DiscoverThe Bible as Literature
The Bible as Literature

The Bible as Literature

Author: The Ephesus School

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Each week, Dr. Richard Benton, Fr. Marc Boulos and guests discuss the content of the Bible as literature. On Tuesdays, Fr. Paul Tarazi presents an in-depth analysis of the biblical text in the original languages.
535 Episodes
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A Whirling Graveyard

A Whirling Graveyard

2021-03-0428:57

It is practically impossible for human beings to consider any question without worrying about what’s in it for them. Unfortunately (or fortunately) for us, the Lord’s teaching in Matthew disallows this question. Jesus blows past the many anxious and self-involved human questions to posit the post-apocalyptic, divine premise of Genesis: everything created is already returning to the dust. Based on this premise, there is only one question: is there anything that does not pass away? Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 24:1-3. Episode 370 Matthew 24:1-3; Music: Darkest Child by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3615-darkest-child License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
The Scriptural Canaan

The Scriptural Canaan

2021-03-0217:50

This week, Fr. Paul concludes his discussion of Genesis 17. (Episode 159)
A Desolate House

A Desolate House

2021-02-2527:41

Heralding his Father’s Kingdom, Jesus bookends the conquest of Jerusalem in Matthew with the same words that announced his entrance: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.” Ending this section with a warning: “from now on you will not see me until you say” Matthew’s gospel extends God’s mercy to Jerusalem one last time. All of us have one final chance to confess our unrighteousness; One last opportunity to seek shelter under God’s wings instead of security wrought by the work of our own hands. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:37-39. Episode 369 Matthew 23:37-39; Music: Big Drumming by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/7524-big-drumming License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
In today’s program, Fr. Paul explains that circumcision was given to undermine Hellenistic culture. (Episode 158)
The Avenger

The Avenger

2021-02-1834:48

Whether fighting for your values or fighting for justice, Matthew’s gospel begs the question: who are you fighting? In human narratives—egotistical by nature—you are the good guy, fighting your enemy. This compelling personal narrative, born of ego and shaped by your experience, is a rejection of God. In Scripture, you, yourself, are the Lord’s enemy. Instead of trying to bring the Bible to your life—to make it relevant for today—so that you can judge your neighbor, you must transport yourself into the Bible’s world, where you are judged, where you are the hypocrite of Matthew 23. To borrow a line from Brian Morton: “We’d all be better readers if we realized that it isn’t the writer who’s the time traveler. It’s the reader.” Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:33-36. Episode 368 Matthew 23:33-36; Music: Heroic Age by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3870-heroic-age License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
This week, Fr. Paul begins his discussion of Genesis 17, noting the significance of name changes in the Bible. (Episode 157)
A Light to the Nations

A Light to the Nations

2021-02-1125:04

Ancestor worship is as old as dirt. Whether we lift up our ancestors or condemn them, our true concern is how others see us and what our children will think of us. We pontificate about being on “the right side of history” because we want to be right, even as the Prophets announce the condemnation of history and the Law proclaims that all of us are wrong. In Matthew, Jesus exposes the whole conversation as a big scam. The question is not which ancestor was right. On the contrary, the point is that all humans are unrighteous and no better than those who went before us. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:29-32. Episode 367 Matthew 23:29-32; Music: Trouble With Tribals by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/6427-trouble-with-tribals License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
Beer-lahai-roi

Beer-lahai-roi

2021-02-0919:44

In this weeks episode, Fr. Paul concludes his discussion of Genesis 16, noting the appearance and subsequent itinerary of Beer-lahai-roi. (Episode 156)
False Prophets

False Prophets

2021-02-0419:45

In Ezekiel 13, the prophet warns against those who speak their own words, the inspiration of their own thoughts, from their own heart. Such prophets, Ezekiel warns, spread lies and build whitewashed walls; the Lord is against them, he warns, and the work of their hands will surely fall. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:25-28. Episode 366 Matthew 23:25-28; Music: Unnatural Situation by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/4567-unnatural-situation License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
Hagar

Hagar

2021-02-0218:00

Elucidating the Hebrew scripture by means of his knowledge of Arabic and drawing upon the Latin text, this week Fr. Paul discusses the mistreatment of Hagar and the interesting play on Exodus in Genesis 16. (Episode 155)
Blind Guides

Blind Guides

2021-01-2818:45

The benefit of following a lectionary is that it forces those in church to hear the assigned reading with no regard for who is present, how they sin, or what they prefer to hear. If they are present, the judgment of the reading applies to them. Period. Full stop. When we deceive ourselves, picking and choosing the reading or the verse; when we attempt to discern what should be emphasized or what we think applies to us; we imagine that we are something, when we are nothing. We make ourselves a god. In the Bible, the only thing worse than a city-builder is a city-builder with a god complex. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:23-24. Episode 365 Matthew 23:23-24; Music: Gearhead by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3799-gearhead License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
This is What Sheep Do

This is What Sheep Do

2021-01-2621:35

This week Fr. Paul reiterates that scripture calls all the nations to live in their cities as though they were sheep in the wilderness. (Episode 154)
Above the Heavens

Above the Heavens

2021-01-2125:32

Be they religious or philosophical, human systems of thought seek to discern what is good and what is evil. The Gospel of Matthew dynamites this approach by usurping human power structures and dismantling human ethics, replacing both with God’s divine judgment, firmly seated outside our control and beyond our understanding. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:16-22. Episode 364 Matthew 23:16-22; Music: MTA by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/4009-mta License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
Covenant with Abram

Covenant with Abram

2021-01-1918:07

In today’s episode, Fr. Paul begins his discussion of Genesis 15 and the covenant with Abram. (Episode 153)
Do Not Become Like Us

Do Not Become Like Us

2021-01-1421:06

Following the Old Testament’s line, which sets Israel apart to demonstrate that Israel is no better, Matthew’s condemnation of the Scribes and Pharisees consolidates the Bible’s rejection of exceptionalism. Where nations, religions, institutions, social groupings, and even families scramble to proclaim, “become like us,” resoundingly, the biblical writers warn everyone, “do not become like us!” Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:13-15. Episode 363 Matthew 23:13-15; Music: Eastern Thought by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3692-eastern-thought License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
King of Salem

King of Salem

2021-01-1215:501

This week, Fr. Paul concludes his discussion of Genesis 14, noting the special meaning of Melchizedek’s name and the significance of the rare designation, priest of God Most High. (Episode 152)
Humiliation

Humiliation

2021-01-0730:38

While American Christians fight for social relevance in the culture wars, the writers of the New Testament cancel themselves. Enough said. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:5-12. Episode 362 Matthew 23:5-12; Music: Terminal by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/4478-terminal License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
We Are Not It

We Are Not It

2021-01-0515:30

In today’s episode, Fr. Paul kicks off the new year with a discussion of Genesis 14, noting that the people do not return to the so-called land of Canaan but to the heavenly Zion. (Episode 151)
Do Not Lead by Example

Do Not Lead by Example

2020-12-3118:20

Blinded by extreme solipsism, it is practically impossible for Americans to recognize—let alone obey—correct words spoken on the lips of people we consider wrong or evil. Where God uses the hypocrisy of his followers to enlighten the world, we use the same to destroy it. Like childish teenagers reveling in stupidity and empty rebellion, we use the hypocrisy of others to avoid accountability for our own. We embrace destruction to prove that we don’t have to listen. Thankfully, Jesus addressed this sin long before there was a United States, and his words will stand long after we are gone: "The scribes and the Pharisees are seated on the chair of Moses; so practice and observe whatever they tell you...” (Matthew 23:2-3) If ever there were a New Year’s pledge that could save the country, this is it. Richard and Fr. Marc discuss Matthew 23:1-4. Episode 361 Matthew 23:1-4; Music: Jackhammer by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/4065-jackhammer License: https://filmmusic.io/standard-license
Shepherd Lingo

Shepherd Lingo

2020-12-2918:57

In this week’s episode, Fr. Paul explains that Genesis 13 provides the lexicon for the rest of the story. (Episode 150)
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Comments (3)

Daniel Stout

i thought the eye of the needle was a small opening in the Mediterranean Sea that was plagued with huge waves making it incredibly difficult for ships to navigate. must be the mandela effect lol

Aug 7th
Reply

Daniel Stout

I'm really glad i found your podcast...I was searching for a deeper Christian podcast...anyways, keep up the good work...One question..Why do you (and many other pastors) refer to yourself as "father" when our commander in chief "Jesus Christ" plainly states in the Gospels, not to refer to any man as father for you only have 1 father, He who is in Heavan? A Catholic priest once told me that there were many different words for father back then...This answer is not sufficient for me or sufficient enough to risk going against Gospel...Just curious

Jul 19th
Reply

Gary Sarkessian

the resurrection of Jesus is escatalogical, right?

Feb 21st
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