconcile the spiritual resurrection of Jesus in 1 Corinthians 15 with the fleshly resurrection in Luke 24?
2019-02-02
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-006

Supposedly, today among western scholars, there's agreement that we know more about the historicity of Jesus than we do about the historicity of Mohamed. What does Dr. Price think about that? Luke 23:43 (NIV): ?Jesus answered him, "Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise," but the New World Translation has: ?Truly I tell you today, you will be with me in Paradise.? The position of the coma changes the meaning. Yet, there was no punctuation when the gospels were written. Which is the correct translation? You?ve downplayed the research of Karen King who said there was no such thing as Gnosticism. Have you changed your opinion? Doesn?t the notion of a fiery Hell come from the reference to Gehenna, a physical location near Jerusalem where bodies were burned in a pit.  Over time this came to refer to a pit of damnation for sinners.This along with the "devil" presiding over it seem to be fairly modern ideas which were written about much later than the original bible. In Holy Fable, Vol. 1, speaking of the plagues of Egypt, "The story-tellers have thus retained some 'local color' without realizing that these were fairly common and altogether natural events. They assumed these disasters were unique, miraculous occurrences. This means that the stories were told very far away from Egypt. It?s as if someone did not know what had actually destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki and said it was Godzilla." Might the Japanese have come up with all those silly monsters to process feelings/memories of the horrors of the war while not openly attacking their conquerors? If Christianity began as a mystery religion, with adherents being told the secret once they rose high enough, who is to say Catholicism isn't STILL a mystery religion? Do we really know what bishops and cardinals say among themselves about the historicity of Jesus? I was recently asked by a co-worker what the Holy Spirit was as a member of the Trinity and I must say I do not have a good answer. Do you? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2019-01-31
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-005

Producer's Note: There is a lot of noise and buzz in this episode. I did what I could without distorting the good Doctor's voice too much, but I do apologize for the poor audio quality. Concerning Papias's comments on Mark using Peter as a source, you suggest Papias may have not been referring to canonical Mark but to "the Ebionite work The Preachings of Peter.?Are you referring to Kerygmata Petrou which was written about A.D. 200? When you mention the Infancy Gospel of Matthew, do you mean the Infancy Gospel of Matthew the same as The Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew from the 7th century?  Is 1 John a coherent work or a patchwork quilt of successive redaction? Just how gnostic is 1 John? Does Paul's famous teaching in Romans 5:18-19 support or contradict any of the historic theories of the Atonement? Is it the major influence on Christian soteriology?: Hebrews 5:8 says of Jesus, ?he learned obedience through what he suffered.? But when I think of various NT writings, including what I recall of the rest of Hebrews itself, I don't recall anything about Jesus having "learned obedience" through his suffering. But elsewhere in the NT we get the impression that he suffered because he was obedient. What gives? You?ve compared Galatians 1:11-12, where Paul says that he learned his gospel through revelation, with 1 Corinthians 11:23, where Paul tells the Corinthians that he delivered to them what he also received. You seem to accept the view that these two passages do in fact contradict each other. But Earl Doherty and Richard Carrier read the 1 Corinthians passage in light of, and as consistent with, the line from Galatians, such that in 1 Corinthians, when Paul speaks of receiving a teaching, Doherty and Carrier argue that this reception was through revelation. Why do you think different? You said you were persuaded by John Dominic Crossan's argument about the Cross Gospel. Yet since then, you?ve made no mention of the Cross Gospel at points when doing so would have logically fit. What is your current thinking on the proposed Cross Gospel? What do most mainstream biblical scholars make of Crossan's proposal? What did you mean when you said that even if you accepted various alternative synoptic source theories, it wouldn't make much difference regarding Q? When Catholics pray that the sacrifice of Christ be made present in the Mass, are they asking that Jesus be killed again? Please explain how Zoroastrianism influenced Judaism.
2019-01-26
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-004

Is there much genuine Higher Criticism being done today? Is SATAN! a kind of mythological Frankenstein monster and if yes what parts was he sown together from? In the first few chapters of the book of Genesis, does God create the first humans or his version of humankind, a sort of prototype of what humans should be based on his will/desire, unlike the humans other gods have created before him ? What do you know of the work of Dr. Ashraf Ezzat, who argues that the translators of the Septuagint changed the setting of the Old Testament from Arabia to Egypt? Did the writer of 2nd Timothy 2:4 leave us a clue about division in the early church or even worse reveal that not everyone thought Jesus had returned? Was the idea that Paul hailed from Tarsus really borrowed from 2 Maccabees 3:5 and 4:4? What was the purpose of the Deuteronomic Reform? Was this where Judaism decided it needed an Orthodoxy, and went with the most mainstream books, and eliminated what might of band "Sect books, in other words books belonging to a smaller Jewish group not part of the mainstream, and this is why things like Enoch,Jubilees,Tobit,Baruch and others are not part of the cannon today? What is your opinion on Enoch 2 and 3? Are the very old books or more later forgeries? Would things such as Horoscopes count as blasphemy against the holy spirit? What are the Local Church and the Plymouth Brethren?
2019-01-20
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-003

In a recent (or, recent to me) episode, you said the Reformation was, to some extent, based on how one shouldn't read secret meanings into the Bible.  Can you elaborate on this?    Can you shed any light on Passover terminology in Hebrew and Greek?: Is there any historical reason to think that John the Baptist was beheaded on Herods birthday? It seems to "foreshadowed" by Pharoah beheading the cupbearer on his birthday. I know that the gospels often say events in the OT "foreshadow" events in Jesus life.  What can we know or surmise about the Jerusalem Church led by James? What does Paul mean by ?Lord?? He often writes ?the Lord Jesus Christ.? What is this word ?Lord? in Greek and its meaning? What if Q was none other than one of the Jewish Christian gospels (The Gospel of the Hebrews, The Gospel of the Ebionites, The Gospel of the Twelve, or The Gospel of the Nazarenes)? Why do the lists of 10b Commandments in Exodus 20 and 34 differ? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2019-01-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-002

Did children really play at mourning? Do you happen to know of any references, preferably from the seven authenticated letters of Paul which can be used to support/confirm the consensus dates of 35 to 56 for Paul?   Isn't there a non canonical gospel that has a transfiguration like scene that actually is a resurrection appearance? And bwhy do some think the canonical transfiguration story was originally a post resurrection appearance?   I recently reread the Infancy Gospel of Thomas.   I can understand how stories of the young Jesus could come about but why in the world would someone that was a Christian of any stripe go to the trouble of writing something that makes kid Jesus look like a brat?  I mean this thing reminds me of the Twilight Zone "It's a Good Life".   Re the NRSV, aside from the absurd inclusive language thing do you have any other problems with it?  Why do mainstream scholars say that 1 Thess. was written around 50CE?  I'm curious as to what the apologetics are regarding badly answered prayers. John 4:22 says the Samaritans worship what they do not know, while the Jews worship what they do know. What do we think the authors trying to say about Samaritan beliefs exactly?  Is that believed to be historically accurate, or a mischaracterization of 1st/2nd-century CE Samaritanism? Can you explain exactly which components of rapture theology are identifiable in the Bible using historically appropriate hermeneutics, and which components are truly "not in the Bible"?   
2019-01-12
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The Bible Geek Podcast 19-001

What do you think of Jordan Peterson?s definition of ?truth? as any notion that, if believed, increases survival value? Could you enlighten us as to the Book of Enoch and the ubiquitous Watchers? And does this book and it's narrative turn into being about Satan somehow? What do you think of the Young Earth creationism apologetic that God created Adam, Eve, and earth with artificial signs of a long past? Was Jesus? teaching about heaven and hell news to his listeners, or were they all familiar notions? Has any Christian group ever taught that infants go to hell? Wouldn?t the Book of Revelation make more sense if it had been written by and for Ebionite Christians? Assuming Luke used Matthew as a source, any idea why the Genealogies are different?  Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2019-01-04
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-036

What does the Geek think would happen if we really did find something new (in the recovered Library of Herculaneum) that should objectively count as scripture rather than apocrypha? How would this affect various notions of the canon? Might Jacob?s stone pillar actually be intended as a divination dolmen? Why does Saul/Paul have two (alternative) names? In which circumstances would  each be used? Jews read Kaballah and Gematria-based interpretations into the Hebrew Bible and Catholics read references to Jesus Christ into some Old Testament phrases - do followers of other sacred texts - Hindu and Buddhist, for example - do the same? What happens in the case of priests who have been laicized, due to appalling criminal behaviour? As 'once a priest, always a priest' means that the ex-priest could administer the sacraments if he wanted to but has been told not to, does this also mean that the ontological change too cannot really be withdrawn, such that a child abuser is, effectively, an Alteri Christus? Might Paul?s ?thorn in the flesh? have been his incredible guilt over having persecuted those who are now his brethren? Is Christianity now in the process of another reformation? Was it common for critical scholars to publish anonymously or pseudonymously? Were the risks legal, or social/reputational? When did this change? Could you list fellow theologians and historians of the New Testament and early Christianity with a degree PhD who claim that Jesus Christ is a mythical figure and that the New Testament is unreliable historically? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-12-24
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-035

Could you please provide the definition for "abomination" as used in the Bible? Would you please review the history of the concept of having a personal relationship with Jesus/God? I wonder if you know of any analysis of the similarity between the sayings of early Cyrenaics and the gospels. Explain Transsubstantiation? Do John the Baptist, Peter and others have some connection with the god Oannes? On the Gnostic notion of Christ first becoming incarnate in the awakened pneumatics.
2018-12-10
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-034

Is there a connection between 1 Timothy 1:7 and Plutarch?s "Bruta Animalia Ratione Uti? (Book 4)? In addition, based on the theory that you have mentioned - that Paul?s struggles against the beasts of Ephesus was spiritual (I believe) rather than physical - is it possible that 1 Cor 15:32 is also playing on this juxtaposition of the natures of both beasts and men? Is Matthew 27:46-47 dependant on an earlier version in which Elijah has become the pilot of the sun chariot every day, and that once the sun darkens, Jesus is calling for it to reappear? Can you explain how or why the hypothesis of the gnostic redeemer came to be prominent, as Margaret Barker indicates it had been in the past, and how or why it became discredited? Is there some connection between Paul?s letters and John?s Gospel? Was Hamaan said to have been hanged from a tree/gallows or impaled on a stake? Could you please tell me what the approximate populations of Jerusalem and Galilea were after the first Roman war ending in approx. 70 CE and the third Roman war ending in approx 133 CE or point me to a good source for this information?  I was wondering what the punishment for taking the lord's name in vain was in Jesus's time and how does than mix with the narrative structure of John's gospel? If, for example, it was something serious, wouldn't the Jews punished him long before the Romans got to their hands on him or even heard about the guy?  What can you tell me about the role of Minos in the Inferno and in Christian extra-Biblical traditions? I was wondering if you could recommend any books that speak to the issue of the claim that the Catholic Church is God's Church from a free thought perspective?   I'm not sure how much Celibacy plays a role in the scandal, and I'm curious to know more about the Biblical perspective on celibacy. Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-12-05
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-033

Might Mark 6:24ff mean that Herodias used John's severed head as a magical oracle device? Could Moses and Joshua have been variant (Canaanite and Egyptian) versions of an older mythic deity, subsequently harmonized? To what scriptural evidence do Pre- and Postmillennialists appeal? Ricky Gervais says he is an "agnostic-atheist." What does that mean? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-11-18
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-032

Would you care to comment on the pre-Jesus environment, especially the book of Daniel and Enoch? Was Jesus on the cross actually petitioning Elijah to come and rescue him? Or appealing for the sun (Elijah?s fiery chariot) to rise? Might the ?young men? who seized him have been angels or archons trying to prevent the ascension of Jesus? The young man who fled away naed, leaving behind his garment: was this the Christ spirit escaping the flesh-body and leaving it behind? Or might the young man have been the resurrected Lazarus? Did the Ark of the Covenant even exist? What saith the Bible about animals? Can you recall any case of God overtly lying? The ?existence? of God. Recap of Mythicism. Was Hitchens correct that, had Jesus been sheer invention, early Christians would have created a simpler Nativity story? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-11-02
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-031

On whether mainstream acceptance of Mythicism would end Christianity. How is Arminianism any less deterministic than Calvinism?  If God knows how all future events would come to pass, then how can human beings act contrary to God's foreknowledge?  My wife is an evangelical believer and raises our kids in her faith. I don?t object, but after much internal debate, I?ve chosen to expose my kids to facts regarding other faiths in the world. My only real beef with the evangelical faith is the reliance on the threat of eternal damnation. How would you approach this? What passages in the Bible would you use to promote alternative eschatologies?  Is Jerusalem the 3rd-holiest site for Islam? And is Muhammad?s ascent to heaven apocryphal or Koranic? Does the Koran promise 72 virgins or 72 raisins?  If none of the four Gospels had survived but only Tatian's Gospel Harmony, would academics have been able to discover there were at least four Gospels and the Q document behind it? What methods can be used to find out if the Quran was originally several different sources?  Why were four Gospels included in the New Testament? Was each aimed at refuting a particular heresy? In the Bible, what is "usury," charging excessive Interest or the charging of any interest? What is a "familiar spirits"? Please comment on the nearly pornographic Ezekiel 23:20?  Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-09-13
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-030

Some Afghani Muslims believe Ali was a prophet after Muhammad. How can they reconcile this with Muhammad being ?the Seal of the Prophets?? Why wasn?t the Acts of John included in the canon? Would you have included it? Is there a consensus among modern Christian theologians regarding the need for salvation for extraterrestrial aliens? Is Heaven hotter than Hell? Was Adam an androgynous being much like Manu in the Rig Veda? Is it possible that Caiaphas blackmailed Pilate into crucifying Jesus, knowing that Pilate used funds from the Temple for building an aqueduct?  Barbara Thiering argues that Jesus was the "Man of a Lie" mentioned in the Dead Sea Scrolls. However, Robert Eisenman contends that it was St.Paul who is given this title. Which seems more likely? The story in Matthew about a Roman centurion who asks Jesus to heal his "young servant" uses the word pais, "boy" and that this has sexual connotations. Is this an effort to make Jesus appear to be friendly to Romans and vice versa?  The Mandeans are gnostics. They hold John the Baptist in high regard and Jesus in low regard. Might this indicate that John was actually gnostic, or with gnostic influence?  Was there a conflict between Jesus' followers and followers of John?  Might the Gospels have been scripts for screen plays? What do we know about the use of Greek words that are translated as the proper noun "Satan" in the New Testament? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-09-11
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-029

Morton Smith mentions the notion that Jesus had magical tattoos from his time in Egypt that empowered him to cast miraculous spells. Where does this idea come from? What is the point of Matthew?s device of pushing the nativity sequence forward by means of dreams? Do any modern Christians emphasize the significance of dreams? In Malachi, there is a stern warning about God smearing dung on the faces of the high priests of Israel. What's this all about? When roughly did Jews and Christians begin to see the Genesis One creation story as suggesting humans are created in the Image of God and that this should be seen as the origin of human dignity and all human rights?  Given your dislike for inclusive language in Bible translations, why did you translate "an individual" instead of "a man" in Galatians 6:1? Many OT passages involve cups of judgment, especially ones containing wormwood. Num 5: 18, 24, 27; Eze 23:31-34, Hab 2:15, Jer 8:14; 49:12; 51:6 +; Psa 60:2, 75:8; 116:13; Zec 12:2; Obd 1:6, and others. Might the Gethsemane scene be based on such texts?  Anew reading of the death of Absalom in 2 Samuel.
2018-09-03
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-028

Whether the original Hebrew of Genesis implies the loincloths of Adam and Eve were animal hides?or the physical bodies newly clothing their spiritual bodies. Might Genesis 6:4 have originated as propaganda for the policies of Ezra and Nehemiah?   Might the Greek phrase '?? ???????? ?? ??? ??????' mean the Genesis 6:1-4 Nephilim were avatars of the Gnostic Aeons?   Is the supposed influence of Hinduism & Buddhism on Gnosticism and Christianity rendered unlikely by the absence of any Sanskrit texts in Egypt or Palestine? My question relates to the overall idea the New Testament gospels are Midrash. Why would a group of individuals sit down one day, grab a random name out of a hat, then start writing Midrash in Greek? Why would Paul (in Galatians) refer only to James as the Lord's brother while not so describing Cephas? It seems obvious to me that "brother" here can have only its literal, primary meaning. I'm interested in your take on how the Prosperity Gospel has developed over the decades and its relation to those American Christians who have accumulated economic and political power. Does Romans 13 mean, as many hold, that God rubber stamps the actions of any and all government? Or that he has charged them with righteous administration, implying he will replace them if they fail? Is the Catholic refusal to inform the police of crimes learned of in the confession booth based on the Bible? What do you think of Jordan Pederson?s approach to the Bible? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-08-23
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-027

In Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity, Walter Bauer says: "the catastrophe in Palestine forever erased the demand that gentile Christians of the diaspora should be circumcised and should to some extent observe the ceremonial law. ... [F]ellowship between Jewish and gentile Christians in the outside world became really possible." Was it really so consequential and immediate an event as to erase that line? Is it racist for Walter Bauer to write that Rome was "by nature and custom least inclined or able to yield to seemingly fantastic oriental ways of thinking and oriental emotions that becloud clear thought"? In the Pauline epistles, many statements are tied together by words such as "If", "For", and "Thus".  It looks as if he's trying to construct logical arguments, but the statements are often non sequiturs.  Why do his writings have the trappings of rationality, but not the substance?  Do you think Jordan Peterson is on to something when he says that the Judeo-Christian tradition is exceptional among religions in preserving the wisdom Nature (or God) has written into us through evolution? Is the Swoon Theory compatible with Christ Mythicism? Does the Infancy Gospel of James portray Jesus as theophany of Yahweh descended direct from heaven?
2018-08-19
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-026

What about the apologetics argument that the resurrection of Jesus could not have been fabricated because of the fact that gospel writers claim that women were witnesses to the event. As women were not thought to be competent witnesses, why would the gospel author state that women saw the resurrected Jesus unless it were the truth? Is it true that the Roman empire generally had a policy of religious tolerance, provided that the religion in question makes a reasonable claim at being an ancient tradition? In Acts 17:16-34, Paul is dragged in front of the Areopagus, because some people thought he was a "babbler", while others said he was "a setter forth of strange gods." But the Areopagus lost the power to prosecute religious matters in 462 BC. Is this an anachronism? Wendy Doniger mentioned in one of her books the possibility that Jesus was raised by wild animals. What are your thoughts? Do you think it's possible that the rich young ruler was the "beloved disciple" in John's Gospel? What do you think of the family tomb of Jesus Christ? Does the Bible contain examples of utilitarian entreaty to sacred powers for no other reason but one?s own ends? I remember hearing of a theory of a hidden messiah where the messiah would come (and leave) without anyone knowing until being revealed some time later. Was this belief current before the Jesus era?
2018-08-10
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-025

When in Mark 5:43 Jesus tells Jairus and his wife not to tell anyone about ?this,? something impossible given that they would have to pretend henceforth that she was dead in an empty grave, Mark mean s that Jesus means not to disclose the method of healing/resurrecting the girl, not to the fact that she was alive. Maybe he wanted everyone to think he was simply an effective doctor, not a miracle worker? This set of questions was inspired by a YouTube video, "If Atheists Talked About The Hulk Like Jordan Peterson Talks About The Bible." Does the Bible ever rename characters for discernible literary of theological reasons? Preacher often say the body and the flesh are not the same thing, but is there an actual Greek basis for this distinction? Is the Hulk a decent representation of the Paulinist or Marcionist "Fleshly Man"? What reason is there to posit the existence of a Signs Source underlying John? I regularly hear that many modern critical scholars are both Christians and hold certain mainstream positions regarding the suspect history of books such as the Pastorals, at least one of the Epistles of Peter, etc. Do you know whether, as Christians, they tend to accept the books as pious forgeries and still somehow inspired as scripture? If you were a somewhat conservative Christian what one book of the Bible would you consider the most problematic to your belief, the most embarrassing, the most open to attack from the outside? And why? When you write a scholarly book or paper, do you typically just write out the entirety of your argument, and add in the relevant references later? Or do you stop and start, inserting references as you go? Or some mixture of the two? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-07-18
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-024

It has been claimed that the genealogy in Matthew 1 contains 14+ features of sevens, said to collectively defy probability.  From a textual standpoint, how plausible is this?  Could the Samaritan woman in John 4 be a reference to the last Seleucid monarch, Cleopatra Selene, who just so happens to have been the ruler of Galilee during 70s BCE when the Toledot dates Jesus? What are the covenants? How were they broken? What did they add or take away from the human race?  My father told me as a child that faith and prayer power is limited because God cannot lie, and his words create laws, laws that even God himself cannot break. Is there any passage of the Bible where God breaks his law? Did God create animals in Eden so man might offer them in sacrifice?   The Synoptics depict John the Baptist predicting the imminent apocalyptic judgment to be rendered by the Coming One (Jesus). It didnâ??t happen. How do inerrantists deal with this? Or do they even notice? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-07-10
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-023

Pastors seem often to give parishioners answers that will satisfy them even if the pastor doesnâ??t really have an opinion. He doesnâ??t want to look bad. How did you deal with this situation? In the depictions of the crucifixion in Mark and Matthew, why are Jesus' cries to Eloi and Eli misheard by onlookers? What purpose does this detail serve in the narrative? What do you make of the Freemasonsâ?? allegorical interpretations of the Bible? How large were the stones covering ancient sepulcher tombs? You know how you can separate the Pentateuch into four sourIs there a book that delineates the various â??hereticalâ?? elements or sources on the gospels? Could you speak to what lead to your atheistic stance? Is speaking of the Holy, the ineffable, et cetera. merely speaking in the abstract of the mystery of existence or the idea there may be something out there, but perhaps it is just beyond human understanding? What seems to be the most prevalent idea of the fate of the unfortunate after death according to the Bible? How could something like Christianity get off the ground, especially if Jesus was a myth?
2018-07-02
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-022

Nature is horrible, and civilization allows animals such as a cows, pigs, sheep, and humans to live in comfort and safety.  Why, then, the persistent mytheme of humans being the defective additions to an otherwise perfect world? Jesus never baptized anyone with water so how did this become a staple of the Christian church, especially the Baptists? What do you make of the fact that there is zero evidence that the Arab conquerors of the 7th century were Muslims? I personally am convinced that they were most likely a Syriac Christian sect, a sect that had a lot in common with the Ebionites.  Do you have any suggestions on books that you could recommend on Martin Luther or the Lutherans in general? Is it fair to say that "Christianity defined itself in the context of Neo Platonism neo-platonic philosophy as a religion of truth"? Might Jesusâ?? cursing the fig tree reflect the folk custom f cursing/rebuking a barren tree in order to produce fruit the following season? Can you shed some light on the dating of the book of Daniel and what we can determine whether these are predictions of the future or reflections on the past? Is there any textual evidence anywhere that Matthew's birth narrative with the Oriental Kings paying respect to infant Jesus a subtle attempt at recognizing the Alexandrian Buddhist influence on new Christianity?   Could Christianity survive in some form if it were proved there was no historical Jesus? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-06-17
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-021

Doesnâ??t the mention in Galatians of Paulâ??s meeting with â??James the Lordâ??s brotherâ?? count against mythicism? Was Thomas Didymus in some sense Jesusâ?? twin? Does the NT refer anywhere to a shape-shifting Jesus? I'm wondering if you have any thoughts on how to discredit Papal Infallibility.  How much of the poem Father Brennan recites to Robert Thorn in THE OMEN is based on Revelation or any of the apocrypha or any other biblical prophecy? What do you think of Islam and the Koran? I would like your take on the parallels that exist between Paul and Stoicism - both intentional and accidental. How much actual influence existed there, and precisely what of Paul's writings best exemplify this? Is Theophilus (lover of God) just the Christian reader of the Gospel of Luke? Why does only Mark mention Pilate's astonishment at Jesus' quick death? Is there any scriptural warrant for the Doctrine of Inclusion, whereby there is no Hell and all are saved, whether they believe or not, whether they do good works or not. Indeed: whether they are Christians and accept the divinity of Jesus or not? Adventures in tongue-speaking. Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-06-07
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The Bible Geek Podcast 18-020

Do you think Isreal and Judah were ever a single nation? Any biblical recollections of two major asteroid impacts of 12000 and 13000 years ago? What are your thoughts on humor in the Bible and humor as a factor in a life well lived? Are the moral concepts in the Bible unique and proof of divine inspiration? What is the relationship between esoteric Buddhism and esoteric Judaism? Theme music provided by: Peter Benjamin - composer for media www.peterbenjaminmusic.org [email protected]
2018-06-05
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