Jurisprudence without the Prudence, 2

Some of the most widely neglected sections of the Bible—sections often skipped over by those who begin the new year with a good resolve to read the Bible through—are sections that contain case law ( e.g., Ex. 21-23). These are sections designed for use by the judges of Israel to guide them in rendering just judgments in the cases that come before them. The laws seem irrelevant to many modern readers because they were given in the ancient world to a people living an agrarian lifestyle and having customs very different from our own. But a careful reading of these laws, with an understanding of their historical and cultural contexts, will amply repay the effort by revealing basic principles of justice and imparting wisdom for daily life (Deut. 4:6; Ps. 119:98; Prov. 28:5). In a previous post we examined the not so prudent jurisprudence of Islamic law regarding theft in light of the prudent jurisprudence of biblical case law. A recent story in the news caught my eye today that furth

The Will to Disbelieve - Feuerbach, Freud, and Friends - Atheism as Wish Fulfillment

Few things are as important to understand about man as the two foundational truths that he is created in the image of God, and he is fallen. [1] The first ensures that the existence of God is something man cannot not know; the second that some men will nevertheless deny that they know it. The image of God in man is the basis for what Calvin refers to as a sensus divinitatis. “There is,” he says, “within the human mind, and indeed by natural instinct, an awareness of divinity .” [2] He observes further, To prevent anyone from taking refuge in the pretense of ignorance, God himself has implanted in all men a certain understanding of his divine majesty… Since, therefore, men one and all perceive that there is a God and that he is their Maker, they are condemned by their own testimony because they have failed to honor him and to consecrate their lives to his will. [3] Furthermore, this “awareness of divinity” is inescapable. The conviction…that there is some God, is naturally i

Encourage One Another

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:7 I have long had a great appreciation for a relatively obscure New Testament figure named Barnabas. His original name was Joseph, but when he came to believe in Jesus, the apostles called him Barnabas, meaning “son of encouragement” (Acts 4:36). Later passages suggest why. After Saul of Tarsus, a Pharisee and notorious persecutor, was confronted by the Lord on the road to Damascus, he attempted to join the disciples in Jerusalem, but they were afraid of him. They didn’t believe he had become a disciple of Jesus. They thought he was perpetrating a ruse intended to trap them. “ But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles and declared to them how on the road he had seen the Lord, who spoke to him, and how at Damascus he had preached boldly in the name of Jesus” (Acts 9:27). Barnabas had either been approached by Saul or had been told that Saul was trying to make contact with t