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5:31 AM
Q: conflicting Joseph tags

Monica CellioThis question is about the Joseph who is the husband of Mary. This question is about the Joseph who was the son of Jacob. Both questions are tagged joseph. How can we disambiguate? Each use has only one question; is the tag (in either case) useful?

Q: Should two-part books have two tags or one?

Monica Cellio1-samuel, 2-samuel, 1-kings, 2-kings, etc -- should tagging be per book like that, or per "themeatic book" (samuel, kings, etc)?

10 hours later…
3:48 PM
Dear @LanceRoberts,
A: Was Deborah considered a sub-optimal leader?

Lance RobertsIsaiah 3:12a states (ESV): My people — infants are their oppressors, and women rule over them. This is showing one of the signs of affliction upon Israel for their disobedience. We see in Judges where at this time the men were quite passive. In Judges 4:8 we see after Deborah asked Barak ...

You have a great answer here, but I want to discuss your conclusion with you:
"The Bible is very consistent in that God has given the responsibility of leadership to men, in both the old and new testament. This is a very applicable point today, since we see this level of passiveness in the modern industrialized world, partly spurred by the advance of the heresy of feminism."
4:05 PM
@Caleb, @JonEricson are either of you around?
5:02 PM
@Ami I'm here if that's any help :-)
Hi @JackDouglas, thanks for stopping in.
Are you the one who moderated the comments to the "Was Deborah considered..." question?
Yes - I was a little unsure what to do but took advice from mods on other sites in the modorator chat room
I see.
The other moderators recommended the edits which you made?
(Personally, I appreciate those edits and I think they are the right move.)
They did. I was thinking to leave the comments and try and chat with you and Lance in here first.
Do you have an issue with Lances answer? At the end of the day comments are not that important but the content of answers very much is...
I'm also pretty concerned about the last part of Lance's answer which is what I wanted to discuss with you.
His answer is great, and deserves its upvotes but I think the last part about feminism is very damaging to this site
5:09 PM
An aside: your contributions to this site are great and very valuable, thank you
Let me reread what Lance wrote, brb
Two main issues: 1 - the question of feminism...what feminism is, what it means, why people are feminist, what the Bible says about feminism, etc. are way beyond the scope of that question and possibly the site as a whole since this begins to bleed into doctrine.
2 - I think it's really dangerous to throw around the label "heresy" on this site...under any circumstances and in any context.
This site can be a wonderful amalgam of different view points and perspectives. Disagreements need to be cast in the language of rigorous textual analysis. Name calling and broad generalizations are the most sure way to undermine that project.
(Thank you for your compliment, btw.)
Very interesting questions. On (1), we have carefully defined on-topic exegesis questions to exclude questions that begin with something other than Bible text. AFAIK there has been no discussion about the content of answers.
Key issue for me: do you think Lance is answering the question - specifically is the part on feminism part of the answer or is it a tangent?
Definitely tangent.
Anyway, I have the reputation to edit the question myself, but I want that decision to come from the moderators of this site and ideally from Lance himself.
"I've sometimes heard that Deborah was allowed to be a leader of Israel only because no man stepped up to the responsibility."
I think perhaps the issue of feminism was present in the mind of the OP
To be precise, the issue of male headship - feminism means a large number of different things to different people
5:25 PM
that's what I was going to say
The word feminism is part of the problem here.
Feminism is a buzz word that can mean everything or nothing, which is why it's tangent in the answer.
"the heresy of equal roles promoted by some flavours of feminism" is possible a phrase that communicates better what Lance is trying to say - which brings us on to (2) :-)
"heresy" is certainly an emotionally charged and historically loaded word. Is that part of the issue for you?
above all, it reeks of doctrine
and potentially offensive to some
On the first issue, don't "Disagreements [...] cast in the language of rigorous textual analysis" also have their basis in doctrine?
Sure, but as long as we stick to text, Christians and Jews and atheists can have common ground which is why this site works so well
The biblical text is a medium which makes inter-cultural discussion fruitful
Talk about gender roles needs to happen through the reading/interpretation of verses that say something meaningful about gender roles. I don't think the verses in the book of Judges about Deborah and Barak are in conversation with the question of gender roles in our modern day religious communities.
5:42 PM
Sorry, battery ran out! Just catching up
no problem.
I was going to ask whether you are Christian, Jew or Atheist (or other)? If you don't mind saying that is
I think I am right in saying there are several who'd call themselves Jewish active on the site, and several who'd call themselves Christian. It would be a surprise to me if there was an atheist who cared that much about what any Biblical Text says, but I hope I'm wrong on that...
There are many academic Bible scholars who are atheist. Much of my Bible reading education has come from atheist Bible scholars.
5:50 PM
@Ami I think Lance is taking the view that "for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman." is more than just matter-of-fact, rather a deliberate reference to gender roles
@Ami Hey, shows what I know :-)
I think there is an interesting question underlying this: "should we tolerate intolerance" on the site
Yes. "The Lord will sell Sisera..." It is a deliberate reference to gender roles and Lance makes that clear in the first part of his answer which I totally agree with: "In Judges 4:8 we see...a real low point in Hebrew masculinity:"
Ah, I'm missing the issue then :-) is about how it applies to "modern day religious communities"?
Judges 4:8 is aware of the cultural reality of the time. Judges 4:8 assumes that men are usually leaders and woman usually are not leaders. Judges 4:8 does not say anything about whether or not woman should/can be leaders today...that's a very different question.
Ok, but is the opposing view (namely that male headship was approved by God and still is) a valid one or one we don't want expressed on the site?
definitely valid and definitely should be discussed on this site
but that discussion has to happen through verses which deal with that question.
5:59 PM
Is it a valid alternative view that these verses do?
(deal with that question that is)
okay...I have to backtrack a little. Earlier I said "definitely should be discussed on this site." I want to take that back. The question of modern day gender roles is just like this question. The issue of gender roles is about modern day religious practice not Biblical text and therefore cannot be disentangled from doctrine.
but the view that male headship was approved by God is definitely a valid position
Perhaps this question would work: Does Isaiah 3:12 ("My people — infants are their oppressors, and women rule over them") speak to normative religious practice or the cultural realities of the time?
I understand - and this brings into focus the distinction of whether doctrine is 'allowed' on the site, particularly in answers. If I understand correctly, we have particular rules about questions not being allowed to begin with doctrine (note that is not the same as saying they are not allowed to contain or refer to doctrine), and no 'doctrine' rule at all about answers.
@Ami I think that is on-topic and an interesting (if hard to answer well) question - are you going to ask it?
I agree its an interesting question, and I will definitely think about it, but I think its a little too narrow and difficult to answer as is. If I can come up with a more broad version of the question, I will ask it.
Anyway, if we can go back to an early point, I think the term "heresy" and all its synonyms should be treated as name calling and offensive and completely disallowed on this site. I definitely like the idea of not tolerating intolerance.
6:17 PM
I agree with that last statement. Labeling people as heretics doesn't help discussion. Saying that a certain viewpoint falls out of a certain stream of orthodoxy is another thing, such as saying that a certain view falls in line with a particular non-Christian religion.
Then I will have to ban you both for intolerance :-) seriously - that is too big for me to decide on, the best thing would probably be to ask one or more questions on meta about what we should allow in answers.
@digitaloday And hello :-)
@JackDouglas, okay. Should I post a meta question or would you like to?
@digitaloday, welcome.
@Ami If you are willing to do so that would be great - I'm sure you will anyway but it's best to focus on the issue rather than on Lance if at all possible
I don't mind taking care of it, hopefully I'll get around to it in an hour or so.
@Ami Thanks that's great :-) I will wait a while before contributing any thoughts I have to give others a chance.
@digitaloday Thanks for contributing here. Are you active on the site?
6:27 PM
Not yet
I just recently found it, I haven't really asked any questions on it yet
I studied Hebrew and Greek in a pre-seminary program for a few years, also a semester of Aramaic.
I am not in any form of professional ministry so it's a struggle to keep sharp, but I still grab the original text and try to jump in on an almost weekly basis
@digitaloday We get questions on the source languages and it would be great to have you on board with that experience.
My Greek is very basic indeed - I am attempting to self-teach at the same time as teaching it to my children :-)
I have a slightly different perspective on many issues, though - but that shouldn't affect how I exegete passages. I do my best to allow no eisegesis to creep in ;)
that is very cool. The children will benefit from being exposed to another language at a young age
I'm curious :-)
what text/resource are you using for self-teaching?
I'm not 100% sure where I fall in the Christian spectrum. I am influenced both by Eastern and Western thought - very interested in Eastern Orthodoxy and Eastern Roman Catholicism. And yet I profoundly agree with many of the steps taken in the Protestant Reformation, so I end up identifying with moderate Lutherans very often, except in the realm of ecclesiology, where I tend to end up in the Anabaptist camp lol
I was going to ask what your perspective is? For self teaching I using the materials we have for teaching the children (flash cards and a starter on the alphabet and the most basic grammar) apart from that we are practising reading/learning and writing specific verses from the NT.
6:36 PM
I tend to come back to Lutheranism on core issues such as soteriology (saved by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ, not by works - monergistic single predestination), the Sacraments (mysteries, more than symbols but not transubstantiative nor do they work 'ex opere operato' apart from faith), the doctrine of the Trinity, etc.
What's your main interest in Eastern Orthodoxy/Catholicism - theological or something else?
I recommend this: amazon.com/Learn-Testament-Greek-John-Dobson/dp/0801031060 for your situation. Or if you want to get into quicker and slightly more technically (but not as technical as in an academic setting), try this: amazon.com/Learn-Read-New-Testament-Greek/dp/0805444939
Thanks! Do you know this one:
I've worked through the first few chapters
my primary interest in Eastern Orthodoxy and Eastern Catholicism is in their philosophical Eastern worldview that rejects Western systematic thought, which has brought us much of systematic theology. While I do think there must be some concrete absolutes, Eastern thought is more comfortable with paradoxes (antinomies, to be exact), mystery, and an honest approach to the place of history's authority in the Church
I am not familiar with that one, please tell me more about it.
So, you understand James, John, 1,2,3 John, Revelation and much of the OT better than most people then ;-)
The Greek book says it is different because it gets you looking at and reading actual NT Greek from the first page. So there is less focus on traditional grammar based books IIRC. TBH I have nothing to compare it to so I have no idea how other books approach it.
6:51 PM
The Western Christian history of thought is filled with thinkers in philosophy and ethics. The notion of hermeneutics itself comes from Greek philosophical rhetoric. Eastern thought has been concerned with asceticism and mysticism. I think we need both, we cannot exclude one side or the other to get a complete worldview.
Orthodox Christian theology is a series of antinomies (they are not truly paradoxes, as they are often called): Jesus is fully man and yet fully divine. The Lord's Supper is Jesus' body and blood and yet it is clearly bread and wine. God is completely sovereign and yet man has free will.
The first book I recommended is similar in that it gets you going immediately. The second is a traditional grammar but not as difficult to follow as many I've encountered in academia.
Any attempt to resolve the antinomies results in extremism at best and 'heresy' at worst.
I will probably get them both - we have a 'budget' for this sort of thing :-) I'll let you know how I get on with them but I might be a few months...
There's that word again...
Sorry to interrupt...@JackDouglas, can I get your feedback on what I wrote for the meta question?
One of the reasons I like this site is I often get insight int a text even in answers I completely disagree with - because the discussion throws up interesting observations on the text
@Ami I'll just go and take a look...
Then it will be up in a few minutes
I just saw the comment earlier about understanding various books. And I would say I feel that I do understand these books fairly well, although not everything is entirely understandable to us. Somewhat because we don't really understand how the original hearers took it, we've lost some of their context. And also partly because not all of it is understandable ;)
6:59 PM
@Ami sorry did I misunderstand?
I tend to agree with Eastern Christian views on eschatology. This is NOT amillenialism as has often been incorrectly ascribed to them, however.
Do you want to post it in here first
@JackDouglas, I was going to post the text of the question in chat to get your feedback, but instead I'll just post it on meta and get your feedback then
Ok :-)
@digitaloday some of it strikes me as speaking to the heart rather than the mind (in today's lingo)
Q: Gender roles on this site

AmichaiThis meta question is in response to this recent answer. Firstly, I agree with Lance's answer which is good and deserves the upvotes it got. However, at the end, Lance applies his analysis to a modern day hot-topic issue: "feminism": The Bible is very consistent in that God has given the resp...

7:07 PM
in some ways yes, but Eastern Christians would say the nous and dianoia
nous = "eye of the soul," translated as intellectus in Latin (intellect) but this corresponds more to our spiritual / heart understanding in the West. dianoia = "reason," translated as ratio in Latin (rational, reason) and corresponds to our logical minds in the West. The Eastern spiritual text (more of a compilation) is the Philokalia, and it is filled with ascetic and mystical references to this
But you must wade through it carefully, as they were often monastic and definitely viewed faith and works as two sides of the same coin (synergistic soteriology, which is held by most Eastern Christians to this day, especially Eastern Orthodox).
@Ami That's good - one thing we need to do is ask people to address at most 1 of your 4 points in an individual answer so votes can be deciphered. Alternatively you could repose as multiple questions - what do you think is better?
@digitaloday Something you just said just leaped out and slapped me in the face...
I don't understand all the terms you use - what is soteriology?
Aha Google helps
Is there any concept of faith preceding works?
I'm sorry. Soteriology is the field of theology concerned with studying salvation (σωτωρ = Savior)
@JackDouglas, I don't know...I phrased the question in the hopes of getting some "first approximation" of an answer. I figured that as people weighted in on the matter, more specific formulations could be spawned.
misspelled that σωτηρ
In Eastern thought, faith and works are an antinomy in salvation; they are two sides of the same coin. But they also don't view salvation as the teleological focus of Christian faith. Theosis (deification) is the main goal in their worldview.
I would disagree with the first view. I believe that faith precedes good works, and faith itself (as well as repentance) is a gift from God that we cannot earn.
salvation is just one of the benefits in their belief system, which I think may be a good thing to some extents
@Ami Good idea - how about adding something to that effect to the question, maybe even inviting further meta questions if folk feel they are necessary?
7:22 PM
Good idea.
The title of this stack exchange is somewhat misleading in my opinion
@digitaloday That is very reformed :-) My big fear for the reformed wing at least here in the UK is that there seems to be a presumption of saving faith in any who confess, absent the evidence of good works. Not usually an explicit presumption mind, just in practice.
@digitaloday Check out some of the 'starred' discussions on the right or the meta questions :-)
But I am not Reformed, I assure you. I agree with Reformed that salvation is a monergistic work of God. However, I only believes he predestines people to heaven - I believe no one is predestined to hell (single predestination). Once someone comes to faith in Christ, I believe they can fall away from faith. This is a Lutheran view, not a Reformed view.
Q: What should our title be?

Jon EricsonOur current title, "Biblical Hermeneutics", has a lot going for it: Covers many of the questions we ask if you take hermeneutics to mean "applied hermeneutics". Quietly excludes people who don't have some inkling what hermeneutics might consist of and includes people who know all about this som...

Do vote or contribute if you are inclined to do so :-)
@digitaloday You've been reading Hebrews :-)
What do you make of Romans 9 btw?
that is a valid concern @JackDouglas. That's what Spener and the Pietists reacted against back in the 17th century.
But as I always say, "piety good; Pietism bad."
7:32 PM
That's catchy, I like it :)
I need to go get some children to bed... Thanks for popping in @digitaloday, I've found this very interesting. I hope you decide to contribute to the site long-term... @Ami thanks for the meta Q and the update - I'll be watching the outcome with interest. Also thanks again for talking all this through with me in here :-)
thank you, have a good night.
thanks, g'nite
7:47 PM
Q: Gender roles on this site

AmichaiThis meta question is in response to this recent answer. Firstly, I agree with Lance's answer which is good and deserves the upvotes it got. However, at the end, Lance applies his analysis to a modern day hot-topic issue: "feminism": The Bible is very consistent in that God has given the resp...


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