Studies on the book of Genesis

‘Genesis’ means ‘origin’. Here we have the origins of the world, of life, of mankind, of marriage, and of the entry of sin into a world that God had declared to be ‘very good’. To dismantle Genesis is to dismantle the whole Christian view of the origins….. Read More


Studies on the book of Ruth

Ruth belongs to the 12th or 11th century B.C., and tells of how Naomi went to the land of Moab where her husband and her two sons died. She then returned to Judah with one of her daughters-in-law, Ruth. Ruth as a widow then married Boaz, her kinsman-redeemer, and so became the great grandmother of King David. At one level, it is a charming little story, with a happy ending. Iain Campbell says that it is ‘at heart, a romance’, while Barry Webb calls it ‘a gentle book’. It is both those things, but God’s kindness has a severe side… Read More


Studies on the book of Nehemiah

Nehemiah, while a cupbearer in the court of the Persian king Artaxerxes I, heard that the walls around Jerusalem had been broken down. The king of Persia allowed Nehemiah to journey to Jerusalem in 445 B.C., and serve as governor. The walls were rebuilt (Neh.1-6), and true worship was restored (Neh.8-10), the city was repopulated and there were celebrations at the dedication of the wall (Neh.11-12), and later the renewal itself was renewed (Neh.13)….
Read More


Studies on the book of Esther

Joyce Baldwin: ‘Everyone loves a story’. Like the story of Joseph, and Ruth too, that of Esther is an engrossing account of God’s working through human history using human agencies. Yet God does not appear on centre-stage. In fact, His name is not mentioned at all….. Read More


Studies on the book of Job

The problem of how one God can exist who is sovereign, good, and loving has long been recognised as one of the most difficult ones for the Christian faith to explain…The relationship between God, the suffering of the righteous and the prosperity of the wicked is an issue which is often raised in Scripture….. Read More


Studies on David

There are 58 references to David in the New Testament, and Christ is described both as the Son of David and the Lord of David….. Read More


Studies on the books of Haggai, Zechariah & Malachi

Jeremiah  preached  just  before  the  Babylonians  destroyed  Jerusalem  in  587 or  586  B.C.  This  was  a  terrible  disaster  with  the  kings  being  usurped,  the  temple  being  destroyed,  and  most  of  the  people  going  into  exile.  All  the  promises  of  God  to  His  people  looked  like  they  were  going  to  collapse  in  utter  failure….. Read More


Studies on the book of Matthew

The scholarly consensus now – which may not be worth much – is that Mark was the first Gospel written, and that Matthew abridged it but then added his own material to make it longer. The so-called Griesbach Hypothesis is that Mark used Matthew i.e. Matthew came first.
Matthew is the tax collector in 9:9-13, who is called Levi in Mark 2:13-17. It was by no means unusual for a person to have two names e.g. Simon Peter, John Mark. By the second century, Matthew had become the Church’s favourite Gospel…… Read More


Studies on the book of 1 Corinthians

The church at Corinth was a troubled one, living in the midst of a very permissive society. Because the church was so troubled, Paul covers a wide variety of subjects in First Corinthians – divisions (1 Cor.1-4), sexual morality (1 Cor.5-7), asserting one’s rights (1 Cor.8-10), the role of women, together with the Lord’s Supper (1 Cor.11), the use of gifts (1 Cor.12-14), and the resurrection body (1 Cor.15). So there are plenty of issues to deal with! …… Read More


Studies on the book of Hebrews

Donald Guthrie says that Hebrews poses more problems than any other New Testament book – but has he read the book of Revelation? The Council of Trent and the KJV attribute it to Paul, but it is actually anonymous. The author  refers to himself, but not by name (13:19, 22-23). Hebrews 2:3 does read like a
second-generation work, not one from the hand of Paul. Read More


Studies on the Epistle of James

The epistle of James is not dated. Some date it fairly late, and see it as a correction of those who misunderstood Paul’s emphasis on free grace to be a denial of the need for works. But Paul raises this issue in a number of places e.g. in Galatians 5-6 (probably his earliest epistle) and in Romans 6. Others date the epistle quite early. Any date given is only a guess…..
Read More