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Pete Enns & The Bible for Normal People

Monolatry: The Israelites Believed in Many Gods

In this episode of The Bible for Normal People Podcast, Pete talks about monolatry, and he explores the following questions:

  • What is monolatry?
  • If Israel believed that many gods existed, why was their God Yahweh the only deity worthy of worship?
  • What does Psalm 95 tell us about what the Israelites believed?
  • If the Israelites were monolatrous, how do they explain the greatness of Yahweh?
  • Where did the divine name come from? And what’s up with “Lᴏʀᴅ”?
  • Who is the king of all of the gods?
  • How do the plagues help us understand the theology of monolatry?
  • What’s with the beef between Yahweh and the egyptian gods?
  • What did fertility have to do with theology in the ancient world?
  • What does monolatry have to do with all the idol talk in the bible?
  • What do the judgements passed on the kings of Israel have to do with worshiping the gods of other nations?
  • Who is the Satan in God’s heavenly board meeting?
  • What is the Divine Council?
  • What do we do with these images of heavenly board meetings and divine councils in the Bible?
  • How is god talked about in ancient tribal cultures and how do we respect that?

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The Bible as a Living Document Podcast Episode

Interview with Jennifer Knust: The Bible as a Living Document

September 16, 2019

In this episode of The Bible for Normal People Podcast, Pete and Jared talk with Jennifer Knust as they explore the following questions:

  • What is textual transmission?
  • How have Bibles changed over time?
  • Why do we have so many English translations of the Bible?
  • How has our view of the Bible changed overtime?
  • When did people start caring about the “original” version of the Bible?
  • Is our obsession with the “original” version of the Bible harmful?
  • How have we strayed from the historical tradition of the Bible?
  • Where do the chapters and verses in the Bible come from?
  • Why were chapters and verses added to the Bible?
  • Do chapter and verse placements matter?
  • How old are the oldest Greek New Testament manuscripts? 
  • How do Greek manuscripts present multiple interpretations?
  • What are the difficulties in translating Greek manuscripts?
  • How have different people loved the Bible throughout history?
  • How did the Dead Sea Scrolls actually set us back in our understanding of the Bible?

Tweetables

Pithy, shareable, less-than-280-character statements from Jennifer Knust you can share. 

  • “Every [Bible] translation is always an interpretation.” Jennifer Knust
  • “Protestants have a tradition… that we should assume the importance of the original over and against tradition.” Jennifer Knust
  • “We can’t assume every copyist [of biblical manuscripts] had the same attitude towards texts that we do.” Jennifer Knust
  • “The Bible is incredibly complicated even if you’re just reading it in English.” Jennifer Knust
  • “How wonderful that there were all of these people over centuries who loved these books and tried to copy them correctly as they understood what correctly meant.” Jennifer Knust
  • “The Holy Spirit seems to move through people and nature and interaction and prayer. So wouldn’t it work in that way with scripture as well?” Jennifer Knust

Mentioned in This Episode