Is the Resurrection Necessary?

cemetary

According to the New Testament, it’s the resurrection or nothing. There is no other way to have any existence after death. This means, among other things, that there is no conscious soul able to survive without a body. Every Christian who takes a stance on the mind-body issue is going to have to live with […]

Purging the Kingdom: Jesus’ Interpretation of the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares in Matthew 13

Harvest

By James D. Gallé (Final Revisions 10 March 2014) Prior to entering our discussion about the parable of the wheat and the tares, I believe a word needs to be said regarding the phrase that occurs toward the end of Jesus’ explanation of the parable to his disciples:”In that place there will be weeping and […]

coaching for the mission in Jewish Galilee | the harvest is plentiful

Harvest

The prophet Isaiah had predicted that the northern territories, once the possession of the tribes of Zebulun and Naphtali, would have a special place in God’s messianic plan. This land of Galilee, so surrounded by Gentiles and Samaritans that it was called “Galilee of the nations” would be the first to see the Messiah.1 In their […]

Did Paul Have an Out of Body Experience?

An out of body experience?

Did Paul talk about leaving his body and going to the third heaven? Although I’m familiar with the view that the Apostle Paul is relating an “out-of-body experience” at the outset of 2 Corinthians 12, I’m pretty sure that he is not. That’s partly because I don’t think that Scripture teaches that we are immaterial […]

Can these bones live? The resurrection of the body

Luca Signorelli - The Resurrection of the Flesh, c. 1500

Is it really clear that the first Christians believed in the empty tomb of Jesus and in the resurrection of our bodies, leaving all the graves empty? When we view history through Christian eyes, the resurrection of Jesus is the turning point. Without it, St Paul assured his readers, we are wasting our time with […]

better than survival

martha and lazarus

Recently, my wife and I joined a North American mission leader’s conference, together with some 1200 of our colleagues. On the closing session of the conference, they featured a young African-American poet, Micah Bournes. I hope that what he shared is going to be on his new album, because I would love to hear it […]

looking at 1 Thessalonians 5:10

1 Thessalonians 5 10

The Holy spirit has given us a masterpiece of precision in the Bible. Its words are crafted with such care that readers usually stumble upon the correct meaning of texts without much preparation and study. On the other hand, the human brain is a complex organ, and capable of creative interpretation. Sometimes we get rather […]

Matthew 10:28 and dualism | Is the soul Immortal ?

is the soul immortal

Is the soul immortal? Did Jesus say that when people kill our bodies, our souls go marching on? Matthew 10:28 is a problem for the traditional doctrine of hell. It’s one of the verses of Scripture that conditionalists won’t let traditionalists forget, and for good reason. It affirms in the clearest language possible that the […]

Judas’ eternal sin | Christian Beliefs of hell

Judas’ eternal sin | Christian Beliefs of hell

The three major views on final punishment of the wicked can be outlined like this: 1. traditionalism: God will justly punish unbelievers with an unending process of perpetual torment. 2. universalism: God will justly punish unbelievers for their personal sins, and eventually restore them to his favour. 3. conditionalism: God will justly punish unbelievers for […]

debugging Luke 23:43 | How Can We Get to Heaven ?

analysis4_thumb.jpg

Synopsis:  The traditional translation of Luke 23:43 is inconsistent with the rest of Scripture, and poses theological, biblical, historical, and grammatico-syntactical problems. It gives the wrong answer to the questions “how can we get to heaven?” and “where does the spirit go after death?” and “what happens after we die?” The verse should be debugged: […]