Grace & Knowledge Blog

Grace & Knowledge Blog

The Inspiring Story of the Korahites

March 20, 2021

Moses' cousin Korah is infamous for rebelling against Moses and Aaron along with Dathan, Abiram, and a group of 250 Levites.  God dealt with the rebellion decisively.  The Levites were incinerated, while the group swallowed up Dathan and Abiram.  A midrash says that both happened to Korah, and he was in flames when he fell into the pit.  

However, Korah's sons were spared, and his descendants went on to serve God as musicians at the tabernacle and temple.  The psalms written by the Korahites reflect their family history, as I explain in an article posted recently in Issue 35.

Tags: grace and knowledge articles

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The Lion of Judah

February 19, 2021

Christian Old Testament scholar John Sailhamer has noted that in the Pentateuch, a lengthy narrative will be followed by a poetic passage that gives some presentation of the Gospel.  The poetic passage will be followed by a brief narrative epilogue.

The poetic passages are Gen 49, Exod 15, Num 23-24, and Deut 32-33.  The messianic implications of these passages are laid out in depth in a book by a student of Sailhamer, Kevin S. Chen.  I have posted an article today summarizing Chen's treatment of Gen 49 in this book, The Messianic Vision of the Pentateuch

Tags: grace and knowledge articles

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Learning from Reuben's Experience

January 21, 2021

In Genesis 37-50, Judah and Joseph emerge as leaders among the sons of Jacob.  Reuben, the oldest son, plays a minor role and seems to be portrayed as somone who is well-intenioned but ultmately ineffective.  Since we have all experienced failure in our lives, we can identify with Reuben.  I have posted an article on Reuben at the Grace & Knowledge website. 

Tags: grace and knowledge articles

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True and False Prophets

December 23, 2020

True prophets can be hard to listen to but tell us things that we need to hear.  Take for example the words of two biblical prophets that compare certain groups of people unfavorably to Sodom.

On the other hand, false prophets often tell people what they would like to hear.  There seem to be plenty of these prophets around today.

Tags: current events, grace and knowledge articles

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Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia: A Beastly Long Word

July 31, 2020

Here is today's vocabulary word:  hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia, which means fear of the number 666.  

Tags: words

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"Exiting" Bible Stories

July 19, 2020

I noticed that a local church is advertising a youth activity for tonight that features "exiting Bible stories." 

The announcement reminded me of the most famous of the "exiting" stories, the Exodus.  Of course, the Bible is full of Exodus stories---Abraham and Sarah being expelled from Egypt, Lot escaping Sodom, Jacob and his family leaving Laban.... The Exodus is a pretty big theme in the Bible.  So the storytellers will have a lot of exiting material to choose from.

Tags: grace and knowledge articles, humor

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House Signs of Oxford 48: Loud Sign on a Quiet Street

June 14, 2020

On a quiet afternoon in Oxford, I went roman around town.  While walking one can notice a lot more details than are visible from an arial view.  On South College Avenue I noticed a sign I hadn't seen before.  It read:  Raising Helvetica

Oxford is almost deserted right now, so very little "Helvetica" is being raised.  But the sign gave a reminder that the students will return eventually and Oxford will come back to life as a font of knowledge.


Tags: humor, oxford oh signs

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An Additional Blog

May 17, 2020

During the CoVID lockdown, I have launched an additional blog.   It keeps track of the weekly teachings at Church of the Messiah, where we have been experimenting with a lectionary that goes through the Pentateuch, with related readings from the prophets, psalms, and New Testament, twice every seven years.    

Tags: church of the messiah

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March 2020 Oxford Library Sale

March 6, 2020

Today we stopped by the public library for a book sale.  There was not as much available this time as at there was at the bigger sale at the end of the summer.  I picked up three hardbacks and a paperback for $3.50. including 

Tags: books, oxford library sale

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Another Christian Time Travel Novel

January 22, 2020

Back in Dec 2013, I posted some comments on a subgenre that might be called "Christian time travel fiction".  At that point I had read 3 books in which someone travels back in time to first-century Palestine.  

Recently I read a fourth one, The Resurrection Wager by Christopher Coates.  In this short novel, a research institute in Boston develops time travel technology and decides to test it out by sending a team back to document the events surrounding the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.  In the process, they find out firsthand the potential of time travel to alter history.  

I enjoyed the book, although the writing was pretty clumsy.  (I gave it 3 stars at Amazon.)

Tags: books

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