A Great Deal about Penal Substition and other Theories of Atonement

PST – Penal Substitution theory… When I was coming up, I don’t think I ever heard the term. Not that it wasn’t a current theory. Just that it was called by a different name: “God’s plan of Salvation”. At least PST was supposed to be an element within God’s plan. It was usually phrased in terms [...]

Bible Podcasts

This post is a plug for two podcasts that have kept me entertained on a number of car-rides over the past few months. If you have any interest at all in the Bible or early Christianity, I can’t recommend them enough. There’s a fair amount of overlap on subject matter, at least where it concerns [...]

A Good Debate

via James McGrath, a debate between Bart Ehrman, former fundamentalist who through Biblical scholarship became a very liberal skeptic, and Craig Evans, an evangelical Bible scholar. Oral debates are, in my view, more often counterproductive than helpful to the project of helping people get a better and deeper grasp on areas of study that are [...]

Defending Penal Substitution (or not)

Ken Pulliam, a former fundamentalist, has possibly a bigger beef with the notion of penal substitutionary theory of atonement than I do. His latest is a response to another effort to defend the theory from the charges that this theory turns the notion of “justice” on its head: distorts it into something wicked, then attributes that [...]

Bible Socialism

This is just a quick thought-dump… And post title not-withstanding, I would never try to project modern socio-economic theories onto the socio-economic systems of ancient cultures: that would be comparing apples to eggs. So, whether or not this bit is a definitive and responsible estimate of the Levitical system of civil finance it is [...]

Be the Angel

Without thinking Angels (or even Abraham or Isaac) are or were real, and without feeling it is strictly necessary to go find a positive message where nothing truly positive was originally intended in passages from the Jewish and Christian scriptures, I’m nonetheless moved by this (reformed) Rabbinic take on the Abraham / Isaac story, left as [...]


I notice that James McGrath took up the ConservativeBible Project this morning, too. It must be going around. But today I have a serious question…

Regarding that “resourceful” manager of Luke 16, what does that parable really mean? Briefly, the rich man is getting ready to fire the bad steward, the bad steward [...]

They knew EXACTLY what they were doing…

I’m laughing as I write this. Today, I received a tip from dear friend Elaine W. She said I should check out the ConservativeBible Project at Conservapedia. Now, I know that the good people at Conservapedia probably aren’t aware that the NIV is the preferred translation of conservative Christians (who are somehow unaware that the [...]

How Many is God?

Not long ago, in an adult RE forum, a fellow enthusiast suggested that neither the apostles nor Jesus himself could have believed that Jesus was God, because they were all good, monotheistic Jews. I interrupted, even though I agree with him that Jesus and the apostles probably held a lower Christology than anything found in [...]

Sloppy Thinking

As promised, not a criticism of the right… And, not my own. Just an illustration of the kind of thinking that leads one down a dead-end alley and holds one there permanently. Illustrated beautifully in the words of James McGrath.

In brief:

(1) Both show a lack of familiarity with the basic data in a [...]