D. A. Carson Explains the Essence and Importance of Biblical Theology

Jeremy Bouma on 19 hours ago. Tagged under ,,,.

The major contribution of the NIV Zondervan Study Bible is that it focuses on a biblical theology for personal Bible reading. Recently, D. A. Carson, general editor, was interviewed on John Piper’s podcast about this freshly-conceived study Bible. He explored the essence of biblical theology and why it matters to the devotional life of ordinary Christians.

First, he explained the two foci of biblical theology:

You work carefully with each book or corpus (e.g. the Synoptics) to understand what God is saying through that corpus at the time before exploring how it contributes to the canon. You track themes that run through the Bible, tying them together. There are 20 large themes and 60 smaller ones, which include atonement, covenant, messiah, and kingdom.

Carson closes by explaining why a study Bible that emphasizes biblical theology is important for lay readers. He…

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Genesis 1 – An Excerpt from South Asia Bible Commentary

ZA Blog on 1 day ago. Tagged under ,,,.

South Asia Bible CommentaryNow available! The South Asia Bible Commentary is a one-volume commentary, written and edited by South Asian Biblical scholars on all the books of the Bible. Interact with these excerpts below from Genesis and discover how the editors overlay cultural insights throughout the commentary.


1:1-11:32 God, Humankind and Nature

What people believe about creation has important consequences for how they live. For example, the religious practices of those who believe that the universe arose from the sexual union of male and female deities often involve fertility rites similar to those of the Canaanite cult of Baal described in the OT. Thus it is appropriate that the Bible begins with chapters that assert that God created and controls the world and that he has…

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4 Things You Need to Know About the Holy Spirit’s Being and Nature

Jeremy Bouma on 3 days ago. Tagged under ,,,,,.

The Holy Spirit by Christopher HolmesWhat is the Holy Spirit? Who is the Holy Spirit? How does the Spirit do things? And what does the Spirit do?

Having come from an evangelical tradition that emphasized the Father and the Son at the expense of the Spirit, answers to these questions were mostly AWOL. In fact, it seems such is the case of evangelicalism broadly: a recent survey found 51% say the Holy Spirit isn’t a personal being, but a force. Only 42% affirm the 3rd person of the Trinity is a person.

In The Holy Spirit Christopher Holmes rectifies this confusion by providing concrete answers about the Holy Spirit’s identity, origin, and acts. It is the inaugural volume in the new New Studies in Dogmatics series that…

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Judgment and Snare of the Devil (1 Tim 3:6-7) – Mondays with Mounce 267

Bill Mounce on 4 days ago. Tagged under ,,,.

I am preparing a talk on leadership, so I have been spending some good time back in the Pastorals. I came across a great example of two genitives that are either subjective or objective genitives.

Remember the grammar. If the word in the genitive is doing (i.e., the subject) of the implied action in the head noun, it is a “subjective genitive.” If the word in the genitive is receiving (i.e., the object) of the implied action in the head noun, it is an “objective genitive.”

Paul tells Timothy that due to the importance of the office of overseer, it is essential (δεῖ) that the person not be “a recent convert, lest having become conceited, he fall into the judgment of the devil (κρίμα … τοῦ διαβόλου). And it is also necessary for an overseer to have a good reputation…

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eBook Flash Sale: WHAT’S BEST NEXT by Matt Perman

ZA Blog on 5 days ago. Tagged under ,.

What's Best Next by Matt PermanCan the Gospel transform the way you get things done? Matt Perman answers with a resounding ‘Yes!’ in What’s Best Next. For a limited time, purchase his ebook for just $3.99 and discover how to anchor your understanding of productivity in God’s purposes and plan.

What’s Best Next | Matt Perman Original: $21.99 | Sale: $3.99

Buy it Today: Amazon Barnes & Noble ChristianBook.com iBookstore

Act now, this flash sale price is valid through Wednesday, October 7th.


Tim Challies: “Perman teaches that true productivity is not getting more done, but getting the right things done—the things that serve others to the glory of God. He does not leave this as an idea for us to execute…

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Free Grace? – An Excerpt from Faith Alone

ZA Blog on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,,.

Faith Alone

Many have a hard time reconciling the words of Paul with the words of James on faith and works. Does “faith without deeds is useless” discount “faith alone”? In this excerpt from Faith Alone, Thomas Schreiner explores both, bringing the two into tension. Consider this excerpt from the first book in the “5 Solas Series.”


When some hear the Reformation cry of sola fide — “Faith alone!” — they assume that it means that good works are an optional part of the Christian life or that they play no role at all in our final justification or salvation. Such a perspective radically misunderstands the NT witness, while also distorting the historical and biblical meaning of sola fide. The NT clearly teaches that bare faith cannot save, and…

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Meet the Scholars Behind the NIV Zondervan Study Bible

Jeremy Bouma on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,.

One of the strengths of the new NIV Zondervan Study Bible is that it’s been forged and fashioned through the contributions of sixty scholars, drawn from around the world and across the denominational and theological spectrum. Contributors include:

Kevin DeYoung Tim Keller Karen Jobes Bruce Waltke Henri Blocher Craig Blomberg Simon Gathercole

Stewarding the notes and in-depth essays was a committee of five OT and NT scholars, including: D. A. Carson, Doug Moo, Richard Hess, T. D. Alexander, and Andy Naselli.

“While all good study Bibles shed light on the biblical text,” Alexander explains, “the NIV Zondervan Study Bible offers something fresh. It does so by drawing on the experience of gifted scholars who have a common desire to teach the word of God faithfully.”

Watch D. A. Carson introduce some of the NIV Zondervan Study Bible’s contributing scholars,…

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[Common Places] New Studies in Dogmatics: The Holy Spirit

Christopher Holmes on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,.

Zondervan Academic’s New Studies in Dogmatics series launches this fall with its first volume, Christopher Holmes’s The Holy Spirit, appearing in print this month. We will introduce readers to this work and engage with some of the doctrinal issues addressed therein over a series of four posts here at Common Places. In this first post, the author speaks to some of the germinal principles that shape his approach to the topic.


One of the reasons I wrote the book was to think through the matter of origins. Origins is one of the main concerns of Fourth Gospel. Jesus is repeatedly asked, “Where do you come from?” The question of origins is the question of antecedence, specifically the antecedent life of God. I wanted to think through why that life is important to describe in relation…

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Does the Bible Teach ‘Faith Alone’?

Jeremy Bouma on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,,.

Faith AloneSola fide has been the rallying cry for generations of Christians. Yet in his new book Tom Schreiner wonders, “Does sola fide still matter today?”

Faith Alone is one of five new resources exploring the five sola rallying cries of the Reformation (including sola scriptura, solus Christus, sola gratis, and soli Deo gloria). In this volume Schreiner offers a historical, biblical and theological tour of the doctrine of justification.

Last week we examined one reason why ‘faith alone’ matters: the early church taught it. Schreiner makes the point, though, that “as Protestants we believe in sola scriptura. We must, in the end, turn to what the Scriptures say and cannot simply rely on tradition or interpretations from the past.” (97)

In other words, does the Bible teach faith alone?

Schreiner leads…

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The Vanilla δέ (Matt 28:16) – Mondays with Mounce 266

Bill Mounce on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,.

The final sequence of events in Matthew 28 raises an interesting question about the δέ in v 16.

The angel told Mary and Mary to tell the disciples that they should go to Galilee to see the risen Jesus 9 (v 7), a command repeated by Jesus in v 10.

“While they were on their way” (Πορευομένων), Matthew tells us about the priests’ bribing the soldiers.

V 16 concludes, “So (δέ) the eleven disciples went to Galilee to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.” The question is, how do you translate the δέ?

1. If Matthew is making the point that the disciples obeyed the angel and Jesus, δέ can be translated as “so” (NET).

2. If δέ is a continuation of the temporal participle πορευομένων, it can be translated “then” (NIV, NLT, KJV).

3. If the…

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How to Season Your Speech with Salt – Spotlight on WBC: Colossians-Philemon, $9.99 for a Limited Time

ZA Blog on 1 week ago. Tagged under ,,,,.

Com_Meme_9 Col

Did you know there’s just a little time left in the Word Biblical Commentary sale at Logos, Accordance, Olive Tree, and WORDsearch?

This sale includes Peter T. O’Brien’s classic volume on Colossians and Philemon. Read an excerpt from Colossians-Philemon below, and then buy it now to save about 70% off the original price!

Just act fast, because this sale ends on 9/30/15. Find WBC: Colossians-Philemon and other volumes on sale here:

Browse at Logos

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Browse at WORDsearch


How to Season Your Speech with Salt – From WBC: Colossians-Philemon by Peter T. O’Brien

[Colossians 4:6 “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (NIV)]

“Seasoned with salt,” which is the literal rendering of the Greek, is…

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Theology Award Winners, 2014-2015. Plus an Invitation to Instructors

ZA Blog on 2 weeks ago. Tagged under ,.


Did you know Zondervan Academic partners with colleges, universities, and seminaries to recognize students for outstanding achievement in the study of theology?

To find out how your school can participate in the Zondervan Theology Award program, please contact Joshua Kessler (joshua.kessler@harpercollins.com).

And please join us in congratulating the 2014-2015 winners.

Theology Award Winners, 2014-2015

Baptist Bible Seminary – Matthew Snyder Belmont University – Julia Crone Bethel Seminary – Marina Hannus Brite Divinity School – Nathan Kennedy Calvary Chapel Bible College – Linsi Clain Calvary Theological Seminary – Salvatore M. LaFaso Campbell University – Shawn Austin Holland Carson-Newman University – Alex Carver Central Baptist College – William Wright Central Baptist Theological Seminary – Scott Gamble Colorado Christian University – Alex Siemers Concordia Lutheran Theological Seminary – James Preus Concordia University, Wisconsin – Nicholas Gonzalez Concordia University, Ann Arbor – Daniel Wojtowicz…

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