Archive for September, 2009

From Professor James Davila of Paleojudaica:

It really is quite easy to find a Bible these days and check what it actually says. It’s remarkable that so many journalists find this concept difficult.


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Spiritual Battle

There is more going on than what we see. Like Violet, Klaus, and Sunny, we land in the midst of a battle that was already raging before we arrived on the scene.

The Whole Armor of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.
– Ephesians 6:10-20 ESV

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The view from Tranquility Base

Last night I successfully viewed an asteroid for the first time. I found Juno as well as Uranus (which I had seen before) with the help of this article. Here’s my growing list of Solar System objects which I have sighted:

The Sun

Planets and their moons:
Earth (very easy to spot); Earth’s Moon (also not hard to find)
Jupiter; Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto
Saturn; Titan, Phoebe
(I’ve glimpsed a few other of Saturn’s moons, but they were quite faint and I’m not sure which was which)


Hale-Bopp (the most dramatic sight of all of them that I’ve seen)

By the way, “Tranquility Base” is what I’ve dubbed our nice little secluded front yard, when used as an astronomical observatory, in homage to Apollo 11 as well as the feeling of peace I have when enjoying our little corner of the universe.

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Time Stand Still

My cousin Dan’s funeral is today, and I’m very pleased that my sister is able to be there. Blessed be his memory.

I’ve now accepted the task of preaching and teaching Confirmation as well as visitation during my church’s interim period. This means that whatever posts I manage to make on this site will be short and to the point.

I’m not the biggest Rush fan, but I’ve always loved their song Time Stand Still, and it expresses a feeling I have today, thinking of my loved ones gathered together in Montana today (Please excuse the video’s goofiness):

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Jewish Studies Essays

John Meade of LXX Studies (in my blogroll) has honored me by including this site in his list of biblioblogs, that is, blogs about serious Biblical studies. In an attempt to measure up, I am posting a link to some of my Jewish Studies essays which I’ve posted online. I hope soon to have them all posted. The challenge is, I used to have them posted on my former web hosting service which I needed to vacate after we moved from South Dakota. Fortunately, some of them can still be read via the Internet Archive by following this link:


The essays for “The Religion of Biblical Israel” and the Bonus Linguistics paper don’t seem to be available, and this version of the page was too early for my “Modern Judaism” essays, but the “Jewish Theology” and “Medieval Judaism” essays are available for your perusal. These are academic papers from a graduate degree program, so they’re not exactly light reading, though you’ll see that the professor I had for those two courses liked to pose questions in witty story format, and I had lots of fun with it. I was especially pleased with my essay on Medieval Jewish Biblical Commentary, complete with pop culture references to Bullwinkle.

I’m hoping & praying to get all my essays reposted on a new web hosting service, and also to get started taking new courses this month, as I’ve been on academic leave for a year.

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Living on the edge

Today Earth passes through the plane of Saturn’s rings. In other words, Saturn’s rings are currently edge-on when viewed from Earth, so if you try looking at Saturn through a telescope, it would appear ringless. The next time this happens, kids born today will be 15 years old.

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My first devotional article has been published in the West Douglas County Record. I’ll link to it here as soon as it appears online.

UPDATE: “Life on this Earth is filled with hard knocks. In fact, many of you readers are Honors Graduates of the School of Hard Knocks, and I salute you. What do we learn when hard knocks come our way?”

Read the whole article.

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