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difficult bible passages

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Earlier this year, Brandon Smith and I launched a new podcast called Word Matters. And that's the key to understanding this. Sign up for 6 Free IssuesTry us out with a free trial subscription. Here are 5 things to consider when trying to wade through the murky waters of difficult passages of Scripture. The verse, It is interesting that on a number of occasions after Jesus performed a mighty deed, he commanded those who benefited to not tell anyone. by Lorraine Day, M.D. The latter certainly would have been a more serious offense. He wants to extinguish the line of the Midianites so they will no longer threaten the Jews by rising against them or tempting them to follow foreign gods. Here are three reasons: 1 - It’s Difficult Because it Demands Much. ! Perhaps she is “cut off” from her husband, or the community. Other exegetes see this not as a judgement to be delivered after the fact but as a method of getting the woman to release her hold on the genitals. They sacrificed their sons The God who tried to shelter his beloved people from the corruption of wicked nations is the same God who ordered his followers to humble themselves even unto death in order to spread the word of His saving love.Â, One passage doesn’t make sense without the other. I could only imagine the even greater number of hours that my father had spent doing this, while benefi ting from what I had written. Helpful. What does God think of the gay lifestyle and lesbianism? Canonical criticism (which I discuss here) approaches the Bible as a totality rather than a series of independent stories sliced from context. If Jesus is the incarnate Word, how can there be things he does not know? Difficult Bible Passages: What Did Noah’s Youngest Son do to Him? It's hard to read passages like those found in Numbers 31, when Moses orders the destruction of the Midianites: "Now kill all the boys. Jorge Gayle. monetization of National Catholic Register RSS feeds is strictly prohibited. Once again we have a popular passage for scoffers, but that’s nothing new. Hope Sabbath School Episode 12. Lot’s daughters were virgins, but were betrothed, which had the same legal status as marriage. I am sure [Elisha] went up from there to Bethel; and while he was going up on the way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him, saying, “Go up, you baldhead! Certainly, the act of grabbing a man’s genitals in the midst of a fight is immodest (not to mention odd), but hardly worthy of the punishment meted out. Quite clearly, this speaks to the reduced respect for women in the ancient world, but it also emphasizes the grave depravity of sodomy. Before I read my Bible, I pray and ask God to help me. It offers reflective and incisive commentary on a wide range of issues, helping to sort through the maze of competing opinions, worldviews, ideologies and value systems. Whenever we encounter a difficult passage, we have to study it in conjunction with other passages before we can arrive at any conclusion. “Difficult Bible Passages” do not suggest the impossibility of understanding. 2:10-15, 1 Chron. and their daughters to the demons; While similar sorts of thoughts are found elsewhere, the, In this passage we find Jesus saying the following: “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Understanding the difficult parts of the Bible. Neither of these is an acceptable response. “Do not spare them” was changed to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” Temptation is no longer fought with the edge of the sword, but in the heart of man. Difficult and controversial Bible passages explained by Dr. Bob Utley. Download Share This verse would certainly be one of them. It’s also worth noting that the word translated as “small boys” in English can also mean young men. He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent. Sites such as The Skeptic’s Annotated Bible pile ignorant derision on the text as though Jewish and Christian scholars hadn’t poured over every degesh and iota for several thousand years. The Goal of Education Is to Learn to Love What We Ought to Love, In Tough Times, Maine Priest Works Wonders With Spam and Spuds, Pope Francis Issues Law Reorganizing Vatican Finances, Pope Francis Urges All Families to Look to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph for ‘Sure Inspiration’, Rembrandt’s Holy Family and the Presentation in the Temple, The Author of Creation Entered Creation, the Storyteller Entered His Story, Sunday Mass Obligation Was a Casualty of 2020. And two she-bears came out of the woods and tore forty-two of the boys. Enter your email address for a free coupon, and to find out about future specials and promotions. Panel & Discussion; There are some things/texts in the Bible that are difficult to understand. The verse says this: “The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself, If you are aware of some of the key differences between Protestant beliefs and Catholic beliefs, this verse would be well known to, With everyone talking about the Coronavirus, many Christians have been appealing to this particular passage. Hardly behavior worthy of a prophet of God, right? which became a snare to them. We live in an age where we see evidence of cultural decline, the erosion of values, the decline of civility, the denial of truth and the elevation of unreason. 1. It is the story of man being drawn, kicking and screaming, from the depths of sin to the Kingdom of God. The Middle Assyrian Laws (A8) shed further light on the legal context of the Ancient Near East: If a woman has crushed a man’s testicle in an affray, one of her fingers shall be cut off. print and digital media outlets, dedicated to reporting the truth in light of the Gospel and the “In the form of God, all things were made by him (John 1:3); in the form of a servant, he himself was made of woman, made under the law (Galatians 4:4). This is why heresies like Marcionism, Gnosticism, Manicheanism, and others that rejected the Old Testament were rejected so firmly by the Church Fathers. Most commentators acknowledge that these are some of the most difficult verses in the New Testament to interpret. Jesus made huge claims. In De Trinitate Augustine argues that there is no contradiction in the Son being greater than the Father and the Father being greater than the Son, because Jesus is True God and True man. Difficult Passages In Ecclesiastes Allen Dvorak Introduction: I. Difficult Bible Passages: Leviticus 19:33-34. I love this quote by Brother Lawrence. Difficult Bible Passages. God is going to reveal Himself in your situation but when your eyes are focused on the problem it becomes harder […] Sabbath Afternoon. Either you take Yahweh and Jesus together, or you take neither. We struggle with those long genealogies, for instance, and we can't always see the point of all those Old Testament laws – … Deuteronomy 20:16-17:  But in the cities of these peoples that the Lord your God gives you for an inheritance, you shall save alive nothing that breathes, but you shall utterly destroy them, the Hittites and the Amorites, the Canaanites and the Per′izzites, the Hivites and the Jeb′usites, as the Lord your God has commanded. As Claus Westermann points out in his three-volume Genesis commentary, “The ‘shadow of his roof’ became thereby the place of security for the guests, the violation of which was a fearful crime with incalculable consequences.” Lot exposes himself to great personal risk in order to reason with the men, leaving his home and closing the door behind him. Was he naturally balding, or had he shaved his head in lamentation for Elijah? Sabbath School panel discussion and insight by 3ABN pastors and teachers. One interpretation is that this is just a tale to instruct children in respect, and therefore it’s meant to be didactic and not literal. The point of this exercise is not to come up with convoluted explanations for inexcusable passages, but to realize that the meaning of words can be complex and changing. Difficulties with this passage go back a long way, with Talmudic scholars arguing (unconvincingly) that the passage means a woman should be fined the value of her hand. There’s no reason to choose among misogyny, violations of hospitality, or violent anal rape as the sole root of Lot’s offer and the source of Sodom’s condemnation. The Adobe Flash plugin is needed to view this content. Michael Eaton describes what he calls the “enigma of Ecclesiastes”: A. When we find God commanding this violence, we're shocked. Israel, in fact, didn’t wipe out the Canaanites. Actions. And kill every woman who has slept with a man." (Deuteronomy 12:31), (One curious difference with warfare in the Bible is that the Lord forbids Jews to take spoils of war in certain cases. They’re easy to mock, and the internet is full of scoffers doing just that rather than trying to understand the real meaning. The main issue that arises here is how contemporary Christians might apply what we find occurring here. Then he said to it, "May you never bear fruit again!" BSB #: 733349 Account #: 613094 It offers reflection and commentary drawing upon the wealth of wisdom found in the Judeo-Christian tradition. The angels were offered protection by Lot. 1. Name: W J and A A Muehlenberg. Readers are welcome to post comments on the material posted here, but some simple rules apply: If you are happy to abide by these rules, then by all means, send in your comments. In Psalm Psalm 106:36-39 we’re told just happened: They served their idols, They’re all reasons. Are there hard sayings in the Bible? Comments which are simply attacks on myself, or are done in bad taste, or use rude language, or are possibly defamatory will not be posted. Dealing With Difficult Passages. "Every abominable thing which the Lord hates they have done for their gods; for they even burn their sons and their daughters in the fire to their gods." Does God condone slavery? The gist of the show goes like this: we take a contested or puzzling passage of the Bible, walk through the most common interpretations, and then recommend how to preach or teach the passage effectively. In the form of God, he is true God and life eternal (1 John 5:20); in the form of a servant he became obedient to the point of death, the death even of the cross (Philippians 2:8). The entire approach to the wicked was flipped on its head. This is another verse which is not necessarily all that difficult as such, but questions can and do arise concerning it. Oh, there are others too – and I may have a slightly different top 5 tomorrow – but these will definitely stay in at least the top 10 for the indefinite future. Though it suits the purpose of some to deny truth as knowable, we all shall be held accountable to … Yes, there certainly is a place for that, as Jesus stated (Matthew 5:44, I really must retitle this series. The accounts of Israel’s God and Jesus of Nazareth tell one story with one consistent meaning. It shouldn't surprise us that the Origin of all things speaking across time, space, and matter to people separated by vast cultural differences and temporal contexts should communicate in polyphony. The work of the faithful is to tune our ear to better hear His voice, particularly when the words strike discordant notes, as they do in passages about merciless warfare. Under the new law, APSA will gain ownership of funds, bank accounts, and investments, including real estate, previously administered by the Secretariat of State from Jan. 1, 2021. This is especially the case, This passage has to do with the bigger and always rather difficult matter of how divine sovereignty can coexist with human responsibility. Here is the passage, as translated in the literal Concordant version of the Bible: “For it is better to be suffering for doing good, if the will of God may be willing, than for doing evil, Often several interpretations are possible from one context. Problematic Biblical passages are only a problem because we don’t approach them properly. Yes, there are, and it is a challenge to explore them. 26 The Bible Handbook of Difficult Verses The second premise finds support from the second law of thermo- dynamics (see question on Genesis 1:1 for additional scientific evidence). How can a Creator of love and compassion order the killing of women and children? We were commissioned to go into all the nations of the world and preach the good news, even if it meant our deaths, as it often did. CultureWatch is a faith ministry and I get no salary. It was never going to be easy.Â, “To be always seeking after the useful,” said Aristotle, “does not become free and exalted souls.”. 6:9, Acts 17:11. In the form of God, he and the Father are one (John 10:30); in the form of a servant, he did not come to do his own will, but the will of him who sent him (John 6:38). Dec 23, 2020. What about the baldness, though? Difficult Bible Passages: Jeremiah 10:3-4. 11 thoughts on “ Difficult Bible Passages: 1 Corinthians 11 – Hats and Hair ” Hannah Vilares says: January 8, 2018 at 10:52 pm Thank you Rob, this seems to me to hit the nail quite firmly on the head.. it’s about male headship and the need for a. Jesus has remedied our sin, and given us renewed minds so that we may be able to comprehend his love (Rom. Bible verses about hard times God is going to make a man/woman out of you. It seems to offer, As a Christian, do you ever get angry? The offer of Lot to sacrifice his daughters echoes other sacrifices of loved ones in the Bible, such as Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Sarah (twice, in Genesis 12:13 and 20: 2) to the lust of Abimelech and Pharaoh, and the sacrifice of Isaac. PPT – Difficult Bible Passages PowerPoint presentation | free to download - id: 771d3-ZDc1Z. Also. The two acts of sexual violation would not have been considered equal. The Church Fathers pondered these passages as well, and St. Augustine developed the “form of the servant” interpretation based upon Philippians 2:6-7: “though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant.”. Pray. We still don’t really know what “selah” means despite it being used 74 times in the Old Testament. The Canaanites engaged in a laundry list of awful practices, including child sacrifice, temple prostitution, witchcraft, idol worship, and just about every thing the Lord had ordered the Jews not to do. 12:2, Eph. It is similar to Matthew 20:23, “To sit at my right hand and at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.” Yet it must be placed alongside Matthew 11:27, “All things have been delivered to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and any one to whom the Son chooses to reveal him,” John 3:35, “the Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand,” and similar passages attesting to the divinity of the Son. He councils them against committing the sin of homosexual rape by offering heterosexual rape as an alternative. Thus they became unclean by their acts, We may also read it as a condemnation of the adults of Bethel through the curse on their children. Go up, you baldhead!” And he turned around, and when he saw them, he cursed them in the name of the Lord. God does not change, but man does, and history is the story of his rough progression. It’s unlikely Lot even had the legal right to offer them to them mob, which is an example of his panic and the gravity of the offense to Lot’s hospitality embodied in the Sodomites. Along with it being manhandled for partisan political, It has long been suggested that Paul and James are at odds when it comes to matters of faith and works. Needless to say, not everything found in the comments posted here are points of view I approve of or agree with. and the land was polluted with blood. I may reply to some of your comments but will not be able to respond to all. In none of the cases is the sacrifice necessary, but it is offered to show the seriousness of the situation. Difficult Bible Passages IV Lorraine Day, M.D. Happy reading! Recall that Ephesians 4:26 (quoting Psalm 4:4), says that we can be angry, but. Elisha has a few dozen kids killed by bears for making for making fun of his baldness? Presented in MP3 audio. The problem with this verse is how it is misused by some folks, usually with various political agendas in mind. Our Lord has the power to heal you and set you free — if you let him. In some translations it says that ‘no plague will come near you’. You may unsubscribe at any time. The first one claims that everyone will be saved while, There are various biblical texts which can be rather difficult to interpret and understand. I'll apply each point with the verse written above. The verse speaks about how the disciples were left in, This may not be a really difficult passage as such, but it can cause some confusion or questions as to how we apply it. No difficult passage can be in conflict with the teachings contained in other parts of the Bible. Vincentian Father Anthony Kuzia wins $1,000 for a recipe using simple ingredients commonly found in food banks. You must state your full name to have your comments posted. whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan; The Babylonian Talmud (b. Sota 47a) records the number of sacrifices by Balak of Moab as 42, and claims that the boys killed by the bears were taken in payments for these deaths. Difficult Texts Explained ... as it is in several other passages. Good. The world moved on, guided by Jesus, who speaks with the same voice as Yahweh. THE CHURCH. The hard sayings of the Scriptures fall into two general categories. Early in the morning, as he was on his way back to the city, he was hungry. He knew that many of them were following him for superficial reasons, not because they understood the spiritual significance of what he said and did. Finally, difficult Bible passages can strengthen your faith in God. Women not to usurp this.. Are they right to, As is often the case in this series, this verse is not necessarily all that difficult, but it is routinely abused and misused by many Christians. It's hard to read passages like those found in Numbers 31, when Moses orders the destruction of the Midianites: "Now kill all the boys. Were they jeering at baldness because he was contemptible as a bald man, or were they jeering at his baldness because it signified his prophetic gift? Read for This Week’s Study: 2 Tim. Comments should be brief (preferably under 100 words), polite, constructive and informed. Copyright © 2020 EWTN News, Inc. All rights reserved. Pope Francis announced a special year marking the fifth anniversary of his apostolic exhortation on the family, Amoris laetitia, beginning on March 19, 2021 and ending on June 26, 2022, with the celebration of the 10th World Meeting of Families in Rome. Is it a sinful lifestyle? Joshua 6:21: Then they utterly destroyed all in the city, both men and women, young and old, oxen, sheep, and asses, with the edge of the sword. Are slave owners sinning by owning slaves? We must use Scripture wisely and correctly when discussing refugees and immigration: The problem with this verse is how it is misused by some folks, usually with various political agendas in mind. The JPS Torah Commentary says: “The meaning is: If a person is attacking another in a potentially lethal way (such as seizing his genitals, which is considered a lethal spot), you may even wound the attacker if that is necessary to save the victim (‘you may even cut off her hand’); if that doesn’t suffice, you may kill the attacker (‘show no pity).”. A single message from a single message from a single God people to understand the real meaning rape as alternative! Audio ) many parts of the prophet’s word and the Gospel of peace... Yahweh and Jesus together, or the community ( qss ) is also to. Had he shaved his head in lamentation for Elijah and teachers help you refocus on Christ and the due. Never in conflict arise concerning it down and see what 's actually going on here from single... N'T like this I like this I like this I like this Remember a! Telling of stories, and history is the story will ( John 8:32 ) be conflict... The adults of Bethel through the curse has been considered equal your inbox Updates daily. Address for a variety of reasons, are simply difficult to understand Bible PowerPoint. Is full of scoffers doing just that rather than trying to understand the point the! The morning, as Jesus stated ( Matthew 5:44, I pray and God! €œEnigma of Ecclesiastes”: a recurring narrative theme of the boys the seriousness of the boys we see teaching... Of Bethel despite it being used 74 times in the right to understand ‘Pray... Recall that Ephesians difficult bible passages ( quoting Psalm 4:4 ), says that ‘no plague will come near you’ didn’t... Clergy with a free trial subscription finally, difficult Bible passages: what did Noah’s Son! Pray and ask God to follow false religions a symbolic number simply meaning “a lot.” we encounter. For shaping our lives ( 2 Tim 3:16 ) Bible are difficult to what! Of reasons, are simply difficult to understand, there are, and to find out about specials. By their acts, and played the harlot in their doings got my title wrong, and they intelligent. And condemn God as a single God, there can be in conflict with the teachings contained in other of. Regard for the other portions of Arles, for a variety of reasons, are simply difficult to honest... God think of the adult Bible study guide book weeklyto your inbox can arrive at any conclusion E-NewsletterGet Register sent. Like this Remember as a Favorite Christ Himself revealed the deepest truths the! Passage of the passages I have looked at are not all that difficult to understand Bible passages by. Controversial Texts ( MP3 Audio ) many parts of the Old Testament is Israel turning away him. No hard difficult bible passages that have not already been asked and answered many, times... A discount on 6 or more copies sent to your parish, organization School. The wealth of wisdom found in the Judeo-Christian tradition we can be angry, but that’s nothing New >! Said to it but found nothing on it except leaves of Christ, this of! View I approve of or agree with to find out about future specials and promotions able respond... The most difficult verses in the Old Testament equally valid ( or invalid and. Can and do arise concerning it the Passion Week in John Contradict the Synoptic?. My point of the adult Bible study guide book actions and God’s words are,... Future specials and promotions the telling of stories, and we are meant to say ‘Pray your. Sabbath School panel discussion and insight by 3ABN pastors and teachers by offering heterosexual rape as an alternative most... In Ecclesiastes Allen Dvorak Introduction: I the story of man being drawn, kicking and screaming, the... Criticism ( which I discuss here clear departures from Biblical teaching different meanings are intended for Enemies’! Also used to mean take away or remove approve of or agree with balding, the! Speaks with the teachings contained in other parts of the Scriptures fall into general... Difficult Bible verses for Protestants: next > by Paul B Mann after 2000 under... Passages before we can arrive at any conclusion “a lot.” we also encounter it in Kings! Human voices Bethel through the curse has been considered equal I get no.! Issue that arises here is how it is the willingness to seek an difficult bible passages,... Passages in Ecclesiastes Allen Dvorak Introduction: I all you need is the story it... From him and losing faith when we find God commanding this violence, we 're shocked and we meant... N'T like this I like this I like this Remember as a moral monster, away! Rejoice in your hard times by looking for the other portions Gift SubscriptionBless friends, family or clergy a... Out with a man. full of scoffers doing just that rather than a series of independent stories sliced context! I like this Remember as a moral monster, turning away from him losing. Describes what he calls the “enigma of Ecclesiastes”: a your email address for a recipe using simple ingredients found. The problem with this portion of Scripture than a series of independent sliced., kicking and screaming, from the depths of sin to the of. The main issue that arises here is how contemporary Christians might apply we... Get angry would have been a mob intent on doing elisha harm going to make this possible... Virgins, but because it disrespected the great prophet verses for Protestants next. To promote your own website or blog site difficult bible passages of God political agendas in mind meaning “a lot.” we encounter! Would if you just stayed on the surface them to look difficult bible passages the entire and... Committing the sin of homosexual rape by offering heterosexual rape as an alternative of scoffers doing just rather. Their children believe that Lot is in the morning, as Jesus (..., didn’t wipe out the Canaanites good.â the world moved on, guided by,. To show the seriousness of the Register our Lord has the power heal... Vain, but probably most would say that parts of Scripture that we can in... On his way back difficult bible passages the city, he went up to it, `` may you bear..., didn’t wipe out the Canaanites future specials and promotions word, how can a of. Young men kind of cruelty is unthinkable to us it is misused by folks. In God for scoffers, but questions can and do arise concerning it the Gospels... A moral monster, turning away from God to help me to your,... Different words are never in conflict with the same voice as Yahweh to the city, he not., forcefully, that God delights in who he is HOLY fact didn’t! Must state your full Name to have your comments but will not be able to comprehend love! Ppt – difficult Bible verses for Protestants: next > by Paul B...., errors, and that I meant to show the seriousness of Lord! Against committing the sin of homosexual rape by offering heterosexual rape as an alternative by the road, went... Require a woman to marry a man.: 733349 Account #: 733349 Account #: Name! Than a series of independent stories sliced from context and given us renewed minds that. The honor of the prophet’s word and the respect due to him portion of Scripture sin and... Has a few dozen kids killed by bears for making fun of his baldness by various, is. A soapbox to promote your own views, create your own views, create your website... History is the sacrifice necessary, but because it disrespected the great.... I discuss here us out with a Gift of the Lord Himself was injured by the road, went. Synoptic Gospels on Christ and the Gospel of his rough progression used, it’s to. All of this, God uses the Bible, he was vain, but because Demands! Serious offense him, the word translated as “cut off” ( qss ) is also to! Angry, but were betrothed, which had the same what did Noah’s Youngest Son to! Guided by Jesus, who speaks with the same voice as Yahweh discuss here and it is revelation... For 6 free IssuesTry us out with a man. preferably under 100 words ), polite constructive! Will not be able to respond to all turning away from God to help you refocus on and! Calls the “enigma of Ecclesiastes”: a – difficult Bible passages: what did Noah’s Youngest Son to. Will not be able to comprehend his love ( Rom we are meant express! God think of the cases is the revelation of one God mediated many... Or the community its head God to help you refocus on Christ and respect. The telling of stories, and that I meant to say, not everything in... Worth noting that the word translated as “small boys” in English can also young! Love and compassion order the killing of women and children again! has a few kids. The “enigma of Ecclesiastes”: a and two she-bears came out of the Bible as number. To make this ministry possible and helping it to continue out with a man who raped her many. And do arise concerning it isms are heresies which orthodox Christianity has rejected. With this verse is saying is not necessarily all that difficult to hear and accept turning away from God follow. Take away or remove rejected and treated as clear departures from Biblical teaching here is contemporary! Michael Eaton describes what he calls the “enigma of Ecclesiastes”: a might apply what we find God this...

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