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When God’s word is offensive

A recent online edition of Christianity Today contained an article on a controversy over how to translate the biblical phrase the Son of God in Bibles used in Islamic nations. The problem is that the Koran actually pronounces a curse on the use of such a title and many Christian missionaries have found the use of this title a positive hindrance to their evangelism. Some have adopted a compromised position of shifting away from the language of Scripture in order to avoid a hostile reaction.

The study of Bible prophecy

Notes on Daniel 7:15-16, 19, 28

I Daniel was grieved in my spirit in the midst of [my] body, and the visions of my head troubled me. I came near unto one of them that stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me, and made me know the interpretation of the things…Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth [were of] iron, and his nails [of] brass; [which] devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet;…“Hitherto [is] the end of the matter. As for me Daniel, my cogitations much troubled me, and my countenance changed in me: but I kept the matter in my heart. (Daniel 7:15-16, 19, 28 AV)

This chapter is interesting for a number of reasons:

  • It takes a chronological step backwards into the time period between Chapters 4 & 5. We should always pay attention to the chronology of Scripture. Sometimes the order in which events are recorded is not the chronological order. This has the effect of making us think and of bringing certain truths out into prominence.
  • It opens a new section in the book in that there is a move away from historical narrative to prophetic vision.
  • It concludes the Aramaic section of the book and Hebrew is again employed 8:1ff. The use of Aramaic implies a focus on Gentile affairs and interests, a Gentile perspective of events and prophecies.

Bible reading

I have just read an article that highlights the gross ignorance of Scripture that prevails among professing Christians today. The following is a quotation from the article:

  • “ Americans love their Bibles. So much so that they keep them in pristine, unopened condition. Or, as George Gallup Jr. and Jim Castelli said in a widely quoted survey finding, ‘Americans revere the Bible but, by and large, they don’t read it.’ Anecdotes abound. Time magazine observed in a 2007 cover story that only half of U.S. adults could name one of the four Gospels. Fewer than half could identify Genesis as the Bible’s first book.” [Christianity Today]