Welcome message

Dear friends,

Welcome to my blog. I am honored to have you visit. I hope you'll find my articles a blessing. I welcome your input and especially comments and questions.

I write as a Christian from Jerusalem, Israel about Biblical subjects.

I am particularly interested in the subjects of children, families, women's issues, corporal punishment, science and nature as these subjects relate to the Holy Scriptures.

For more information, see my website: www.biblechild.com

With every good wish - Samuel Martin

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Behind every Church Father is a Mother

Behind every Church Father is a Mother

In response to a comment left by Crystal on my blog, http://samuelmartin.blogspot.com/2011/11/if-king-james-version-was-good-enough.html, Crystal mentioned the following:

"My 4th child was born peacefully, painlessly, and calmly at home- blowing the pain-filled woman's curse out the window. "

First of all, do yourself a favor and visit Crystal's blog. http://piscessunleomoon.blogspot.com and see her really interesting experience with raising diaper less children (among other things).

Crystal's experimentation is in fact giving us all a glimpse into the past: a past which did not have diapers or any of the other so called modern 'conveniences' that, as Crystal has aptly demonstrated, help disconnect parents from the rhythm of life and the communications that even little infants can give. This is really amazing stuff and eye opening information that working daddies may miss, but attentive mommies know all too well. Thanks Crystal.

Her blog in fact was one of the most instructive things I have read in a while because I have been thinking about writing a major article on family life and her experience is so helpful because researchers often have so little to go on.

I mean when it comes to the Bible, often times, we just don't know what was going on in ancient times and this affects how we relate to the texts.

I know one scholar (Dr. Stephen Pfann of www.UHL.ac) who uses a grading system to help put things in perspective.

A. 100% sure were know about the issue
B. Somewhat certain
C. Less certain
D. Speculation or educated guesses

You'd be surprised how many times honest scholars will tell you that they simply do not know what was happening in the Biblical period (designating things grade 'D') because we just don't have enough evidence.

Family life is one of these. There is just so little information about all of this because most of the information we do have is passed down to us mostly from the perspective of men if we get anything at all. It is really hard to find a mother's voice sometimes and this is where Crystal's example is so helpful for the researcher.

Her experience allows us anthropologically to see how things may have been in ancient times in daily life of caring for little infants in particular. The Bible has a paucity of information on this and other sources are also equally sparse.

This is especially important to my research because I am seeking a better understanding of how to relate to the biblical texts relating to child rearing.

I'll have much more to say about this later because this has not only the potential to be a major paper, it could end up in fact being a small book, but I am asking for more inputs from mothers who have experience in this area.

But before I forget, let me say something about that child birth curse.

I am currently studying for my higher Theology degrees here in Jerusalem and I am seriously considering in the future doing my Ph.D. on the subject of equality between men and women in the Bible. This inspiration for this, in fact, comes from Karen Campbell at www.thatmom.com. Thanks Karen. Her question to me really touched a nerve. (The answer to her question is currently almost 50,000 words and counting.)

In fact, I have already started working on a dissertation in this regard with the hope that I will be able to move forward with this suggested subject for a doctorate. All in good time. Rest assured though that I will bring this material out in the future at the right time, but it is not ready yet.

However, Crystal's comment on my blog does raise a point which is important and it concerns the common conception that there is some awful curse associated with child birth. It goes back to Genesis 3:16 & 3:17. Here is a small excerpt from my possible future dissertation.

Now, after they both arrived, here is where we can thank our dear male scholars for starting us off on the wrong path of gender inequality. It starts right here in the third chapter of Genesis. Look at it here from the perspective of multiple versions. Here we want to home in two sections of Genesis 3:16 and 3.17.

Version
Text from Genesis 3:16
(about woman - Eve)
Text from Genesis 3:17
(about man - Adam)
NIV
pains in childbearing”
through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.”
NLT
pain of your pregnancy,”
“All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.”
ESV
pain in childbearing”
in pain you shall eat of it”
NASB
pain in childbirth”
“in toil you will eat of it”
God’s WORD Translation
pain and your labor when you give birth to children”
“Through hard work you will eat”
KJV
“in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children”
“in sorrow shalt thou eat”
NKJV
“in sorrow you shall bring forth children”
“in sorrow shall you eat of it”
ASV
“in pain thou shalt bring forth children”
“in toil shalt thou eat of it”
Bible in Basic English
“in sorrow will your children come to birth”
“in pain you will get your food”
Douay-Rheims Bible
“in sorrow shalt thou bring forth children
“with labour and toil shalt thou eat”
Darby Bible Translation
“with pain thou shalt bear children”
“with toil shalt thou eat of it”
English Revised Version
“in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children”
“in sorrow shalt thou eat of it”
Webster’s Bible Translation
“in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children”
“in sorrow shalt thou eat of it”
World English Bible
“In pain you will bring forth children
“In toil you will eat of it”
Young’s Literal Translation
“in sorrow dost thou bear children”
“in sorrow thou dost eat of it”

Now, in the above referenced table, you can see that the italicized words relative to the woman are: pain, pains or sorrow. However for the men, the words italicized are: painful toil, struggle, pain, toil, hard work, labour and sorrow.

Now, when we compare these two columns, we can note that the language that describes what happens to woman really looks harsher on the surface and these above referenced language differences highlight this issue. Here, on the surface, we see that woman is getting a seemingly greater punishment. This is how it has been framed by theologians down through the centuries until now. 

Modern versions correct this. For example, note my favorite, the ESV: (see http://www.esvbible.org)

    To the woman he said,
    “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing;
        in pain you shall bring forth children.
    Your desire shall be for your husband,
        and he shall rule over you.”
    And to Adam he said,
    “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife
        and have eaten of the tree
    of which I commanded you,
        ‘You shall not eat of it,’
    cursed is the ground because of you;
        in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life;
    thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you;
        and you shall eat the plants of the field.
    By the sweat of your face
        you shall eat bread,
    till you return to the ground,
        for out of it you were taken;
    for you are dust,
        and to dust you shall return.”
(Genesis 3:16-19 ESV)

What we can see though when we look at these verses in light of an accurate Biblical understanding what is here being conveyed in the original Hebrew language, a different picture presents itself.

What we must understand is that the words italicized in the first column, which are designated towards woman and the words found in the second column which are associated with man are in fact in Hebrew the very same word!

Yes, that is correct. In Hebrew, we find in these two verses the exact same Hebrew word (עצבוןgitz-tzah-vohn) is used! There is no difference in the intensity or stress, the force or level: No! Not at all. What woman was to suffer in child birth, man was to suffer by working the ground. Not more for one and less for the other. Equality by using the same term.

There is no greater degree or intensity of punishment on woman or women in this text of Scripture at all, but were one to rely on these many Bible versions, mostly created by men, one would decidedly not get this opinion.

This is really where many well intentioned people get off on the wrong foot concerning gender relations in Scripture. In this verse, the gender relations are equal! There is no greater punishment for the one over the other in the original language.

In closing, thanks again Crystal for your really important capacity building. I hope that others will give some of your ideas a go.

 











Thursday, November 17, 2011

Should we preach? publish?, or proclaim the Gospel - Yes? No? Maybe?

Should we preach? publish?, or proclaim the Gospel - 
Yes? No? Maybe?

I just got my copy of Michael Pearl's book in the post sent from a new friend in North Carolina (thanks TJ - your book is on the way). In reviewing the book, I opened up the front cover and saw a little box which says:

"All Scripture quotations are from the King James Holy Bible"

So, I went to page 35 and found Mr. Pearl's references to 'prove' his arguments in favor of spanking children. The texts he quoted were very familiar to me and to many of us. They are commonly known as the 'rod' verses. They were:

Proverbs 19:18
Proverbs 13:24
Proverbs 22:15
Proverbs 23:13,14
Proverbs 29:15
Proversb 29:17

So there it was - Case Closed. The Bible advocates spanking children. End of story. Well, not quite so fast.

I got to thinking about this whole issue once again and thought about this book and its assertions.

Here is a well intentioned Christian brother living thousands of miles away from the region where the Bible was written, using a 400 year old Bible version attempting to bring information which in some cases is over 3,000 years old into our modern day.

When I look on the front cover of the book, I saw the following page and you can review it at the following link.

http://www.newreleasetuesday.com/bookdetail.php?book_id=851

The front cover of the book shows a family riding in a horse drawn cart with a father at the reins with a wife at his side carrying a babe in arms with four other children in the wagon.

When I thought about this book and its teachings, I thought this cover was really appropriate because the information that you find in this book represents a type of a theological perspective which reflects a time about 400 years ago when people moved around by horse and buggy.

The good news is, theologically speaking, we no longer move around with horses and buggys. Today, we have airplanes that take us around the world to libraries where we can study thousands of Bible manuscripts; where online resources are the fingertips that even the non-expert can reach into the treasure troves of Bible scholarship and study at the feet of modern day Gamliels.

The bad news though is that many dear people like Michael Pearl, God bless him, continue to drive around the same old tired arguments which are based on a Bible translation, which was a monument to great scholarship in 1611, but today, it represents one of the biggest obstacles to understanding God's messages to mankind, especially concerning what the Bible means in the book of Proverbs.

And here is where we come to the title of my blog post -Should we preach? publish?, or proclaim the Gospel - Yes? No? Maybe?

I remember once my father telling of an experience he had when he first got into researching the Bible and in fact it relates to this issue we are here discussing. It concerned the issue of preaching, publishing and proclaiming the Gospel of Christ to the world.

My father was a minister as well as a college professor. The church that he was a member of was lead by a very charismatic leader. The Bible of choice in that particular denomination was the King James Version of the Bible.

The Church had a wide ranging ministry with numerous methods of outreach. They had a 'preaching' ministry and a 'publishing' ministry. Yes, the Church used all different types of outreach methods to get the Gospel message out to the world including radio and televsion.

The head of the Church not only insisted, however, in the 'preaching' ministry, but he made a big deal about the need for the Church to also engage in a 'publishing' ministry. This meant a top quality, slick four color magazine, books, booklets, pamphlets, newsletters, etc.

Now, these methodologies were used to 'proclaim' the Gospel. Anything wrong with that? No, not at all.

However, when Dad began to just do a bit of study in the New Testament, he learned that the Greek word keerusso is translated in the King James Version by several different English words: preach, preached, proclaim, proclaimed, proclaiming, publish, and published.

So when we read in Mark 13:10 in the King James Version saying: "And the gospel must first be published among all nations" we can compare this to another section in the Gospel of Matthew which describes the same event and time period. It is found in Matthew 24:14 saying: "And this gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations;"

So, Dad quickly found out that the words "published" and "preached" in these two verses are from the exact same word in the Greek language, which is the original one for the New Testament. Therefore, to say that one must have a "preaching" and or "publishing" ministry on the basis of these verses is really not justified in Scripture at all. Of course, that message is not one that Church leaders want to hear. This is because they often gain great power and influence through their "preaching" and "publishing" ministries.

There is of course nothing wrong with preaching, publishing or proclaiming the Gospel. On the contrary. What is wrong, however, is misusing the Holy Scriptures to attempt to prove that a particular Church or religious leader must engage in preaching and publishing and that Church members should pay to see that these things take place. Preaching and publishing ministries are fine and excellent things in and of themselves, but one should not use these passages as justification for demanding that Church members pay the bills for these ministerial elements based upon a wrong understanding of Scripture.

But here we get to the crux of the matter.  If these well intentioned ministers of the Gospel will use the modern tools that we have available instead of continuing to drive our Christian brethren around in the theological equivalents of horses and buggys, we might be able to avoid some of these nonsensical teachings promoted by many well intentioned but misguided religious leaders. Look at the ESV, which makes this whole issue clear.

    And the gospel must first be proclaimed to all nations. (Mark 13:10 ESV)

    And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations.
(Matthew 24:14 ESV)

So, the answer to my blog question is. Yes! We should proclaim the Gospel.

But, this all helps to contextualize something which I have dealt with in much greater detail in my book and that concerns the interpretation of those six verses that Michael Pearl uses to open and close his arguments on spanking children.

The question we have to ask Mr. Pearl and many other dear brethren in Christ is this: Should we spank? chasten? hit? switch? strike? our children in the way you tell us? Yes? No? Maybe?

Michael Pearl and many others say "Yes."

After reading my book, I think you'll agree that the answer to this question is a resounding:

No!

Note: Some of the material in this post is referenced in audio cassette tape which my father produced in the Foundation for Biblical Research in 1976 called: "A Brief Background of the Director."












Thursday, November 03, 2011

“If the King James Version was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me” & Newsletter for November


The Newsletter of the
“New Foundation for Biblical Research.”

A project of the Century One Foundation, Inc. (www.centuryone.org)
© Samuel Martin

Samuel Martin – Project Director – www.facebook.com/byblechyld

 

November 2011


  1. “If the King James Version was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me”
  2. The results of my first drawing on my blog are in
  3. Rev. Kenneth Bailey – Bringing a Middle Eastern perspective to Biblical studies

If the King James Version was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me

I can always remember my father telling me about his uncle Virgil. He never told me too much about where he lived, but I always understood that he had migrated out of Oklahoma with my father’s family in the period of 1935 known to those migrants as the ‘Dust Bowl,’ where central eastern Oklahoma was a severely affected area of soil degradation and a severe drought situation during that time.

During that time, some 2.5 million people left the Plains States and many of them left for the West. My dad’s family was a part of this migration of peoples during that time.

Dad’s Uncle Virgil was a Nazarene preacher. He came from this very conservative mind set which was fiercely independent, honest as the day is long, people who were ready to give to their country and did not like to take anything back, people who took care of their own, worked hard and only wanted a fair day’s pay for their work, were exceedingly fair, loved God and neighbour and who had the Bible as ‘God’s Word.’

Of course, when we speak about these dear people, who are my own relatives, when we are talking about the Bible, we are talking about the King James Version of the Bible.

Let me add something here about my own view of the King James Version of the Bible. I love this version. Today it is not my favourite one (everyone who reads anything I write probably knows that my favourite these days is the ESV). The King James Version is something that I grew up with. It was the first Bible my grandmother gave me. Two of my most special Bible’s I have are King James Bibles. They are my Thomas Newberry Study Bible and The Companion Bible by Dr. E. W. Bullinger.

Speaking about the Newberry Study Bible, the late British Emeritus Professor F.F. Bruce said:

"Thomas Newberry, the editor of The Newberry Study Bible, was born in 1811 and died in 1901. For most of his life he belonged to the Open wing of the Brethren movement. He resided for many years at Weston-super-Mare, England, and from there he exercised a long and fruitful expository ministry, both oral and written. He was a careful student of the Bible in Hebrew and Greek. Evidence of his minute attention to the sacred text lies before me as I write, in a beautiful copy of Tischendorf's transcription of the New Testament according to the Codex Sinaiticus, presented to him by friends in London in 1863, which is annotated throughout in his neat handwriting. It was after twenty-five years devoted to such study that he conceived the plan of putting its fruits at the disposal of his fellow-Christians in The Newberry Study Bible." - F.F. Bruce[4]

Bruce also added:
"Newberry had no axe to grind. He was a careful and completely unpretentious student of Hebrew and Greek texts, whose one aim was to make the fruit of his study available as far as possible to Bible students whose only language was English. His procedure tended to make the Biblical text self-explanatory as far as possible; he had no thought of imposing on it an interpretive scheme of his own."- F.F. Bruce[6]
After almost 150 years passing, Newberry’s Study Bible is still one of the best. They are not so easy to find, but my friends at www.archivesbookshop.com (ask for Chris) may be able to help you find one.

Of course, my most treasured possession from a Biblical point of view is my late father’s Bible, which is a King James Version National Bible.

The Bible in my family was, is and always will be simply “God’s Word.”

So, it is this King James Version of the Bible that for my family (and millions of other families around the globe, but particularly in the Western world) growing up was unquestionably known as “God’s Word.” Anytime my relatives talked about Scripture, this is how it was referred to with no ifs, ands or buts and it was always the King James Version that they had in mind.

Let’s also not kid ourselves. The King James Version may no longer be the best selling Bible version in America (in 2010), but today it still occupies the number two (New King James Version) and three (King James Version) positions on the list of best selling Bibles in the USA according to the Christian Booksellers Association figures for 2010.

However, starting around the time that my own father was starting to become a young adult (1950), changes were on the horizon concerning the Bible in America. The foundations for this had been laid some 50 years earlier.

In 1901, the American Standard Version had come out and had become a standard Bible used particularly in the seminary or university settings, but due to developments in Bible scholarship at that time (for example, the Dead Sea Scrolls were found offering some new insights into the field of Bible translation), a fresh revision of Scripture to take into account all of the latest developments was proposed. After a long period of development covering some 25 years, this new version came out officially in 1952. It was known as the Revised Standard Version.

This new version was certainly applauded by many in the academic world. Here now we had the Bible being “revised” and brought up to date reflecting the best and latest scholarship by the world’s top religious scholars (who were the very top experts assembled from around the world to undertake this ground breaking project). New readings of Scripture from the discoveries found in the Dead Sea Scrolls and in other Bible manuscripts were included in this new version. The academic world was abuzz with excitement.

During this time, I can remember the recollections of my father about this issue. At that time, he had finished two years of community college and had joined the US Air Force with the plan to become a weather forecaster. Two weeks after joining the service, the Korean war broke out. My dad’s plans were thrown into uncertainty as it looked now that airmen were not the priority, but rather infantry soldiers were needed for the war.

Because my father had had two years of community college prior to enlisting, he was tested and then selected to go to the University of New Mexico for one year at government expense to undertake an accelerated course in meteorology. While he was in New Mexico, he and a distant relative of his (who was coincidentally also serving as a weather forecaster in the same unit) started to attend church services at a Baptist church in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

My father at that time had no specific interest in going into the ministry, but as he and his relative began to be known at the church as the “university crowd”, they began to receive assignments from the church leadership to conduct Bible studies for youth and to take part in what they called “Training Union” courses.

For my dad, this was a time when he was about 20 years old and with these new duties in his mind came responsibilities. So he began to purchase some books about the Bible. I can remember rehearsing this story in a lecture he once gave where he talked exactly about this time in his life. These included a Bible Dictionary and Encyclopaedia (his first one was the International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia – ISBE for short).

He then began to take an interest in the Bible in a much greater way at this time. Shortly thereafter, dad was sent to Greenland for one year to learn arctic meteorology and was left in great isolation and this gave him a great deal of time to study the Bible independently.

During this period, we began to note that communications were beginning to become more common place. Radio was still the main media source of news for most people. Newspapers were very important sources as well and the subject of the Bible was now in the media, especially this new “Revised Standard Version” of the Bible. Yes, there was great excitement surrounding this new Bible for many academics and scholars of Scripture, but for the common everyday man on the street, this development represented a threat. One such person was my dad’s Uncle Virgil.

Uncle Virgil and the King James Version

Uncle Virgil as I said earlier was a Nazarene preacher. From all the stories I have heard about him, he was a very tall man and had a commanding presence. Nazarene church teachings were very, very conservative and oriented around the ideas of Pentecostalism and Holiness. The Nazarene Church was strongly oriented around the teachings of John Wesley. [Comment: I am by the way not singling out the Nazarene Church in this article. I only mention this story because it is a factual part of my own upbringing and I imagine that many reading this article will immediately substitute their own denominational experience for my own herein referenced. My Uncle Virgil was a dear God fearing Christian man who was doing the best that he could to live a “Christ-like” life. The values and virtues espoused by the Nazarene Church are very close to my own and the purpose of this article is only to illustrate the ongoing influence of the King James Version on our culture in the Western World].

Make no mistake about it, the Nazarene Church in this period was very conservative when it came to the Bible, which in their mind was simply “God’s Word.” The Church in general did not question too much the origin of God’s Word, they just basically accepted it as they had received it and the Bible that occupied this position was the King James Version of Scripture.

Uncle Virgil was a part of this system. It was a system which did not question Scripture, but rather focused on adhering more to the existing teachings that were found in the Holy Bible. It was this system that my dad was going to find a very hard time engaging with from an academic point of view.

“Don’t confuse us with all these new fangled ideas about God’s Word”

In 1954, my father finished his military service and was discharged and returned home to the central region of California where he grew up. During this time at one family gathering, he had an opportunity to share with some of his family members (including his own mother) some of his new found information about what was taking place in the academic world associated with the Bible. On one day, this exchange included his Uncle Virgil.

After opening up the subject for discussion, dad was given a good scolding by Uncle Virgil for introducing such silly and nonsensical information about “God’s Word.” The discussions, which were very short, ended with the following statement said in all seriousness from Uncle Virgil saying: “All of your new information does not impress me. In fact, if the King James Version was good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me.”

This by the way is not an isolated statement said by a one off person. Oh no! Anyone who has grown up in this type of a fundamentalist Christian environment may be very familiar with this type of talk and thinking. In fact, in rehearsing this article with one dear friend, she commented that she had heard the exact same phrase come from her parents who were also a part of another very conservative American denomination.

Let’s stop and think about that statement because it was said in all seriousness. Never mind if prior to 1611 (four hundred years ago now), the King James Version did not exist!

This statement to some is called on numerous websites as an “old joke.” But for those of us who have grown up in these fundamentalist type households, we know the truth. Anytime you were talking about the Bible, you were talking about it as “God’s Word.” And up until fifty years ago in America, the King James Version of the Bible was the only Bible really in mainstream America (and really in Western civilization) that was so universally accepted as “God’s Word.”

I love the King James Version

The King James Version, I reiterate here, is one that is so special and close to my heart, but it, like all English Bibles today, has its limitations. This is especially the case concerning many of the texts relating to corporal punishment of children in the book of Proverbs. But, to my dad’s Uncle Virgil, God rest his soul, this Bible had no limitations and certainly no deficiencies! After all, it was God’s Word, which means that it is perfect. Yes, perfect!

I challenge any person to pick up a Gideon Bible and in the beginning there is a section which says: “What the Bible Says about Itself.” You can read the passages quoted. One of them in Psalm 19:7 which in the KJV says: “The Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul…”

[Now I have to say here and everyone who knows me and reads my material knows that I am very conservative when it comes to Scripture. However, I am not bound by a particular Bible version especially in today’s English speaking world where in my humble opinion, all Bible versions have serious issues that force a closer reliance on the original languages as best as we can understand them. Thank God, today we, more than any other time in history, have the most powerful tools of understanding available to help us all better understand that good Old Book known as the Holy Scriptures.]

To him and many dear pastors and peoples trained up in seminaries sponsored or affiliated with certain Christian denominations, church leaders promote the King James Version because it is a part of their Church’s individual history and to see change in such structures is often a slow process that moves like molasses in Minnesota in the winter time. Churches, seminaries and church structures are often not generally amenable to change. They are certainly not interested in seeing “revised” Bible versions. This for some people is just too much. They are much more focused on preserving the old line! Hence, after almost 60 years since the RSV first came out in 1952, the KJV and NKJV still occupy the number two and three slots of best selling Bibles in the USA today.

As I said earlier, I love the King James Version and I read from it regularly, but we really need to embrace modern tools that help us to understand Scripture better. We are in an age of discovery, knowledge sharing and information and many advances have been made in Scriptural understanding in the last 150 years.

Just as today we are now communicating with I-Phones and the Internet and are no longer communicating with tin cans connected by a piece of string, let us also embrace the very best 21st century Biblical scholarship when it comes to Scripture and hold the King James Version in the proper reverence that it deserves.

Of course, we are not talking here about fundamental doctrines of Christianity which every Christian shares, but Bible knowledge is increasing and we need to use the modern tools we have today to help us better understand that good Old Book.

We, I believe, need to embrace these changes and to realize that change is a good thing relative to the increases in understanding we have about points of Scripture which may need illuminating for us. These changes are for good and are only going to help us better understand that good old book: The Holy Bible.

Note: The historical reconstruction in this post above utilized an audio cassette taped lecture by may late father from the Foundation for Biblical Research from 1976 titled: "A Brief Background of the Director."

2. The results of my first drawing on my blog are in

I am pleased to announce that the results of the first drawing I held on my blog (www.samuelmartin.blogspot.com) are in.

I was giving away two books. The first book is:

Corporal Punishment in the Bible: A Redemptive Movement Hermeneutic for Troubling Texts by Professor William Webb

I have really rejoiced in first learning of this book (thanks Doug) and then reading it myself. I am so pleased to give it my most positive unqualified endorsement.
It has been such a blessing for me to get to know Prof. Webb in several personal contacts and I do look forward to reading all of his other books.
I do hope it will be very soon where we will hear a small communication from his wife, whose spirit I feel is really close at hand in Professor Webb’s book. I hope to post that on my blog very soon. http://samuelmartin.blogspot.com/2011/10/v-behaviorurldefaultvmlo.html
 
For more links, reviews and other information about Professor Webb and his book see: http://redemptivechristianity.com &                                http://www.ivpress.com/cgi-ivpress/book.pl/review/code=2761

I really think this is a wonderful book and I hope you will support it. I know you will be blessed by it as I have been Get your copy here - https://shop.ivpress.com/epages/IVP.storefront/en/addtobasket/0-8308-2761-7

Congratulations to B.C. from Eastern Oregon who won this book by Prof. Webb.

Congratulations also to G.S from South Carolina who won a copy of my own book

Stay tuned for more drawings of great books via my blog and newsletter.

3. Rev. Kenneth Bailey – Bringing a Middle Eastern perspective to Biblical studies

I’ve been talking lately about Rev. Kenneth Bailey’s books and here is a link to all of them from Inter Varsity Press on one page. http://www.ivpress.com/cgi-ivpress/author.pl/author_id=1185.

Rev. Bailey’s books bring a very unique perspective to New Testament studies: a Middle Eastern one. Do yourself a favour. Consider adding these wonderful books to your library. Honestly, you will be so glad you did. His studies on the Prodigal Son, Jesus and Paul through Middle Eastern eyes are so eye opening. I know that most of you who read my newsletter will rejoice in these books. I am so please to be mentioning them because I know they will bless you in your study of that good old book: The Holy Scriptures.

Until Next Month,

Samuel Martin