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  • B498 Old Testament Theology II
    son of Shaphan as governor over the people who remained in the land of Judah whom King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had left Now when all the captains of the forces and their men heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah as governor they came with their men to Gedaliah at Mizpah namely Ishmael son of Nethaniah Johanan son of Kareah Seraiah son of Tanhumeth the Netophathite and Jaazaniah son of the Maacathite Gedaliah swore to them and their men saying Do not be afraid because of the Chaldean officials live in the land serve the king of Babylon and it shall be well with you But in the seventh month Ishmael son of Nethaniah son of Elishama of the royal family came with ten men they struck down Gedaliah so that he died along with the Judeans and Chaldeans who were with him at Mizpah Then all the people high and low and the captains of the forces set out and went to Egypt for they were afraid of the Chaldeans In the thirty seventh year of the exile of King Jehoiachin of Judah in the twelfth month on the twenty seventh day of the month King Evil merodach of Babylon in the year that he began to reign released King Jehoiachin of Judah from prison he spoke kindly to him and gave him a seat above the other seats of the kings who were with him in Babylon So Jehoiachin put aside his prison clothes Every day of his life he dined regularly in the king s presence For his allowance a regular allowance was given him by the king a portion every day as long as he lived Even though the nation is in exile there is still hope according to the Deuteronomistic theologian If Israel would only be faithful to Yahweh all would be well That is the theology of the Deuteronomist b Isaiah through Malachi ASSIGNMENT Read Isaiah through Malachi von Rad volume 2 Part 1 chapters A G The Deuteronomist concluded his work with 2 Kings In the Hebrew Bible this is immediately followed by the so called writing prophets or Isaiah through Malachi This is the segment which we will now investigate Ex 4 16 gives a very simple definition of what it means to be a prophet The Hebrew word navi is translated by the Greek words pro and phiemi This Hebrew word literally means to bubble forth to express Likewise the Greek words mean to speak to or towards Thus a prophet is not a foreteller of the future but a forthteller one who speaks to someone on behalf of someone else Many Old Testament scholars believe that originally prophets were part of the servants of the local sanctuary That is they were oracle givers at the local shrine while the priests handled the sacrificial side of the business cf Jer 29 24ff and I Sam 10 10ff But prophets evidently also served as leaders in times of war leading the army of God into battle and blessing them as they go cf I Kin 20 13 14 22 28 22 6 12 15 20 2 Kin 3 16 17 6 9 One of the most interesting aspects of the prophetic literature is the fact that prophets were active primarily during the monarchy That is before the time that Israel had a King there is no prophetic activity to speak of and after the demise of the Kingship there are only a few prophets active and they minor ones at best It seems then that prophecy was a counterbalance to the possible abuse of power which a monarchy carried in its wake Thus it is safe to say that when one reads the prophets one must understand their theology as essentially anti monarchy Israel was better off in the minds of the prophets when God alone was their leader as in the wilderness Kings bring only trouble Even David led the nation astray Prophets speak for God The following texts are ample proof of this Amos 7 1 17 This is what the Lord God showed me he was forming locusts at the time the latter growth began to sprout it was the latter growth after the king s mowings When they had finished eating the grass of the land I said O Lord God forgive I beg you How can Jacob stand He is so small The Lord relented concerning this It shall not be said the Lord This is what the Lord God showed me the Lord God was calling for a shower of fire and it devoured the great deep and was eating up the land Then I said O Lord God cease I beg you How can Jacob stand He is so small The Lord relented concerning this This also shall not be said the Lord God This is what he showed me the Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line with a plumb line in his hand And the Lord said to me Amos what do you see And I said A plumb line Then the Lord said See I am setting a plumb line in the midst of my people Israel I will never again pass them by the high places of Isaac shall be made desolate and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to King Jeroboam of Israel saying Amos has conspired against you in the very center of the house of Israel the land is not able to bear all his words For thus Amos has said Jeroboam shall die by the sword and Israel must go into exile away from his land And Amaziah said to Amos O seer go flee away to the land of Judah earn your bread there and prophesy there but never again prophesy at Bethel for it is the king s

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  • Essay Questions for B498 - Old Testament Theology II
    form of a one page essay and submit them to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading Use the Bible and the reading assignments as sources for your answers 1 Read a commentary on one of the following books and write a summary of its theology Ezekiel Jeremiah Amos 2 Describe is as much detail as possible the theology of the Deuteronomist 3 After reading the first

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  • B499 Old Testament Theology III
    harm happens to the righteous but the wicked are filled with trouble Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord but those who act faithfully are his delight One who is clever conceals knowledge but the mind of a fool broadcasts folly The hand of the diligent will rule while the lazy will be put to forced labor Anxiety weighs down the human heart but a good word cheers it up The righteous gives good advice to friends but the way of the wicked leads astray The lazy do not roast their game but the diligent obtain precious wealth In the path of righteousness there is life in walking its path there is no death The Fear of God is the beginning of wisdom That is reverence for God helps people put their priorities in order When a person s life is in order then God is the center of that life Wisdom helps people cope with reality See for example Proverbs 14 The wise woman builds her house but the foolish tears it down with her own hands Those who walk uprightly fear the Lord but one who is devious in conduct despises him The talk of fools is a rod for their backs but the lips of the wise preserve them Where there are no oxen there is no grain abundant crops come by the strength of the ox A faithful witness does not lie but a false witness breathes out lies A scoffer seeks wisdom in vain but knowledge is easy for one who understands Leave the presence of a fool for there you do not find words of knowledge It is the wisdom of the clever to understand where they go but the folly of fools misleads Fools mock at the guilt offering but the upright enjoy God s favor The heart knows its own bitterness and no stranger shares its joy The house of the wicked is destroyed but the tent of the upright flourishes There is a way that seems right to a person but its end is the way to death Even in laughter the heart is sad and the end of joy is grief The perverse get what their ways deserve and the good what their deeds deserve The simple believe everything but the clever consider their steps The wise are cautious and turn away from evil but the fool throws off restraint and is careless One who is quick tempered acts foolishly and the schemer is hated The simple are adorned with folly but the clever are crowned with knowledge The evil bow down before the good the wicked at the gates of the righteous The poor are disliked even by their neighbors but the rich have many friends Those who despise their neighbors are sinners but happy are those who are kind to the poor Do they not err that plan evil Those who plan good find loyalty and faithfulness In all toil there is profit but mere talk leads only to poverty The crown of the wise is their wisdom but folly is the garland of fools A truthful witness saves lives but one who utters lies is a betrayer In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence and one s children will have a refuge The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life so that one may avoid the snares of death The glory of a king is a multitude of people without people a prince is ruined Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding but one who has a hasty temper exalts folly A tranquil mind gives life to the flesh but passion makes the bones rot Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker but those who are kind to the needy honor him The wicked are overthrown by their evildoing but the righteous find a refuge in their integrity Wisdom is at home in the mind of one who has understanding but it is not known in the heart of fools Righteousness exalts a nation but sin is a reproach to any people A servant who deals wisely has the king s favor but his wrath falls on one who acts shamefully Wisdom sometimes applied still does not yield the expected results Two of the most famous examples of this are Job and Ecclesiastes When one reads Job one reads the story of a man who did all the right things but who nonetheless suffered Cf Job 3 After this Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth Job said Let the day perish in which I was born and the night that said A man child is conceived Let that day be darkness May God above not seek it or light shine on it Let gloom and deep darkness claim it Let clouds settle upon it let the blackness of the day terrify it That night let thick darkness seize it let it not rejoice among the days of the year let it not come into the number of the months Yes let that night be barren let no joyful cry be heard in it Let those curse it who curse the Sea those who are skilled to rouse up Leviathan Let the stars of its dawn be dark let it hope for light but have none may it not see the eyelids of the morning because it did not shut the doors of my mother s womb and hide trouble from my eyes Why did I not die at birth come forth from the womb and expire Why were there knees to receive me or breasts for me to suck Now I would be lying down and quiet I would be asleep then I would be at rest with kings and counselors of the earth who rebuild ruins for themselves or with princes who have gold who fill their houses with silver Or why was I not buried like a stillborn child like an infant

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  • Essay Questions for B499 - Old Testament Theology III
    of the following questions in the form of a one page essay and submit them to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading Use the Bible and the reading assignments as sources for your answers 1 Using all of your resources and readings comment on the meaning of three Psalms of your choice 2 Outline the basic teachings of the Wisdom tradition 3 What is the central

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  • B311 New Testament Theology
    not only to the Jew but to the gentile as well and in particular to the Roman gentile The Theology of Mark does not therefore contradict the theology of Jesus it simply applies it to the wider audience of Romans for whom Mark is concerned Lecture 4 The Theology of Matthew ASSIGNMENT Read Caird chapter 3 and Matthew As Mark takes his seat the next theologian to approach the podium is Matthew He is a rabbi and he will direct his remarks to the Jewish members of the audience Just as Mark wrote for the Romans Matthew wrote for the Jews in order to demonstrate to them that Jesus was the Messiah that was promised by the prophets Just as Jesus is the one who acts in Mark in Matthew Jesus is the one who teaches the New Moses He teaches on the mountain and reminds his hearers that the law is important He derides the Pharisees and attacks the hypocrites The theology of Matthew is Jewish Christian theology that is never again approached in the New Testament until James and Hebrews With Old Testament in hand and with a vocabulary rich in allusions and metaphors derived from it he musters the troops and storms the wall of Judaism and its sometimes legalistic approach to God The action in Matthew is fast paced 5 1 8 17 is one days worth of activity 8 18 9 9 is the action of the next day 9 10 9 34 is yet another day and 12 22 13 52 is another The stories which Matthew tells from the life of Jesus serve to support his theological perspective He is Lord as can be seen from 14 28 31 and 17 24 27 The genealogy of chapter 1 shows that Jesus is the son of David the Messiah And he is called the Son of God cf 14 33 Because Jesus is who he is and because he teaches what he teaches people stream to him cf 4 25 26 He is more popular than the scribes or Pharisees And because he is more popular his opponents decide to kill him But he does not remain in the tomb for the Messiah must live Thus the whole of Matthew s theology is aimed at showing that Jesus is the Messiah who lives forever more Lecture 5 The Theology of Luke ASSIGNMENT Read Caird chapter 4 and Luke and Acts Luke wrote for the Greeks His Gospel is summarized when he reports the message of Jesus in the synagogue at Capernaum cf 4 16 30 Immediately following this event we have the report of the epiphany of Jesus to his disciples cf 5 1 11 These two texts taken together are an exact summary of the work of Jesus and the work of his disciples As in the other Gospels Jesus is teacher and healer But an interesting expansion take place in regards to the circle of disciples Luke speaks of the 12 of course but he enlarges the circle of Jesus followers immensely cf 6 13 6 17 and 6 20ff as well as 10 17 This large group of disciples spend time with Jesus and frequently question and answer him The uniqueness of Luke lies in the stress he places on the disciples frequent fellowship with Jesus and that is just the point for if a disciple is to remain faithful then he must ever cling to Jesus The book of Acts is simply an extension of this central concept When the disciples stick to Jesus then though their lives are threatened and even taken they can rest in the certainty that Jesus will stick by them When this is done the Gospel continues to be spread unhindered by anything cf the end of Acts Lecture 6 The Theology of John ASSIGNMENT Read Caird Chapter 5 and the Gospel of John 1 3 John and Revelation When John approaches the lectern to share his thoughts with the assembled colloquium all realize that apart from Paul he has the most to say His students and disciples make up the second largest segment of the crowd and they are eager to hear him or to put it in another way John has almost as many researchers as Paul John s works the Gospel the three epistles and the Revelation make up the second greatest segment of the New Testament after the Pauline corpus Note we shall leave aside here the debate as to whether or not John wrote all of this material as we shall leave aside the question of Paul s authorship of the letters attributed to him We will focus on the theology of these writings which are clearly related regardless of authorship As Matthew wrote to the Jews and Mark to the Romans and Luke to the Greeks John addressed those Christians who either were or who leaned towards gnosticism His whole corpus is directed towards correcting the errors of the Gnostics By the way in Church History we note that John is the writer most often used in opposition to heresy of every shade And what is the central message of these writings Jesus is victorious over every opponent Thus when one is a follower of Jesus one is on the side which will ultimately be victorious To summarize the major lines of John s thought I will simply list them 1 Jesus is the ground of faith 2 Life in Jesus is New Life 3 The Cross is the central event of time and eternity 4 The Spirit is the Spirit of Jesus given to the community for its benefit 5 The Gospel is the only source of Hope The theology of John is Christocentric and polemical Christocentric because Jesus is the center and polemical because nothing is allowed to compete with Jesus as the center Lecture 7 The Theology of Paul ASSIGNMENT Read Caird Chapter 6 and Romans Philemon The most important theologian of the New Testament after

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  • New Testament Theology Questions
    form of a one page essay typed and doublespaced and submit them to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading Use the Bible and the reading assignments from Caird as sources for your answers 1 Describe fully the Theology of Jesus 2 List the major themes of Paul s theology and describe how he is still important today 3 Discuss the central concern of the letter to

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  • Apologetics 1
    notice in reading the Bible that no two evangelistic presentations are alike Learn something from that 2 What is to be defended The hope that you have We are not in the business of trying to apologize for the actions of other Christians or ourselves We are sinners Admit that and accept the fact of wrong doing in the course of church history and in the Christian church of today Yes the televagelists are scum Yes the church is filled with hypocrites Yes there is often legalistic self righteousness arrogance boastful pride power mongering self serving But how is this different from the world at large Certainly Christians SHOULD be different But they aren t usually That is unfortunate and makes the defense of Christianity that is the positive portrayal of Christ all the more difficult But remember the central issue must remain Christ If YOU or I are the issue then we ve messed up already and this verse explains what we need to be doing II Theistic Evidence John Calvin wrote Some worthy persons feel disconcerted because while the wicked murmur with impunity at the word of God they have not a clear proof at hand to silence them forgetting that the Spirit is called an earnest and seal to confirm the faith of the godly for this very reason that until he enlightens their minds they are tossed to and fro in a sea of doubts Does God exist The Bible offers no arguments for God instead it simply assumes Him Why Because the existence of God cannot be proven On the other hand it is equally certain that God cannot be disproven Much to our dismay as theists people who believe in God we cannot hold up a smoking gun and triumphantly state Ahah The anti

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  • Mystical Experience Argument
    child on a railroad track who is playing around the bend from an approaching train so that neither the child nor the train s engineer know of the other s location The child s poor mother is up the hill from this developing tragedy and can see both her son and the train but because of distance is unable to do anything Suddenly the train slows and comes to a halt only a few feet from her child The mother thanks God for the miracle which she never ceases to think of as such although as she in due course learns there was nothing supernatural about the manner in which the brakes of the train came to be applied The driver had fainted for a reason that had nothing to do with the presence of the child on the line and the brakes were applied automatically as his hand ceased to exert pressure on the control lever R F Holland The Miraculous American Philosophical Quarterly 1965 pp 43 51 Such a story shows an amazing coincidence Therefore some have argued that we need to postulate two types of miracles the violation of nature miracle and the coincidence miracle While in the second sort of miracle God does not seem to violate any law of nature the coincidence is such as to seemingly betray his hand However probability theory is sufficient to explain such coincidences and in fact we might even say we should expect them Furthermore while many coincidences can be listed which resulted in amazing rescues and last minute salvations in like manner one can list amazing coincidences where horrible disaster was the result Therefore it can be argued that so long as both the good and the bad coincidences are explainable individually by ordinary chance there is no need to suspect supernatural involvement While supernatural intervention cannot be shown to exist it likewise must be admitted by the skeptic that such supernatural involvement cannot automatically be denied unless he begins with the presupposition that God does not exist or there is no supernatural or there are natural explanations for everything Such axioms are no more or less valid than their opposites since like the axiom God exists they are unprovable Keith Lehrer writes The more usual attempt to justify belief in God on the basis of miracles however is premised on the existence of violation miracles If there are grounds to believe that some law of nature confirmed to hold universally has been violated in such a way that some disaster has been averted or someone aided or some insight received then this is surely some evidence for justifying the claim that occasionally God has intervened in the natural course of things either to bring about a miracle or to reveal something Are there then grounds for believing that there have been miraculous violations of laws of nature The most celebrated attempt to deny such grounds is that made by David Hume Keith Lehrer Philosophical Problems and Arguments

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