Search:
test

Interview with Thomas R. Schreiner

I recently talked with Thomas R. Schreiner, the James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation and Associate Dean at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, about biblical content and its importance today in contemporary culture and the church. Below is our interview. JM: Tom, you’ve spent your life committed to studying and teaching the Bible. Isn’t a rather archaic thing to be doing in our contemporary world? TS: It is archaic in one sense, but sometimes the old truths are the best truths because they are the true truths. I could answer this in a number of ways, but here I want to say that I see no evidence that contemporary people, who have abandoned the scripture, live happier or more fulfilled lives. Instead many marriages are dissolving, many children grow up in homes plagued by fighting, and many wander from thing to thing in utter boredom. If they...

Continue Reading

April 5, 2017: An Amazing Claim!

Today’s Bible Reading: Joshua 10-12, Psalm 76, Mark 2:1-12, 1 Corinthians 4 Mark 2:1-12: The famous story has a point that is not always well elucidated. At the core of this interaction, Jesus is making an astonishing claim. When he says, “Your sins are forgiven,” Jesus is making an implicit claim to be God. The scribes understand this is what Jesus is saying, by remarking “Who can forgive sins but God alone?” The logic of this connection is quite often lost on people today. Think of it like this. If someone hits you, then you can offer them forgiveness. But if someone hits you, and a bystander looks at the person who hits you and says, “I forgive you,” then that would strike you as at the very least strange. What has that person done to the bystander that they can offer them forgiveness? The reason why Jesus’ claim is so outrageous is he is saying...

Continue Reading

April 4, 2017: Focus and Compassion

Today’s Bible Reading: Joshua 8-9, Psalm 75, Mark 1:35-45, 1 Corinthians 3 Mark 1:35-45: Jesus sets a model for us to follow. He rose early in the morning while it was still dark, found a place to be quiet, and prayed (1:35). Think for a moment, beloved. If the Son of All Glory, God Incarnate, Jesus the Christ, need pray—and pray with sufficient passion and conviction to rise early in the morning—then who among us dare begin any new venture, make any significant decision, attempt any major new initiative, without committing the time to pray? It shows the humility of the Christ, his wisdom and his utter dependence that he so prays. What an example for us to follow! Take no extra time to worry about the day ahead; commit it to the Lord in prayer, cast your burdens there. Having so prayed, Jesus now decides with clarity about his future direction. He has come to...

Continue Reading

April 3, 2017: The Fame of the Name

Today’s Bible Reading: Joshua 6-7, Psalm 74, Mark 1:21-34, 1 Corinthians 2 Mark 1:21-34: Jesus’ ministry is marked by a particular distinctive, “authority.” This authority is expressed in his not teaching like “the scribes” (1:22). Whereas the scribes cited human authorities and utilized human tradition in support of their opinions, and generally footnoted their assertions with the typical perambulations necessary for most acceptable religious discourse, Jesus preached differently. His message came with authority. This authority was unique to him. Only Jesus, the God-Man, could teach as a man but also with the authority of God. None other, however great the preacher, can so teach as this Man taught, for the Man who taught was not merely a man. That said, the “authority” of Jesus’ teaching is to a lesser degree a model for true preachers today. Those who are called to preach are called to preach God’s Word, to determine that message from the Bible...

Continue Reading

April 2, 2017: Follow Christ

Today’s Bible Reading: Joshua 3-5, Psalm 73, Mark 1:9-20, 1 Corinthians 1:18-31 Mark 1:9-20: Jesus’ baptism is accompanied with an extraordinary voice from heaven along with the Spirit descending upon him: “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased” (1:9-11). In Christ, through faith in him, we are beloved and “accepted in the beloved” too (Ephesians 1:6, KJV). It is amazing to hear the word of God given to attest to the identity of Christ. All true Christians have the assurance available to them that they are, in Christ, also “accepted” in Christ the “beloved.” Dwell in this thought today. You are not alienated; you are accepted. You are not hated, diminished, or dismissed; you are loved. After the baptism, after the spiritual “high,” comes the temptation (1:12-13). Jesus is fulfilling all that is necessary so that in life, as in death, he might be the full and complete perfect “Son” that...

Continue Reading

April 1, 2017: Mightier

Today’s Bible Reading: Joshua 1-2, Psalm 72, Mark 1:1-8, 1 Corinthians 1:1-17 Mark 1:1-8: Mark’s Gospel begins with a bang, not a whimper, and carries on at a fast pace through all of its pages. This gospel that is announced comes immediately with power and great energy. We can almost feel the passion of the apostle Peter preaching as we read. Do we have that sense of urgency? Does the “beginning” of the gospel get us up each morning with a mission and a zeal to go about preaching that gospel to others—and living it ourselves? The quotation is from Malachi as well as Isaiah. This is not because Mark does not know what he is doing. We can be sure he knew the Scriptures better than most of us. No, he follows the custom of either quoting the more famous prophet as the citation for both, or as the interpretation of the more obscure—as sometimes today...

Continue Reading

March 26-31, 2017

In keeping with the Bible reading plan we are using, the last days of each month are designated as “free days.” March 26-31 then are intended to allow you to catch up on reading you may have missed or to study passages more in depth that intrigued you during the first 25 days of the month. With this in mind, God Centered Bible will not have a devotional for March 26-31, but will pick back up on April 1, 2017. We welcome your comments also during these days with insights you’ve found during the first 25 days. To receive God Centered Bible devotionals directly in your inbox, sign up here....

Continue Reading

March 25, 2017: The Great Commission

Today’s Bible Reading: Deuteronomy 33-34, Psalm 71, Matthew 28:11-20, Romans 16 Matthew 28:11-20: The famous Great Commission is preceded by an explanation for one of the common attempts to explain away the resurrection. “The guards fell asleep.” The guards were paid to tell this story. What kind of blindness—or fear—is it that will bribe someone to hide the truth of a Savior King come to rescue you? Such sinners are we, and so in need of a savior. The heart of the human problem is the problem of the human heart. When the disciples see Jesus, they worship him—but some doubted (28:17). Even in the midst of worship, doubt can creep in among some. Jesus knows our frailty, and while we doubt, he still speaks, and hearing ears can receive his authoritative commission. If someone doubts at seeing Jesus, their doubts are often removed when they hear Jesus speak his word. The preaching of the...

Continue Reading

March 24, 2017: Fear and Great Joy

Today’s Bible Reading: Deuteronomy 32, Psalm 70, Matthew 28:1-10, Romans 15:14-33 Matthew 28:1-10: Miracle of miracles, the resurrection. Many people have protested that we cannot possibly believe that Jesus came back from the dead. Sophisticated apologetics have been put together that make the case that however many eyewitnesses there are for Christ’s resurrection, such eyewitness account is insufficient—in the same way that ten or a thousand eyewitnesses that said that a man jumped off a building but did not fall and floated up again would strain credulity. Surely there must be some other rational explanation? Surely, they say, the rational alternative is that Jesus did not die. Or the disciples took the body. Or the soldiers did. Or the women were mistaken. But if we argue that no miracle can be proven, however much proof there is for it, we are really making a philosophical (not evidential) case against the resurrection. We are saying that this...

Continue Reading

March 23, 2017: Dead and Buried

Today’s Bible Reading: Deuteronomy 29-31, Psalm 69:19-36, Matthew 27:57-66, Romans 15:1-13 Matthew 27:57-66: Here we see first how a rich man expresses his commitment to Christ. If anyone thinks that you cannot be rich and follow Jesus, here is Joseph of Arimathea, a “rich man” (27:57), and “also a disciple of Jesus.” He uses his influence to gain an audience with the governor Pilate. He asks for the body of Jesus. He then expresses his devotion by giving Jesus a proper burial according to the customs of that time and place. The two Marys are there, sitting opposite the tomb. There are witnesses, and Jesus is dead and buried. In order to emphasize how extraordinary this resurrection of Jesus to come is, how miraculous and supernatural, the Pharisees do everything they can to prevent it. They arrange for a guard of soldiers to be stationed outside of the tomb. Everything is secure. He is dead. He is...

Continue Reading