Bible Meme

Ryan tagged me with a Bible meme so here goes:

1. What translation of the Bible do you like best?

King James Version.  It just sounds so nice.

2. Old or New Testament?

New Testament but I have an affinity for the Torah and Isaiah.

3. Favorite Book of the Bible?

I have to break this up into sections:

  • Torah — Genesis
  • Prophets — Isaiah
  • Writings — Proverbs
  • Gospels — Mark
  • Pauline Epistles — Philippians
  • Catholic Epistles — 1John
  • Apocalyptic — Revelation

4. Favorite Chapter?

Philippians 2

5. Favorite Verse? (feel free to explain yourself if you have to)

I can’t pick a single verse, but John’s prologue (1:1-18) is my favorite passage.

6. Bible character you think you’re most like?

Elijah the Tishbite.  It’s the sarcasm for sure.

7. One thing from the Bible that confuses you?

“And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.”  (Matt. 11:12)  I’ve heard this verse preached on and exegeted countless times and it has never made sense.

8. Moses or Paul?

Tough one.  Right now I’ll say Paul.

9. A teaching from the Bible that you struggle with or don’t get?

I’d say original sin but then again I’m not entirely sure it’s really a teaching from the Bible.  I tentatively hold to it now because of Romans 5 but I understand there are translational issues.  I reserve the right to suspend judgment on this for the time being.

10. Coolest name in the Bible?

Ishbibenob (יִשְׁבִּי בְּנֹב)

Now tag five people.

I tag: Peter Kirk, Mike Aubrey, Doug Chaplin, Eric Sowell, Shaun Tabatt, (and Esteban Vázquez if he feels like actually complying with one of these tags).



14 thoughts on “Bible Meme

  1. Oh (wo)man, I owe you SO MANY of these! Better get to work–on that, and on the reviews! ;-)

    (My review of Kregel’s Three Views on the Origins of the Synoptic Gospels is ALMOST ready, btw.)

  2. Hi Nick,
    I’ve been spending a lot of time in John 1:1-18, and just wondered if you knew if the Greek does anything to indicate that the “word” should be capitalized in this section, or is it just tradition?
    — Vance

  3. Vance: Technically all capitalization is tradition since the Greek didn’t have it, but I think that there’s at least three things to indicate that translators are justified in capitalizing ‘Word’:

    1. The Word is eternal (John 1:1a).
    2. The Word is personal (John 1:1b).
    3. The Word is divine (John 1:1c).

    In John 1:1a the imperfect tense of the verb (εἰμί) “to be” is used and translated as “was” (ἦν) signifying a continuous action in the past. So ‘in the beginning’ the Word had already existed. He didn’t come to exist in the beginning but existed before it.

    In John 1:1b the word is said to have been “with” (πρὸς) God. Again the imperfect (ἦν) is used showing that this togetherness was before the beginning, but what interests us here is the preposition “with.” Louw & Nida say that πρὸς is “a marker of association, often with the implication of interrelationships” (Greek-English Lexicon, 792). So the Word is not a mere thought, plan, logic, or concept as some people teach, the Word is personal having been in communion with God for all eternity.

    In John 1:1c we are told that the Word was God again seeing the imperfect (ἦν) which tells us that the Word was always God. Daniel B. Wallace said:

    The English versions typically have, “and the Word was God.” But in Greek, the word order has been reversed. It reads,

    καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος
    and God was the Word.

    We know that “the Word” is the subject because it has the definite article, and we translate it accordingly: “and the Word was God.” Two questions, both of theological import, should come to mind: (1) why was θεὸς thrown forward? and (2) why does it lack the article? In brief, its emphatic position stresses its essence or quality: “What God was, the Word was” is how one translation brings out this force. Its lack of the definite article keeps us from identifying the person of the Word (Jesus Christ) with the person of the “God” (the Father). That is to say, the word order tells us that Jesus Christ has all the divine attributes that the Father has; lack of the article tells us that Jesus is not the Father. (in William Mounce’s Basics of Biblical Greek, 27-28.)

    Hope that helps.

  4. Hi Nick,
    A question for you related to the Trinity. I find the examples of God regretting, changing His mind, etc. in the Old Testament problematic. How can an omniscient, omnipresent God change His mind? One explanation is that God choose to create the universe through the Son, and essential to that creative event was that the Son is linked to time–unlike the Father. Or perhaps in addition to being the Word, the light, the rock, the lamb, the Redeemer, Christ, I AM, etc., the Son IS time.
    Anyway, if this is the case then verses like Gen 25:23 (Esau & Jacob) could relate to the Omniscient Father and verses like 1 Samuel 15:10-11 (Regretting making Saul king) could relate to the Son. Any thoughts?

    — Vance

  5. Vance: I generally accept the explanation of God showing regret, remorse, etc. as examples of anthropopathism (attributing human emotions to God). We can only view things from our perspective and this was true of the Biblical writers as well so what looked one way to them might not have been the way that it actually was. I think the way that Calvinists explain it is that everything that happened, happens, and will happen was all decreed in eternity, so there is no actual regret.

    I don’t know about Jesus as time though. That’s something I’ll have to look into. I’m currently reading a book of essays called Trinity, Time, and Church: A Response to the Theology of Robert W. Jenson so I’ll let you know if I come across anything in there about it.

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