In case you haven’t heard, social media has garnered quite the reputation. Whether you’re talking about the perniciousness of Twitter-fueled outrage, the placidity of hashtag activism, the propensity to waste hours of your life, the easy propagation of fake news, or the paucity of meaningful conversation, social media is often viewed negatively.
But social media isn’t all bad. Or, at least, it doesn’t have to be. In its best moments, social media still accomplishes its purpose quite well: connecting people in ways that were unthinkable just decades ago. For example, social media helps my family stay in touch with one another, even though we’re spread across four states, three time zones, and some 6,250 miles of distance. The immediacy and accessibility of social media platforms lets us communicate with one another in close to real time, helping us remain close.
Of course, not every use of social media leaves us with warm fuzzies. Undoubtedly, everyone reading this can recall at least one time when they’ve considered deactivating or otherwise no longer using a particular platform or application. My suggestion is this: establishing a few good social media habits can help us stay sane and lead to generally positive social media interactions.1 Continue reading
Welcome to the October 2018 Biblical Studies Carnival—and Happy All Saints’ Day!
I’m honored to be hosting this honorable event on this sacred day of remembering all those who have gone before in faith. Before we get on with the business of remembering all the best Biblical Studies articles from this past month, first the business of future carnivals.
- Bob McDonald will be hosting the November 2018 carnival (due December 1, 2018).
- Christopher Scott will be hosting the December 2018 carnival (due January 1, 2019).
As carnival Godfather Phil Long has made clear in recent months, we need additional volunteers for future carnivals—especially for January 2019 and forward. If you’re interested in hosting, contact the good doctor (email, @plong42) and let him know your availability. And speaking of Phil, I want to thank him for continuing to curate these carnivals.
Now, on to the main attractions, which have been categorized in the following groups: Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, New Testament, Early Christianity, Reading Phil Long, Theology and Hermeneutics, Book Reviews, and News. Happy reading! Continue reading
If you read one article this week, engage The Long Theological Shadow by John Ehrett.
For those of you with additional reading time, check out the following selections, gathered from around the blogging world. Happy reading! Continue reading
In Joshua 8:2, Yahweh seems to command the indiscriminate killing of the inhabitants of the city of Ai: “And you shall do to Ai and its king as you did to Jericho and its king. Only its spoil and its livestock you shall take as plunder for yourselves. Lay an ambush against the city, behind it.” If this were said today, it would widely be regarded as a command to commit genocide. The severity of the command seems validated by what Joshua records about the battle (vv. 24-25):
24 When Israel had finished killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the open wilderness where they pursued them, and all of them to the very last had fallen by the edge of the sword, all Israel returned to Ai and struck it down with the edge of the sword. 25 And all who fell that day, both men and women, were 12,000, all the people of Ai.
This account—and others like it in the Old Testament—are often viewed as problematic for contemporary Christians. How can a God of love command murder? How can the God who says “love your enemies” have ordered their destruction? These are, in my estimation, entirely legitimate questions worth wrestling with.
In what follows, I hope to breakdown some of the key aspects of thinking through the question of whether or not God commanded genocide and (some of) what that means for Christians today. Continue reading
If you read one article this week, engage Leadership and Suicide: When Ending It Seems Like the Only Way Out by Carey Nieuwhof
For those of you with additional reading time this fine September (!) day, check out the following selections gathered from around the blogging world. Happy reading! Continue reading
If you read one article this week, look at Doctrine is Inevitable by Samuel James.
For those of you with additional reading time, check out the following suggestions, gathered from around the interwebs. Happy reading! Continue reading
If you read one article this week, engage The Great Commission Starts in Your Backyard by Noel Green Estes.
For those of you with additional reading time weekend, check out the following selections, gathered from around the interwebs. Happy reading! Continue reading
I am excited to announce that I am joining the staff at Rooftop Church as Pastor of Church-Planting, effective today!
Rooftop on a Sunday morning
Rooftop is a non-denominational, Bible-centered church committed to “making followers of Christ who make followers of Christ who make followers of Christ….” Located in Affton (a community in the St. Louis County metro area), Rooftop is a vibrant, growing church that’s devoted to reaching St. Louis with the Gospel. One unique thing about Rooftop is their commitment to “mere Christianity,” a big-tent approach to faith that focuses on essentials and living as disciples rather than dividing over nuanced doctrinal points.
Friends and regular readers of Pursuing Veritas will be familiar with our ministry at The Rock Church of Saint Louis the past three-and-a-half years, as well as our two year “church search” before that. Hayley and I have learned so much over the past several years of ministry, life, and education. We have grown and benefited from so many friendships and experiences.
After many years of praying, discussing, and inquiring into church-planting, this Rooftop position came to our attention right as we were facing some uncertainty about our future plans. We firmly believe that God has whispered into our lives for such a time as this, and we are extremely excited to start this new chapter of our lives and faith journeys.
I am honored and humbled to be beginning this vocational work for the Kingdom, and I look forward to all that God will be doing in and through Rooftop in the future. And I look forward to sharing here about our experiences and adventures during this journey.
Best and Blessings, Jacob Prahlow Continue reading
If you read one article this week, engage Letter to an Aspiring Theologian by Kevin Vanhoozer.
For those of you with additional reading time this weekend, check out the following suggestions, gathered from around the interwebs. Happy reading! Continue reading
If you read one article this week, check out How to Think about Patriotism by Wilfred McClay.
For those of you with extra reading time this summer weekend, look at the following links, gathered from around the interwebs these past few weeks. Happy Reading! Continue reading