Wednesday 26 October 2022

Journal of Biblical Theology and Worldview 3, 1 (2022)

The latest issue of the Journal of Biblical Theology and Worldview, published by BJU Seminary, has recently been made available online.

Contents as below are available from here, with the whole issue available for download as a pdf here.

Kristopher Endean

“My People Are Destroyed for Lack of Knowledge”: Spiritual Ignorance and the Voice of the Prophets

Timothy Hughes

Save Yourself and Your Hearers: The Relationship between the Minister’s Sanctification and Ministry Effectiveness in 1 Timothy

Joshua Jensen

Ruth and the Covenant Heir: Reading Ruth in Light of Isaac’s Famine and Sojourn

Mark Sidwell

“The Mirror of the Prince”: Machiavelli, Erasmus, and Luther on Guidance for the Ruler

Layton Talbert

Interpreting the New Covenant in Light of Its Multiplexity, Multitextuality, and Ethnospecificity

Book Reviews 

Saturday 22 October 2022

The Gospel Coalition Biblical Commentaries

The Gospel Coalition has launched a commentaries section on their website. It’s not complete at the moment, but looks like it could be a very helpful resource.

Check it out here.

Wednesday 19 October 2022

9Marks Journal (October 2022) on Church Administration

The latest issue of the 9Marks Journal, available from here in various formats, looks at ‘The Pastor and Church Administration’.

In the Editor’s Note, Jonathan Leeman writes:

‘Church administration is not my favorite church topic. Probably not top twenty, in fact. Yet when you need it, you need it.

‘Who should you hire? When should you fire? How much should you pay? What job titles should you use? What about pastoral sabbaticals and retirement contributions? What’s a constitution good for? These might not be soul-energizing questions but answering them well is a mandate of love for the church…

‘Working together well and peaceably requires attending to administration.

‘We asked a number of lead pastors and administration or executive pastors to help us think through matters like staffing, building, budgets and other policies…

‘Pastors and deacons build up the body of Christ by caring for the staffing structures, pay policies, and building budgets. We pray this Journal will help.’

Monday 17 October 2022

The Master’s Seminary Journal 33, 2 (2022)

The latest Master’s Seminary Journal has been posted online, this one focused on the Messiah in the Old Testament.

A pdf of the journal can be downloaded here.

John MacArthur


Abner Chou

“They Were Not Serving Themselves, but You”: Reclaiming the Prophets’ Messianic Intention

This article defends the view that the Old Testament declares Christ from the beginning. However, we must discern Christ in the Old Testament by a careful study of the text and the intent of the text, not by reading new meaning back into the text. The authors of the Old Testament wrote about the Messiah, they knew that other Old Testament authors wrote about the Messiah, and they formed a deep messianic theology. In light of this, it is incumbent upon us to be watchful for how the biblical writers use and reuse words and phrases, how they form connections and patterns, and how they make linguistically distinctive associations in order to develop a messianic theology. In this way, we will be able to identify the messianic character and purpose of the Old Testament authors, and we shall see where they were “predicting the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow” (1 Pet 1:11).

Iosif J. Zhakevich

Reverse of the Curse: An Allusion to Genesis 3:15 in Psalm 110:1

This study proposes that when David penned Psalm 110:1, he was thinking of Genesis 3:15. The linguistic, literary, and theological correlations between Genesis 3:15 and Psalm 110:1 recommend the conclusion that Psalm 110:1 is consciously alluding to Genesis 3:15. That is to say, the statement in Psalm 110:1 “Until I put Your enemies as a footstool for Your feet” hearkens back to the statement in Genesis 3:15 “And I will put enmity between you and the woman,” in order to cast the text of Psalm 110:1 in light of the text of Genesis 3:15. This allusion to Genesis 3:15, in effect, achieves within Psalm 110:1 a cosmic theological message – the reversal of the curse. These conclusions are further substantiated by the broader interconnectedness between Psalm 110 and Genesis 3:15, by the general association of Psalm 110:1 and Genesis 3 in 1 Corinthians 15:21–28, and by the specific combination of Psalm 110:1 and Genesis 3:15 in Romans 16:20.

Paul Twiss

A Tale of Two Brothers: The Messiah in Genesis 49

Biblical theological efforts to trace the hope of a Messiah have often read Genesis 49:8–12 in isolation from 49:22–26, the blessings of chapter 48, and the Jacob tôledôt as a whole. In turn, this has led to an overly simplistic rendering of Israel’s history – one that neglects the importance of Joseph’s line throughout the remainder of the OT. This paper seeks to address this matter and examine the nature of Jacob’s promises to Judah, in light of those given to Joseph. While both of these brothers play a prominent role in the book of Genesis, at the end of the narrative it is the younger son, Joseph, who receives the blessing of the first-born. Although no comment is made regarding the immediate status of Judah, Jacob’s words anticipate an eventual deliverer who will come from the line of his fourth-born son. This study explains the initial prominence of certain Josephites in Israel’s history, and the subsequent transition wherein God rejects the tribe of Ephraim, and raises up the line of Judah, through which comes the Messiah.

Todd Bolen

The Messiah in Isaiah 7:14: The Virgin Birth

Many evangelical scholars deny that Isaiah’s prophecy of a virgin giving birth to Immanuel directly predicts the birth of Jesus, arguing that the words and syntax of Isaiah 7:14 demand fulfillment in the time of King Ahaz. This article provides three arguments to support a messianic-only interpretation. First, the greater context of chapters 1–12 consistently anticipates immediate judgment upon the nation, with Judah’s hope lying beyond exile when God takes up residence with his people. Second, hermeneutical proposals of double fulfillment are shown to be unconvincing because they lack any basis in the text. Third, analysis of Isaiah 7:14–17 reveals that an 8th-century fulfillment is impossible given the nature of the sign, the meaning of almah, the syntax of the announcement, as well as the child’s name, role, diet, and character. A closer look at the timeline in Isaiah 7:16–17 shows that Immanuel could only be born after the land of Judah was laid waste, a reality that did not occur in the 8th century. This study thus concludes that Matthew and the early church exercised sound exegetical and hermeneutical principles in identifying Jesus as the sole fulfillment of the Isaiah 7:14 prophecy.

Bryan Murphy

Priest According to the Order of Melchizedek

The Messianic Hope of Israel includes more than just the right to rule over all the nations from the Davidic throne. It also incorporates a replacement of the Aaronic priesthood with a priesthood patterned after that of Melchizedek. The evidence for this is found in the predictive promise made by Yahweh through David in Psalm 110. In the New Testament, the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews explains and applies this same promise as a justification for the superiority of Christ to both the Aaronic priesthood and the entire Old Testament sacrificial system. This article will present the case for the Messiah being not only one with a rightful claim to sovereignty over all nations, but also as one appointed eternally as the mediator between God and men.

David Zadok

The Messiah in the Minor Prophets

The Minor Prophets – or, The Twelve – contain an abundance of messianic prophecies that contribute to the anticipation of the coming of the Messiah in the Scriptures. Following the broader storyline of judgment and hope, one finds this thread weaving the Twelve together through the nature of the prophetic ministry to even the historical context in which the ministry of the Minor Prophets occurs. As one grasps this storyline throughout the Twelve, the role of these messianic texts becomes clear as they function to expound the coming hope for a nation that had seen God’s judgment. This paper will study these parts of the text to demonstrate the Messiah’s presence in the Minor Prophets.

Menachem I. Kalisher

Isaiah 52: The Identity and Ministry of the Servant of the LORD

Of paramount importance within the latter sections of the book of Isaiah is identifying the Servant of the LORD and comprehending the nature of His ministry. This paper seeks to unfold Isaiah 52 as the necessary context that informs the content of Isaiah 53:1–12, which is often seen as the lynchpin for understanding the identity and ministry of the Servant. This article shows that as one considers the identity and ministry of the Servant, the list of possible referents is narrowed to a single person, the God-Man Jesus Christ. This narrowing takes place in a variety of ways: through the marvelous deliverance achieved by the Servant, the Servant’s close relationship with Yahweh, the profound suffering to be endured by the Servant, and the Servant’s ultimate subjugation of His enemies.


Friday 14 October 2022

The Bible in Four Minutes

A few months back, I posted about ‘Six Beats One Story’, a new resource from Bible Society summing up the story of Scripture in six key scenes – Origins, Exodus, Exile, Messiah, Spirit, Home.

A new addition to the resource – ‘The Bible in Four Minutes’ – a spoken word animation, written and narrated by Dai Woolridge, is now available from here, and is well worth checking out.

Thursday 13 October 2022

Christopher Ash on the Biblical Story

Every month, The Good Book Company make available digital versions of one of their books at no charge. This month (October 2022) it’s Remaking a Broken World: The Heart of the Bible Story by Christopher Ash, which is available in exchange for an email address here.

It’s a helpful Bible overview based around the theme of the ‘gathering’ and ‘scattering’ of God’s people in the biblical storyline, emphasising that ‘the local church is at the heart of the Bible story, that it is close to the heart of the purposes of God, and that it is how a broken world will be remade’. This nicely complements other approaches which take a more ‘kingdom’-oriented approach to the biblical story.

Wednesday 12 October 2022

Southeastern Theological Review 13, 2 (Fall 2022)

The most-recent issue of the Southeastern Theological Review is online, containing the below essays centred around preaching – and particularly preaching Christ from the Old Testament. It is available as a pdf here.

Ronjour Locke

Introduction: Preaching the Word

Eric C. Redmond

The Use of Psalm 68 in Ephesians 4: A Typological Approach Toward a Solution

The grammatical changes Paul makes to the Greek quotation of Ps 68:18 (Ps 67:19 LXX) in Eph 4:8 raises a question about his hermeneutics. Some scholarly proposals for a solution include Paul’s misquotation of Scripture, a nuanced reading, a “reading” as opposed to “exegesis,” or use of an unknown Hebrew manuscript. At question in Paul’s quotation of the OT verse also is the identification of Moses as the ascending one in the Targum tradition. The Targum reading provides an avenue to consider Paul’s use as a typological reading of the exodus narrative in light of viewing Christ as the final ascending Moses in the work of redemption.

Ryan Ross

About Whom Does the Prophet Say This? The Implications of Prosopological Exegesis for Christ-Centered Preaching of the Psalms

Modern advocates of Christcentered preaching have championed typology as one of the best strategies to preach Christ from the Old Testament. In this article, I seek to show that when it comes to the book of Psalms, prosopological exegesis offers a better way to preach Christ from many of the Psalms than typology. To demonstrate this claim, I first define prosopological exegesis, then provide examples of the practice from early church Fathers. After this, Psalm 22 and 69 are used as “case studies” to demonstrate instances where the apostles interpreted the Psalms prosopologically. Finally, I discuss the implications of prosopological interpretation for Christcentered preaching of the Psalms, showing how it supplements typology as another exegetical practice to preach Christ from the Old Testament, and in many cases, provides a richer way to preach Christ from the Psalms than typology.

Jared Bumpers

Christ Crucified: The Necessity of Preaching Christ from All of Scripture

Must every sermon contain the gospel? This question has frustrated homileticians for the last several decades. While some homileticans argue preachers have a responsibility to preach Christ in every sermon, others argue preachers have a responsibility to preach the text (although they would affirm the importance of preaching Christ often). This article argues Christian preachers should preach Christ in every sermon and provides three reasons to substantiate this claim. First, the pattern of preaching in the New Testament was undeniably Christ-centered. Jesus, the apostles, and Paul embraced and practiced gospel-centered preaching. Second, Christ-centered preaching benefits the church. When Christ is preached, unbelievers are certain to hear the gospel and struggling Christians are comforted. Third, failing to preach Christ every week negatively affects the church. Christless preaching robs unbelievers of the opportunity to believe the gospel and withholds the true source of change from believers.

Adam Hughes

Expository Preaching with Biblical Contexts on the Horizon: Hebrews as a Sermonic Model

The rationale for and benefits of expository preaching have been well established in the field of homiletics. If a fair critique exists for this philosophy of preaching, however, it is that it is often seen as less applicable to the lives of the audience and therefore less effective in producing life change. One reason may be the hesitancy of practitioners to employ contextualization in their preaching. Perhaps the hesitancy lies in the concern that to do so could corrupt the meaning and intent of the pericope in the sermon. In this article, the author addresses this perceived and potential deficiency by arguing for the use of multiple levels of contextualization in expository preaching. In order to do so, four aspects of contextualization will be identified. Then, by using these aspects as a guide, the book of Hebrews, which has been recognized by contemporary scholarship as being sermonic, will be analyzed to offer both a biblical precedent for and model of a fourfold aspect of contextualization in expository preaching. Finally, five implications for contemporary preaching will be offered.

James R. Newheiser

Balanced Preaching: A Four-Legged Stool as a Model

While consecutive expository preaching has become the norm in many conservative churches, different preachers have different emphases. Some focus upon detailed expositions of the text so that their sermons sound like running commentaries. Other preachers emphasize certain favorite theological themes. Some rush straight into application, with little explanation of the text. In recent years, preaching in which the focus of every sermon is how the text fits into the history of redemption has become popular in certain circles. I have developed a model for my students in which each of these four emphases is treated like the legs of a stool. While some texts may call for more emphasis on one “leg,” every good sermon should have all four elements. Further more, over time, one’s preaching ministry should be balanced among these four aspects.

Interview with Jim Shaddix 

Book Reviews