Enoch being taken into heaven.

What exactly happens to Enoch after Genesis Chapter 5?

For the first several centuries of the Church’s history, there was no official approach to determining what was and what was not part of the Bible other than what most communities accepted. It would be several centuries after this before the books of the Bible were regularly bound in a single volume, called a Codex, thus cementing a particular concept of what was in the Bible and what was outside of it. But this process only really applies to the Western Church, the one that later identified itself as the Catholic Church and split during the Reformation. …


The Red Deer Residential School, Circa 1914

Owning Up To Harm Committed in Our Name is a Vital First Step

Earlier this summer, hundreds of bodies of children were found at the Kamloops residential school in Canada. Some of the children found in the graves were as young as three years old when they died. While murder is believed to be the cause of death for many of those found in the mass grave, survivors of residential schools across Canada and the US report suicide, medical neglect, and dangerous living conditions as being extremely common. …


Impress People At Parties With These Bible Facts

CW: This article contains discussion of some disturbing themes, including harm to children.

Between Sunday School and general pop culture, it’s easy to get a good idea of the Spark Notes version of the Bible. The basic beats of Adam and Eve, Moses parting the Red Sea, Jonah getting swallowed by a whale, and Jesus performing miracles are familiar to a lot of people. On the other hand, not quite as many people have dug into some of the lesser known parts of the Bible, and fewer still have chosen to dwell there. Many people I know limit themselves to…


The How and Why of Bible Translation

The 24th Edition of Ethnologue reports that there are about 7,000 living languages in the world, and about 4,000 of those have developed writing systems. Translators are the people who make it possible for something written in one of those languages to be read by people who speak, read, and write in another language. You encounter translated work every day, even if you don’t always realize it. …


Histories, Prophets, Gospels, and all the Rest

As a kid, my Sunday School classroom had a little chart, showing all the books of the Bible and what categories they fit in. As a seven year old, I have to be honest that this meant very little to me, and I’ll be honest and say that for a long time, I never thought about it again. The Bible was the Bible and it simply was organized the way it was organized. As I got further into seminary, however, I became very interested in how the Bible was organized. The reason is because many of the categories are not…


Misconceptions abound about the world’s most common book

The Bible is one of the most important books in human history, and has shaped the lives and religious beliefs of billions of people around the world, for better or for worse. But for all it’s ubiquity, the Bible is still not very understood by a lot of people, even if they attend worship regularly. A lot of people, believers and non-believers alike, receive a lot of information about the Bible which may or may not be accurate. A lot of this has to do with what we know or can know about the Bible. …


Big Questions About the Big Book

The Bible is an important book. This is not a controversial statement. It’s sold an estimated 5 Billion copies as of 1995 according to the Guinness Book of World Records, and has been translated into thousands of languages over the last 2,000 years. In fact, many languages gained their first written form so that the Bible could be read in those languages. A majority of Americans have a Bible in their house, and those who don’t are never more than a couple of clicks away from it using a computer or phone. Sections of the Bible are read aloud at…


Get a good Sartre on the reading the Wisdom books

These books might seem intimidating, but they are worth diving in to.

Anyone who has dipped a big toe into the world of philosophy has had a brush with Existentialism. Existentialism is, in short, a philosophical school that explores what it means to exist. This can guide us through thinking about what the meaning of life is, the meaning of non-existence (i.e. death), etc etc. It’s kind of heady stuff, but it’s also easy to see why people are attracted to it. While the existentialist movement is generally traced back to Kierkegaard in the 19th century, it shouldn’t surprise us too much that people have been thinking about these kinds of problems…


Five Tips for Anyone, Regardless of Belief

The Bible can be a little intimidating for readers, but it commands a massive presence in our culture. The Old Testament is a sacred text to two world religions, and the New Testament is spiritually vital to as many as 2.4 Billion people. For two thousand years, the texts that comprise the Bible have been read, studied, and debated in nearly nearly every nation on earth and have appeared in nearly every language. At the same time, there have been intense debates, not only about how to read and interpret the Bible, but about who is allowed to do so…


Luther has a pretty campus, but you shouldn’t have to go there to learn about this stuff.

Why pay big bucks when you can learn from me for free?

I went to Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota for two years. Originally I was going to be a pastor, but after working for a summer as an intern chaplain in a hospital, I wasn’t sure it was for me. I ended up graduating with a degree in the Old Testament, but the things I learned during my two and half years there have stuck with me. Here are five things in particular I picked up in Seminary that I wish more people knew.

1. The Bible repeats (and sometimes contradicts!) itself, and that’s ok!

This is a good place to start because it’s an old gem, but one only has…

Michael A Gold

Michael writes about history, religion, and the Bible. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and Netflix account.

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