Paul and the Elemental Spirits in Colossians and Galatians

In Colossians 2 Paul urges his readers to be set free from the elemental spirits of the world (ta stoicheia tou kosmou; Col 2:8,20). 8 See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ. … Continue reading Paul and the Elemental Spirits in Colossians and Galatians

The Broader Significance of God’s Promise to Hagar

The biblical stories are meant to shape our perspectives, values, and choices. In my last post I explained why and how English translations have misunderstood God's promise to Hagar, leading often to an Arab-demeaning reading of that passage. Now here is an excerpt from Gordon Wenham's commentary on Genesis to show why Hagar's story is … Continue reading The Broader Significance of God’s Promise to Hagar

God’s Promise to Hagar in Genesis 16: Resolving a problematic text

God made an incredible promise to Hagar in Genesis 16:12. However, the true meaning of the promise gets lost in translation. This is because our English translations typically render this verse in a pejorative manner. The sad thing about this is that these renderings have led to Arab-demeaning understandings of the text. This trend in … Continue reading God’s Promise to Hagar in Genesis 16: Resolving a problematic text

Spiritual Warfare: Pyrotechnics of the Pauline kind

Spiritual Warfare! Wrestling with demonic powers. This is quite the topic. I can't do that topic justice. It would take a book. So, in this post, I will limit myself to three points. First, I will define what Spiritual Warfare is in the context of the Letter to the Ephesians. Second, I will show how … Continue reading Spiritual Warfare: Pyrotechnics of the Pauline kind

The WEA Independent Panel’s Report in the light of the FOBAI Principles and Postcolonial Theological Praxis and Discourse

Two years ago I wrote this paper to try to explain why the WEA Independent Panel's Report examining SIL's principles of translation for Religious Idiom Translations was significantly flawed. Very few people had access to that report, which was quite unfortunate. Since I had access to it, I made this analysis of the report. Enjoy … Continue reading The WEA Independent Panel’s Report in the light of the FOBAI Principles and Postcolonial Theological Praxis and Discourse

The problem with the word “biblical”

The word biblical is problematic. Think about how it is sometimes used in conversations: "But it's biblical!" "This is the biblical teaching." If a teaching is "biblical" how can anyone disagree with it? It is kind of like when people say: "The Lord told me." or "The Lord showed me." When the Lord showed them something, … Continue reading The problem with the word “biblical”