The Biblearc Blog

Encouragements and Updates from Biblearc

Monthly Archives: October 2014

“Tracing the Argument”

“I am convinced that tracing the structure of the argument in the Pauline epistles is the most important step in the exegetical process.”

Tom Schreiner

In chapter 6 of his book Interpreting the Pauline Epistles, Pauline studies expert Tom Schreiner explains the importance of careful and thoughtful handling of the complex arguments in Paul’s letters. He then asks, “So where does the student turn to find a method that will help him or her to reconstruct the line of reasoning in a Pauline text?”

Why, to bracketing and arcing of course. Read the full chapter to learn more about why Professor Schreiner considers these methods to be valuable tools, and to learn more about arcing and bracketing.

See also our posts on What is Arcing and What is Bracketing.

Calvinistic Election Based on Foreknowledge

A careful reading of 1 Corinthians 1:26-29 makes clear that election unto salvation is based on God’s foreknowledge. That is, not his foreknowledge of our faith, but rather his foreknowledge of our not-ness.

So often when we read the Bible with an open heart, we discover our questions are turned on their head. Such is the case with this text. Many ask (I have!) if election is based on foreknowledge or not. The answer is “yes”—but not in the way we meant when we asked.

This is clear in the passage below. Why did God choose those whom he chose to be saved? The answer is not “it had nothing to do with that person.” But the answer is also not “because God foresaw that person’s faith.” The reason God chose those whom he chose is because of their not-ness. He chose them because they were not wise. He chose them because they were not strong. He chose them—that is God chose us—because we were those who were not. And since this choosing occurred prior to my existence and demonstration of my not-ness (Ephesians 1:4), then apparently this choosing was based upon God’s foreknowledge of that not-ness.

This is a wonder to consider, as is the purpose for which God has chosen in this way—namely, that no human being, neither the unchosen somebodies nor the chosen who were once nobodies, may boast in the presence of God.

1 Corinthians 1:26-29

For this same subject, also consider Romans 9:11, 1 Timothy 1:16, and James 2:5.

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Highlight Options: Search

In the midst of reading a passage of Scripture you find a word or phrase that you want to explore more. You don’t need to pull out the concordance, open another website, or even create a new search module in Biblearc. The new Highlight options allow you to search instantly and directly from the passage you are reading. Would you like to know how?

For those who read the original languages, you can now search a Greek or Hebrew word combination in only two clicks (and no typing!). You are going to love this.

Learn how to Search with the new Highlight Options on Biblearc.

Biblearc Global

Bible Study GlobalIf you live in America…or any English-speaking country, then you have access to a veritable wealth of biblical resources. Bible study tools in English are both affordable and accessible to you, with more information than you could ever possibly take in. With this abundance of Bible resources, we are able to pick and choose, and by God’s grace are spurred forward in our faith.

However, this abundance of resources is a blessing that the majority of the world knows nothing of, since these resources rarely exist with such access in languages beyond English. Yes, there are Bible translations available in countless languages (praise the Lord!), but little-to-no tools for deep study of the scriptures. Thus, English has become in many ways a gateway language for biblical proficiency.

But this shall no longer be! Introducing our Biblearc Global Initiative. With God’s help, we are looking to break the mold by making our Bible study resources available to people in all parts of the world, by providing them online in a host of different languages.

English has become in many ways a gateway language for biblical proficiency. But this shall no longer be!

The first part of this initiative is to work with volunteers to translate the site itself into as many languages as possible and give users access to the best available Bible translations in those languages. To date the site is available in Spanish, German and Romanian, with French presently in the works.

Secondly, we have the ambition of hosting many international online courses, also in a variety of languages. We are so very excited about our first non-English course beginning this fall, Introducción al Arcing, taught completely in Spanish by pastor and skilled arcer Josué Pineda from Honduras.

Finally, in addition to translating the site and courses into multiple languages, we recognize that many in non-Western countries are not able to pay for a subscription. Thus, when someone registers for an account on Biblearc from outside the West, their subscription is free.

Would you like to help us expand our Biblearc Global Initiative? Subscribe to the Bible Study Global add-on, and advance our efforts by paying for the subscription of a brother or sister in the non-Western world.