The Jewish Studies Blog

There are tools that are needed to mine the depths of the biblical texts. There are also many perspectives that enrich our study, like the perspective of first century Judaism. This site is one of those rare resources that provides both tools and perspective for the serious student of Scripture.

– Dr. Allen Mawhinney, A Retired Academic Dean, Reformed Theological Seminary

Jesus In The Talmud (peter Schafer, Princeton University)

Scattered throughout the Talmud, the founding document of rabbinic Judaism in late antiquity, can be found quite a few references to Jesus–and they’re not flattering. In this lucid, richly detailed, and accessible…

Hebrew Names – Should We Translate It? (john 1:6-9)

Since this commentary is concentrating only on relevant Jewish contextual background issues, we are purposefully avoiding all other insightful comments that most other commentaries address. Suffice it to say that many of the names, including John, come to the New Testament from Greek manuscripts of the Gospel. Sometimes the Greek manuscripts do actually refer to Greek names such as Timothy (Timotheus, which means honored by God) or Andrei (Andreas, which simply means man or manly). But other times, names like Mathew were in fact common Jewish, Hebrew names. These names were Hellenized and Latinized before arriving in our English Bibles. As an example, Mathew (Matthaios/Matthaeus) was Mattiyahu (which in Hebrew means gift of God).

Themes Of Darkness And Light: Is There Connection With Qumran...

4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

To the author of the Gospel, the Word of God was both distinct from God and yet at the same time was in some way truly God. This Word of God (Logos/Memra) played an exclusive rule in the creation of the world, as we read in the verses above. Moreover, according to John, the life force that makes any of God’s creation breathe, move, and exist was intricately connected with and depended upon that very Word of God. In this section, the author of the Gospel compares this Word with light shining in the darkness, stating resolutely that the power of darkness was not successful in overcoming it.

Logos Theology In Pre-christian Judaism (john 1:1-3)

It is absolutely true that this Gospel’s original author, in his midrashic[1] prologue to the rest of the book, states that there is an entity referred to as “God,” as well as an entity referred to as the “Word of God.” Both God and his Word, in the Evangelist’s mind are divine and existed eternally. Whether one’s theology allows for such interpretation or not, is in some way irrelevant. This is after all theology of the Gospel of John and this is how the author sees God. Take it or leave it.

The Story Of Interpretation: From The First Century To The Twenty...

The book of Jeremiah was treated with various degrees of attention as various concerns and circumstances were brought to its reading, reflecting various outlooks and presuppositions. One conclusion that I derived from my studies is that biblical research has by no means arrived at its final stage. More commentaries ought to be written, more contemporary issues explored in the light of the book’s message; more data needs to be assessed by the scholarly and pastoral communities of the world. A great danger exists, however, in that in this holy enterprise the academia will be divorced from the church, university from seminary, theoretical from practical. It is important that those two scholarly communities with different emphases would seek the merger for the benefit of God’s Kingdom.