The Gospel of the Exodus
This week (Nov 4) on Shabbat Night Live we ask: What do the Hebrew Gospels have to do with the Exodus? Everything. In fact, if there was no Exodus, there is no evidence for the Bible at all — including any evidence for Yeshua!
Dr. Miles Jones explains why it is so critical to have a Hebrew foundation for the Bible, and what happens to our faith if we don’t!
Watch the episode — included on this blog post.
While you watch, consider the questions below. The timeline for each discussion topic in the video is noted on each question. Post your answers in the comments section and let’s get some discussion going!
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 15:00) As has been suggested in earlier forums, the Exodus is commonly viewed as the definitive narrative of the Hebrews, one whose arc details and justifies their identity and significance within world history. How might continued exploration of this event serve to shift their story from the margins of Western culture to the central stature of the epics of Homer, Virgil, or Milton?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 18:00) How do the words of Yeshua in Matthew 7:21-23 continue to resonate within the discourse of our contemporary, media-saturated civilization, just as in the more direct and interpersonal mode of his own time? How does his final reference here to “lawlessness” invoke not only adherence to the Torah but also indirectly chastise those who would engage in false or disingenuous rhetoric in the search for salvation?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 22:00) What has been the legacy of the 1960’s-era vogue for simplified Bible translations that sought to make evangelical Christianity more palatable and “relevant” for contemporary readers? How might the pervasive ignorance among many believers of Hebraic idioms and their connection to matters of doctrine and ritual be traced to this well-intentioned but problematic trend?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 28:00) Similarly, how might the loss of the deliberately punning language in Matthew 1:21 in latter-day English translations be received with skepticism rather than belief by the otherwise discerning student of scripture? How does the parallel between “Yeshua” and “yoshia” create a resonant and meta-dramatic level of address that enhances its prophetic context and illustrates the unity of purpose in YeHoVaH’s divine plan?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 32:00) How does the ongoing paleographic and linguistic exploration of scripture ironically demonstrate the limitations of written language which our Western world has come to prioritize as more legitimate than the spoken word? How has our loss of the nuance of face-to-face communication and the fragility of material texts combined to dramatize our dependence as believers on the rarified level of prayer for our endeavors to ascertain divine truth?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 36:00) Similarly, how does scholarly controversy over the legitimacy of the “prologue” to Luke underscore the very sentiments which he expresses in these four verses regarding preservation of truth through accuracy and evidence? How can his eventual “Homeric” reputation as the amanuensis of Paul’s evangelical travels be viewed as an ironic blessing whose textual detail we continue to parse with the accompanying guidance of prayer?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 40:00) However frustrating for a contemporary reader who seeks a straightforward and comprehensive narrative of Yeshua’s life and ministry, the four disparate gospels can be said to offer a range of perspectives on the Messiah’s persona and impact upon his listeners and chroniclers. How can the approaches of Matthew, Mark, and John be said to have suffered neglect in light of the popularity among many evangelicals of Luke’s account?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 44:00) How has Matthew 27:51 become a problematic text for both believers and skeptics in an age of increasingly advanced scientific methodology? Has its scenario been sensationalized by filmmakers and other dramatists? What is the likelihood of evidence of its literal truth being provided by those same learned communities who have offered naturalistic support for other miraculous accounts in scripture?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 48:00) Similarly, how has the significance of this passage suffered from the absence of a specific reference to the entry of the Temple in the familiar KJV translation? How does the description of the torn veil ironically serve to weaken this divine accentuation of the crucifixion for those students of scripture who are unfamiliar with the doctrinal and ritualistic ethos of this location?
- (VIDEO TIMELINE: 53:00) Can a tenable argument be made for a providential rediscovery of James and Jude as exemplary figures within our own age, aided ironically by the efforts of historians who have sought to dismiss them as apocryphal characters or amalgams of lesser individuals? How do the concise texts of the so-called “brother of Jesus” and the representative of “hopeless cases” speak with increasing relevance to today’s faithful in their advocacy of obedience to the Law and castigation of false teaching, respectively?