For to Us a Child Is Born: The Meaning of Isaiah 9:6

ZA Blog on 3 weeks ago. Tagged under ,.

Isaiah

Isaiah 9:6 is a prophecy about a future child who would bear the government on his shoulders and be called by titles that could only rightfully be attributed to God:

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

This is one of the most well-known Old Testament prophecies about Jesus. But what does it mean?

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our

Read more

Who Was Isaiah?

ZA Blog on 1 month ago. Tagged under ,.

Isaiah

Isaiah was a Jewish prophet who lived during the eighth century BC. The Book of Isaiah claims to be written by him, and scholars believe he at least wrote part of it.

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our Privacy Policy or email us at yourprivacy@harpercollins.com. When did Isaiah live?

The first verse of Isaiah gives us a little more context about him.

“The vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem that Isaiah son of Amoz saw during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah.”…

Read more

Who Wrote the Book of Isaiah?

ZA Blog on 1 month ago. Tagged under .

Isaiah

Scholars generally accept that the Book of Isaiah was at least partially written by the prophet Isaiah, during the eighth century BC. However, there’s also evidence that other authors made additions.

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our Privacy Policy or email us at yourprivacy@harpercollins.com. Evidence of other authors

There are numerous challenges in the Book of Isaiah that lead scholars to speculate about which parts were written by Isaiah himself, and what else was added and by whom. Most scholars agree that the prophet Isaiah likely only wrote…

Read more

Comfort, Comfort My People: The Meaning of Isaiah 40:1

ZA Blog on 1 month ago. Tagged under ,.

Isaiah

After 39 chapters of narrative, the Book of Isaiah makes a dramatic shift: it becomes a book of poetry. But it makes another, perhaps more radical change: it skips ahead about 150 years into the future.

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our Privacy Policy or email us at yourprivacy@harpercollins.com.

Up until this point, Isaiah has spoken about a future exile when the northern kingdom of Israel will be conquered and its people will live in captivity. But from chapter 40–55, Isaiah is speaking to those who are currently…

Read more

David and Goliath: 6 Lessons (1 Samuel 17 Commentary)

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

Bernini's David

9780310490937“The book of Samuel is one of the great literary works in human history,” writes Paul Evans in 1-2 Samuel (Story of God Bible Commentary). “Its masterfully told stories have captured the imagination of readers for millennia” (19). Chief among them is the story of David and Goliath, the quintessential underdog story.

But what does the story mean? What lessons can we draw from it to shape our lives and inform our relationship with the Lord?

Here’s a clue from Evans: “David’s faith-filled theological perspective allowed him a different vantage point on the grave situation in the valley of Elah” (194). Evans’ commentary offers a clear and compelling exposition of David’s theological perspective. Read the story from 1 Samuel 17, then consider the lessons below, and see what…

Read more

How Does Genesis 1–11 Speak Truly? Six Insights

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

Reading Genesis Well

9780310598572What does it mean to say Genesis 1-11 speaks truly? Is Genesis a historically accurate, scientific narrative? What does it mean to be a good reader of Genesis 1-11?

Reading Genesis Well answers these questions and more. In this book Old Testament scholar C. John Collins  develops a rigorous approach to interpreting the parts of the Bible that figure in contemporary discussions of science and faith. Collins’ approach appropriates literary and linguistic insights from C. S. Lewis, and adds perspectives from modern linguistics (including lexical semantics, discourse analysis, and sociolinguistics).

Collins’ work will help you better navigate conversations about Genesis, science, and biblical faith. This book will help you evaluate different views of Genesis and become more deeply informed about how history, poetry, science and truth in Genesis…

Read more

5 Tips for Reading Apocalyptic Literature in the Bible

ZA Blog on 2 months ago. Tagged under ,.

The mark of the beast

Apocalyptic literature is a challenging genre. In the Bible, we find this genre in the Book of Revelation and in the second half of Daniel.

There’s also a lot of apocalyptic literature outside the Bible. It was a very popular genre during the Second Temple period (from 530 BC to 70 AD), and so we have a lot of examples of the purpose, form, and style of apocalyptic literature to inform our understanding of how it functions in Scripture.

Since it’s such a different style of writing than the gospels, epistles, or historical and theological writings we find elsewhere in the Bible, it’s important that we approach apocalyptic literature with a different perspective.

Here are 5 tips for reading apocalyptic books like Daniel and Revelation.

1. Pay attention to the symbolism

One thing to remember about…

Read more

Psalm 121 Commentary: Where Does Our Help Come From?

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

9780310206705When your world turns dark and your journey turns rugged, where do you turn for help? What is your source for the confidence you need to face the headwinds of life?

Psalm 121 encourages us in such times. It reminds us where our help comes from and infuses us with confidence: “My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” W. Dennis Tucker Jr. unpacks the true depths of this message by offering sound exegesis and application of the psalm in the new commentary Psalms, Volume 2 (NIV Application Commentary), co-authored by Tucker (who covers Psalms 107-150) and Jamie A. Grant (Psalms 73-106).

This Psalms commentary from the NIV Application Commentary Series will help you learn how…

Read more

Who Was Nebuchadnezzar?

ZA Blog on 3 months ago. Tagged under .

Nebuchadnezzar

Nebuchadnezzar was a powerful king of Babylon who reigned from about 605 BC until around 562 BC.

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our Privacy Policy or email us at yourprivacy@harpercollins.com. What is King Nebuchadnezzar known for?

Nebuchadnezzar’s kingdom stretched across the ancient Near East. It was during his reign that the Babylonians sacked the city of Jerusalem and destroyed the temple. Because of Nebuchadnezzar, the Israelites lost their land, and ended up in exile.

This marked the beginning of what is called the diaspora (dispersion), when the…

Read more

What Does “Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin” Mean?

ZA Blog on 3 months ago. Tagged under .

Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin

Mene, mene, tekel, parsin, is an Aramaic phrase found in chapter five of the Book of Daniel, the story of Belshazzar and the handwriting on the wall. (This is where we get the colloquial phrase “writing on the wall”.)

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. If you have any questions, please review our Privacy Policy or email us at yourprivacy@harpercollins.com. Daniel 5: The writing on the wall

Here’s the passage where we encounter this peculiar phrase:

This is the inscription that was written:

mene, mene, tekel, parsin

“Here is what these words mean:

Mene:…

Read more

Genesis 1: In the Beginning

ZA Blog on 3 months ago. Tagged under ,,,,.

genesis

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”

The Bible begins with these famous words in Genesis 1, laying the foundation for the rest of the Bible. Genesis 1:1–2:4a is the first of two creation accounts in Genesis, and it focuses on God’s creation of the cosmos.

The Bible’s creation account is the source of a lot of debate. Some modern readers strip away the cultural and theological significance of Genesis, and instead mine it for scientific details about how God created the heavens and the earth. Others suggest it is simply one of many ancient accounts of creation—a myth.

To help us understand this ancient Scripture, we’re drawing from the expertise of Tremper Longman III, a renowned Old Testament scholar. In his online course on the book of Genesis, Longman reveals the cultural and theological implications…

Read more

Sodom and Gomorrah: A Story about Sin and Judgment

ZA Blog on 3 months ago. Tagged under ,,,.

genesis

Sodom and Gomorrah are two of the Old Testament’s most infamously sinful cities. Genesis 19 tells the story of how God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their wickedness, but spared Lot and his family (mostly).

The New Testament uses these cities as examples of behavior that God’s people need to avoid. But what exactly was the nature of Sodom’s sin? Why did God single them out? And why was Lot spared?

In his online course on the book of Genesis, Old Testament scholar Tremper Longman III answers these questions and more, starting where the story actually begins in Genesis 18, when Abraham finds himself hosting three unknown visitors.

The following post is based on his online course.

By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville,…

Read more