The Biblical Unitarian Podcast
195: Jesus, The Human High Priest

195: Jesus, The Human High Priest

October 21, 2021

The author of Hebrews offers a unique contribution to New Testament theology by portraying Jesus as the high priest. This episode explores the theology surrounding Jesus' high priesthood, looking at how the author of Hebrews understands this role and its wider purposes. We also discuss how Jesus came to inherit the position, the ways in which Jesus is qualified, how Jesus' priesthood is superior to Aaron's, and the ways Jesus' role relates to the God who installed Jesus in this new priesthood. 

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194: The Human Jesus in Hebrews Chapter 2

194: The Human Jesus in Hebrews Chapter 2

October 14, 2021

The latter part of Hebrew chapter 2 is one of the Bible's most persuasive and extended arguments for Jesus' humanity. The passage cites two quotations from the Old Testament in order to demonstrate that Jesus has human brothers and sisters. It argues that Jesus was likened to human beings in all things, including mortality, ability to be tempted, and possessing a faithful relationship with God. We also discuss translation issues with a passage that led many medieval interpreters to think that Jesus preexisted as the Son of God and eventually took upon himself human nature--a reading that has been completely abandoned by modern scholars.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MBq9UWKCdYZOx4JMaqfSnBdAPCFT7Dwvx2oaAXKmG44/edit?usp=sharing  

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193: Interpreting the Number “One” Christologically in Hebrews 2:11

193: Interpreting the Number “One” Christologically in Hebrews 2:11

October 7, 2021

The grammatically ambiguous reference to the number one in Hebrews 2:11 opens the door for two competing interpretations, both with significant implications for Biblical Unitarians. Does the passage indicate that Jesus and the believers all derive from a single creator--the Father alone? Or did the author of Hebrews intend to portray Jesus as sharing the same humanity as believers? This episode will explore Hebrews 2:11 and its lesser-known ambiguous reference, drawing theological conclusions thereafter. 

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

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192: The Christological Impact of Psalm 8 in Hebrews 2

192: The Christological Impact of Psalm 8 in Hebrews 2

September 30, 2021

Although Psalm 8 is cited and alluded to frequently in the New Testament, Biblical Unitarians have only seldom used it in their portrayals of Jesus. This episode looks at Hebrews chapter 2 and its use of Psalm 8 in order to better understand its Christological impact. We discuss the differences between the Hebrew version and the Greek version of Psalm 8, the meaning of the phrase "He made him lower," the importance of God sharing his attributes with a human creature, and the implications of all things being subjected under the human Jesus' feet.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1G13L2b06FtmBtCsF2l0wjBuDX4YIS7QYVXZSDyGbxpg/edit?usp=sharing  

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191: Making Sense of  Hebrews 1:10-12

191: Making Sense of Hebrews 1:10-12

September 23, 2021

Hebrews 1:10-12 is one of the most difficult passages for Biblical Unitarians, especially in light of its apparent designation of Jesus as the creator of the heavens and the earth. This episode offers a few suggestions on ways in which the text probably was intended to be understood by the author of Hebrews, focusing specifically on the precise wording of the citation from Psalm 102, the ongoing argument involving Jesus' greatness in comparison with the heavenly angels, Wisdom Christology, and various theological points that are to come up later in the Book of Hebrews.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1oLArUII7YSD9PQQqHf35tsjgHw8plZCMgx6Vx7gLJJg/edit?usp=sharing  

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190: Worshipping the Son in Hebrews 1:6

190: Worshipping the Son in Hebrews 1:6

September 16, 2021

Hebrews 1:6 presents some interesting interpretive issues for such a lesser-known passage. We discuss the meaning of the "world" where God led Jesus (and whether this was the first time or the second time this has occurred). We also explore the meaning of "firstborn" in the current argument between Jesus' status and that of the heavenly angels. We also look into how the heavenly realm is framed in terms of the inheritance associated with the age to come in the theology of Hebrews. Lastly, we attempt to find the original source of the quotation cited and understand the significance of angels offering worship to Jesus when they formerly worshipped God. 

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JAFRwS2XoL8zUo2kFpCBtEPh9ToY4ofqwAp3rb_zY4k/edit?usp=sharing 

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189: The Coronation of the Son in Hebrews 1:5

189: The Coronation of the Son in Hebrews 1:5

September 9, 2021

Hebrews 1:5 cites two passages from the Old Testament that both speak about God becoming the Father of the Son. Some have interpreted these passages in light of the argument in the Book of Hebrews to refer to Jesus' birth, where Jesus came into existence. Others have suggested that these quotations are referring to Jesus' baptism or even his resurrection/exaltation. This episode discusses the merits of each interpretation and suggests a solution that hopefully flows well with the argument made in Hebrews thus far.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MvITm7_aK9CEE1uKWBj_FkUsM3Y_XrkhTENl3aHNSxk/edit?usp=sharing 

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188: Does the Book of Hebrews Depict Jesus as God’s Wisdom?

188: Does the Book of Hebrews Depict Jesus as God’s Wisdom?

September 2, 2021

In this episode, we explore whether the author of the Book of Hebrews teaches Wisdom Christology in the opening three verses. We give an honest listen to what other scholars are saying about this possibility, we interact with modern objections, we look at the evidence for allusions to personified wisdom, and discuss the possibility of typology as the probable relationship between wisdom and Jesus.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ipnVvURfsP6Gg8Tpy9nHYi29up0eXW20JQGCSfpspAU/edit?usp=sharing 

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187: God and Jesus in the Book of Hebrews

187: God and Jesus in the Book of Hebrews

August 26, 2021

As we begin our study of the Book of Hebrews, we need to identify the main actors--God and Jesus. This episode looks at the person of God, his roles, and the ways in which he interacts with his creation. We also look at Jesus, the various ways he is described, and the difficult passages involving him. Lastly, we explore how God and Jesus interact and are distinguished throughout the Book of Hebrews. 

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jHPgyheHWPkq0iiw5Y0CSELidJ3_D_Qsh7S-eRtN69c/edit?usp=sharing 

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186: The Johannine Comma of 1 John 5:7-8

186: The Johannine Comma of 1 John 5:7-8

August 19, 2021

This episode explores the history, language, and persons involved in the transmission of the Johannine Comma, which is the textual corruption of 1 John 5:7-8 that mentions the oneness of the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit. The facts presented are organized into ten points.

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185: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - (Part 4 of 4)

185: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - (Part 4 of 4)

August 12, 2021

As we wrap up our study of Pauline Yahweh texts for Jesus, we look at 1 Cor 10:26, 2 Cor 3:16-17, and the future "day of the Lord." David Capes, a leading scholar in the field of early high Christology, argues that these passages clearly indicate that Jesus is the referent to OT Yahweh texts. This episode looks closely at each of these passages, their OT counterparts, and suggests that Dr Capes is mistaken in these particular instances. I also offer five reflections from studying OT Yahweh texts for Jesus in light of Paul's scriptural habits.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/10KZxi6d_BIhmR7bHh2ITgp2Gq59TG4dK5ETK9CSPsZM/edit?usp=sharing       

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184: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - (Part 3 of 4)

184: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - (Part 3 of 4)

August 5, 2021

As we continue to understand how Paul uses OT Yahweh passages for Jesus, we note that Paul cites Jer. 9:24 in both 1 Cor. 1:31 and 2 Cor. 10:17. Yet Paul's intent does not seem Christological in either instance. Furthermore, we explore Paul's quotation of Isa. 40:13 for both the Father and for Jesus (allegedly). While it is ultimately concluded that Paul does occasionally cite Yahweh passages for Jesus, the intent does not seem to be for readers to think of Jesus as Yahweh himself. 

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sdVW7BG0OPdTi4nhnutXq06nvKterQFroj15hge-qSw/edit?usp=sharing       

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183: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - Part 2

183: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - Part 2

July 29, 2021

This week's episode continues to explore the ways in which Paul cites OT Yahweh passages for Christ (and for God). We note that Paul is flexible with some of his quotations, demonstrating that the original referent in the OT citation can come to have a new referent in Paul's letters. We also explore a passage that David Capes, a leading scholar in the field of early high Christology, argues is a OT Yahweh passage used for Jesus. Lastly, we consider how Paul justifies citing Isaiah 45:23 for God in Romans and for Jesus in Philippians.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bQcJFyJtwTy6HC8-48_0_kLbCqpBhuK5-Wl3lOxAJAE/edit?usp=sharing      

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182: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - Part 1

182: Paul’s Use of OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - Part 1

July 22, 2021

In this episode, we begin exploring how the Apostle Paul used OT YHWH texts for both God and for Jesus. We note how Philippians 2 indicates that God has shared the divine name with the risen and exalted Jesus. We also see another passage referring to Jesus' lordship that indicates that he possesses the shared divine name, which Paul indicates with a YHWH citation from the Old Testament. Lastly, we look at the arguments and conclusions of a prominent scholar who sees Paul's use of YHWH texts for Jesus as evidence of early high Christology.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pqYOUdOOAv8nIcmISQoVgAyyAPJ1zwHVZWwwLyRRk-o/edit?usp=sharing     

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181: OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - An Introduction

181: OT Yahweh Texts for Jesus - An Introduction

July 15, 2021

The New Testament authors felt comfortable using Yahweh texts from the Hebrew Bible for the human Jesus. Some scholars have concluded that this data indicates that the NT authors identified Jesus as Yahweh, but this is problematic for many reasons. This episode will introduce the concept of OT Yahweh passages used in the NT for Jesus, looking at some examples as well as some helpful parallels in second temple Judaism. We conclude by using Mark 1:3--which cites Isaiah 40:3 for Jesus--as a test case suggesting that Jesus is the authorized and empowered agent of Yahweh.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1s7Mm0AKD9dTkqSGu3wrmmnCkpqIcvNyopGSl_io69eg/edit?usp=sharing    

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180: Making Sense of Titus 2:13

180: Making Sense of Titus 2:13

July 8, 2021

This episode closely studies Titus 2:13--a passage that is often used to suggest Jesus Christ is called "God." Titus 2:13 is a well-known ambiguous passage when it comes to the Greek, and it is certainly possible that Jesus is distinguished from the great God (i.e., the Father). This episode will look at both interpretations, examine the strengths of their arguments, and offer a nuanced reading that takes into account the overlooked reference to God's glory. 

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jKmwF_BsIfujsjV5FNX9UJR65w17mkJHwdKoZh688Zg/edit?usp=sharing   

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179: The Logos and Targum Neofiti

179: The Logos and Targum Neofiti

July 1, 2021

In this episode, we explore how the concept of God's "word" (Aramaic: "memra") is used in Targum Neofiti. After surveying the four ways in which this Aramaic Targum interprets the activity of the God of Israel in light of his word/memra, we turn to the prologue of John's Gospel (John 1:1-18) in order to see how the context created by Neofiti's use of word/memra helps us better understand God and his Logos. 

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/18CWkJ59IuYqtt0fu_HWIUVUEQsHVV7V9oojqPc8Ht_8/edit?usp=sharing  

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178: The Logos and Targum Onkelos

178: The Logos and Targum Onkelos

June 24, 2021

This episode explores how the "Word of God" (Aramaic: "memra") was used to explain the activity of the God of Israel in the Jewish Targum Onkelos. After organizing the various ways that Onkelos understands and uses the "memra" of God in the Torah, we look at John 1:1-18 to see if our reading of that passage is illuminated by the Jewish context created by Targum Onkelos. We conclude that the memra of God in Targum Onkelos is not a preexisting, conscious person alongside the God of Israel.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1P-Z6PmGg_Sp8uSUVMzw3Pt6SjWDaAC15jTG3ltHYK_g/edit?usp=sharing 

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177: Sacrifices and the Christian God (Part 2 of 2)

177: Sacrifices and the Christian God (Part 2 of 2)

June 17, 2021

In this episode, we continue exploring how early Christians understood Jesus functioning within sacrificial terminology that was reserved for God alone. The Book of Hebrews has a lot to say about Jesus as a high priest and as one who sacrificially offered himself to the one God. We also look at Paul's theology of the death of Jesus to see how the cross is understood in terms of a sin offering. Lastly, we explore the Lord's Supper--the Eucharist--to better understand how this meal was practiced in terms of remembering and even participating in Jesus' sacrifice to God.

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/15GoI-0DWbTZga7bf_Yzd_eHbUlYJViadtGArfI9h5A0/edit?usp=sharing     

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176: Sacrifices and the Christian God (Part 1)

176: Sacrifices and the Christian God (Part 1)

June 10, 2021

In this episode, we explore the function of sacrifices in the Ancient Near East, particularly in the ways they were differentiated from acts of worship and bowing down. Since the gods were understood to be the intended object of the offering of sacrifices and burnt offerings, we are able to examine early Christian "sacrificial" language to see whom they regarded as the true object. We note in our survey that God alone is the object of Christian "sacrifice" language, never Jesus Christ, while Jesus is sometimes the agent through whom sacrifices are made to the one God.

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175: Was Jesus a Monotheist?

175: Was Jesus a Monotheist?

June 3, 2021

In this episode, we explore a 2004 article written by James Dunn on whether Jesus Christ was a Jewish monotheist. Dunn argues from Jesus' pious upbringing, his teachings within the gospel accounts, and the lasting impact upon his earliest followers that Jesus was, in fact, an adherer to monotheism.

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174: Maranatha and the Earliest Christology of the Church

174: Maranatha and the Earliest Christology of the Church

May 27, 2021

In this episode, we explore the often overlooked meaning of the phrase Maranatha, which is an Aramaic expression meaning "Our Lord, Come!" We look into the significance of Paul using this phrase without translating it into Greek for his Greek-speaking audience. We also explore the arguably earliest Aramaic targums to see how the noun mar ("Lord") was used to determining whether Maranatha could refer to Jesus as Yahweh. In the end, we conclude that mar is not a way in which the divine name was reproduced in the Aramaic targums, while mar did refer to human masters and superiors. 

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173: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 15)

173: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 15)

May 20, 2021

In the final episode dealing with Mark's Christology, we look at the events surrounding the crucifixion of Jesus. First, we explore the significance of a concentration of "King of the Jews" references in Mark chapter 15, asking why it is that Mark has waited until Jesus' death to associate this royal title with Jesus. Next, we look at Jesus' citation of Psalm 22 in calling God "My God" and discern a noteworthy literary strategy that draws influence from the original psalm. Lastly, we look at the confession of the Gentile centurion--who calls Jesus the human Son of God--and we explore the significance of this admission for Mark's narrative purposes.

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172: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 14)

172: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 14)

May 13, 2021

In the final days before Jesus' death on the cross, Mark's narrative continues to unpack what it means to be the Son of God. In this episode, we explore the often-overlooked passage where Jesus is anointed with a costly perfume, which arguably furthers Mark's agenda of redefining the meaning of Son of God to include notions of one who dies for the people. Next, we look closely at Jesus' prayer in Gethsemane to better understand the relationship between the Son and the one called "Abba." Lastly, we break down the details in the trial of Jesus, make sense of the connection between the temple and the Son of God, and explain why the charge of blasphemy had nothing to do with a claim to divinity.

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171: The Son is Not Omniscient (Mark 13:32)

171: The Son is Not Omniscient (Mark 13:32)

May 6, 2021

In this episode, we will devote all our attention to Mark 13:32, where Jesus claims his ignorance regarding the exact dating of the Son of Man's coming. Only the Father knows this crucial date. We examine the implications of this admission by Jesus for Mark's Christology and consider if high views of Jesus fit with the conclusions of this verse. We also survey early Christian interpreters of Mark 13:32 to note the various ways they regarded the passage. Lastly, we conclude by observing a unanimous consensus among modern critical scholars on the plain meaning of Mark 13:32.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RSjo9qrYP0n4asbMTQsGAsGub8i9pwynXpH2Vzw0Xc0/edit?usp=sharing  

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170: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 12)

170: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 12)

April 29, 2021

Mark chapter 12 offers much data regarding monotheism, Christology, and Jesus' relationship to God. In this episode, we first explore the Parable of the Wicked Tenants, where Jesus is sent by God and God is portrayed in an interesting manner. Second, we look closely at how Jesus defined the Jewish God, and in doing so, expresses his commitment to unitary monotheism. Lastly, we explore how to make sense of Jesus' statement that the son of David is also the exalted Lord alongside God. 

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kgvcTKGuBMtWZFvVHaCxQgjrGhwIxzyejsjgKiFo2zg/edit?usp=sharing  

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169: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 11)

169: Mark’s High Human Christology (Ch. 11)

April 22, 2021

Jesus' entry into Jerusalem entails noteworthy stories regarding his authority and relationship to God. In this episode, we first examine the parodying nature of the triumphal entry and focus on the Christological understanding of the crowds witnessing the event. Second, we look closely at Jesus' actions within the temple and his words towards the new temple community consisting of the disciples. Finally, we explore the nature of the questions from the temple leadership towards Jesus regarding the nature of his authority and from whom he received it. 

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168: No One is Good Except God Alone (Mark 10)

168: No One is Good Except God Alone (Mark 10)

April 15, 2021

This episode focuses entirely on the initial dialogue between the rich young ruler and Jesus, where Jesus plainly deflects the good compliment and claims instead that no one is good but God alone. While this basic statement made by Jesus clearly suggests that he is not the good God, this has not stopped an army of internet apologists from trying to find ways to get the text to say that Jesus really is the good God. We also look at what modern critical scholars on the Gospel of Mark have to say about this passage and we take note of what appears to be a consensus interpretation among them.

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167: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapter 9)

167: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapter 9)

April 8, 2021

This episode looks at the portrayals of Jesus within Mark chapter 9. We first explore the account of the Transfiguration to see if we should conclude that Jesus is either divine or a prophet like Moses. We then turn to look at predictions of the suffering Son of Man and ask what this means and where the Old Testament speaks of the suffering of the Son of Man. Lastly, we explore what Mark possibly had in mind when he said that Jesus has been sent by God, asking if this "sending" language implies preexistence. We test out all of the high christological interpretations of these passages and come to the conclusion that Jesus is the highly authorized human agent of God.

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166: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 7-8)

166: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 7-8)

April 1, 2021

Mark is able to tell us about his high Christology by using healing stories of Jesus. We first look at the exorcism of the daughter of the Syrophoenician woman, who offers worship to Jesus and calls him "Lord." We then look at the first of two two-stage healing stories to see how Mark frames miracles by involving multiple steps. Just as the first stage of healing was not enough to fully restore sight to the blind man, the first confession by Peter is not enough to fully understand Mark's Christology. We lastly note that Peter, like the blind man, was in need of healing with his faulty understanding of Jesus' messianic role. After all is said and done, we marvel that Mark has repeatedly portrayed Jesus as a highly authorized human agent of the true God.

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165: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapter 6)

165: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapter 6)

March 25, 2021

This episode explores the Christology portrayed in Mark chapter six. We first look at Jesus' hometown rejection, where he outright claims to be a prophetic figure. Next, we examine Jesus' claim to be the shepherd of the sheep. Third, we ask about the Christological portrayal of Jesus when he miraculously divides the loaves and the fish. Lastly, we ask what sort of thing is Jesus saying when he speaks of himself as he walks on the water. It is concluded that Mark depicted Jesus in chapter six as a highly authorized and empowered human agent of God.

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164: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 4-5)

164: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 4-5)

March 18, 2021

As we continue to work through the high christological statements in the Gospel of Mark, we come across three fascinating stories. First, Jesus demonstrates authority over the wind and the seas, something regularly attributed to Yahweh. Second, Jesus receives worship from the demonized man. Lastly, Jesus calls himself "the Lord." This episode explores how these exalted things describing Jesus make the most sense as pertaining to one who is authorized and empowered by God.

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163: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 2-3)

163: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 2-3)

March 11, 2021

As we continue our study in the Gospel of Mark in order to better understand the highest and most exalted things said of Jesus, we come across some interesting passages. Jesus claims to be the Lord of the Sabbath. Jesus also renames disciples and commissions them in ministry. Furthermore, Jesus redefines the family structure. And yet, Jesus performs all these feats while remaining a human being, a highly authorized agent of God. 

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162: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 1-2)

162: Mark’s High Human Christology (Chapters 1-2)

March 4, 2021

Too often, interpreters interested in Christology gravitate to their favorite verses while ignoring passages used by their opponents. This episode begins a study that looks at Mark's Gospel to wrestle with the most difficult things it has to say for the Biblical Unitarian position. We focus on the highest, most exalted claims of Jesus. The goal is to better understand and become more comfortable with all that the Gospel of Mark teaches about Jesus.

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161: The Hallelujah Hymn in Revelation 19

161: The Hallelujah Hymn in Revelation 19

February 25, 2021

The hymn of worship in Revelation 19 is the only occurrence where the proper name of God, Yahweh, is brought forth into the New Testament within the phrase "Hallelujah." This episode explores this hymn to see what it says about Yahweh, his worshippers, and his righteous acts. We also explore the implications for monotheism as we look at how Yahweh is portrayed in this hymn. 

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160: Conquerors Who Worship in Revelation 15

160: Conquerors Who Worship in Revelation 15

February 18, 2021

The hymn of worship in Revelation chapter 15 depicts the ideal readers as conquering persons combined with exodus imagery. We explore how worship is a means of faithful behavior and why the true God is praised as righteous, holy, and in charge. Furthermore, we look at how the Lord God's praise fits within a monotheistic setting to understand better what the early Christians thought about God.

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159: The Victory Hymn in Revelation 12

159: The Victory Hymn in Revelation 12

February 11, 2021

The fifth worship hymn within the Book of Revelation celebrates the inauguration of God's kingdom and the authority of Jesus. Furthermore, the hymn praises the behavior of the faithful people of God in three specific ways. Since the people of God are thoroughly described in this hymn, it raises the question regarding the intended application of worship. Lastly, we explore the nature of monotheism and how the highly exalted Jesus functions alongside the only true God.

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158: The Consummated Kingdom Hymn in Revelation 11

158: The Consummated Kingdom Hymn in Revelation 11

February 4, 2021

At the return of Jesus to consummate the kingdom of God, a hymn breaks out within the narrative of the Book of Revelation. This episode looks at the contents of this call-and-response hymn, asking about how it would serve as praise within the context of suffering and how those praised in the hymn would have been understood within early Christian monotheism. We also note the contents of the worship hymn that celebrate the events of the second coming, which include the judgment of God, the rewarding of the righteous, and the destruction of the wicked.

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157: The Hymn to God and the Lamb in Revelation 7

157: The Hymn to God and the Lamb in Revelation 7

January 28, 2021

This episode explores the call-and-response hymn in Revelation chapter 7. In doing so, we notice that Revelation's ideal readers are offering worship unto both God and to Jesus within a single hymn. We discuss the implications of worshipping the Lamb alongside the only true God and we suggest that God's identity is not threatened within this worship practice.

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156: Why You Should Worship the Lamb (Revelation Chapter 5)

156: Why You Should Worship the Lamb (Revelation Chapter 5)

January 21, 2021

In Revelation chapter 5, the ideal readers initiate a worship hymn to Jesus. In doing so, the reasons for Jesus' worthiness are detailed, giving attentive readers a better understanding of why hymnic praise can (and should) be offered to a highly exalted human being. This episode explores the hymn offered to Jesus and encourages its listeners to become participants, rather than mere readers.

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155: Hymnic Worship in Revelation Chapter 4

155: Hymnic Worship in Revelation Chapter 4

January 14, 2021

The Book of Revelation offers seven hymns that tell us much about the worship practices of the early church. This episode looks at Revelation's first hymn, located in chapter 4. The object is the one seated upon the throne, who is repeatedly expressed with singular pronouns and verbs. We also look at how the ideal readers of Revelation are invited to participate in this hymn through active worship practices, by singing about God's unique role as the Creator, and even acknowledging creation's preexistence within God's foreknowledge.

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154: Jesus as the Word of God in Revelation

154: Jesus as the Word of God in Revelation

January 7, 2021

In Revelation 19:13 Jesus is called "the word of God." Is this a reference to the Prologue of John's Gospel, where the word is with God in the beginning? Or is the word of God a descriptive reference to Jesus' own preaching of the gospel of the kingdom? This episode explores how the phrase "word of God" functions in the Book of Revelation, looking closely at Jesus himself as a faithful witness of the good news.

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153: The Christology of the Covenantal Groom

153: The Christology of the Covenantal Groom

December 31, 2020

Within both testaments of the Bible, the covenant is often portrayed in terms of a marriage. While the Hebrew Bible regards Yahweh as the covenantal husband, the New Testament unambiguously insists that the husband is now Jesus. This episode explores how both testaments depict the marriage metaphor within the covenant relationship in order to discern the Christological implications of the husband/groom.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1YY29bln8YjHz0LeXvpruYisbKo00REQiG4daSyM3SiU/edit?usp=sharing   

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152: The Unholy and Holy Triads in the Book of Revelation

152: The Unholy and Holy Triads in the Book of Revelation

December 24, 2020

Biblical scholars and commentaries on the Book of Revelation often portray the three antagonists--the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet--loosely as the "unholy Trinity." The implication is that the unholy Trinity must be the evil counterpart to the "Holy Trinity." This episode explores these concepts and examines whether "trinity" is an appropriate term for the three antagonists. We also look at the parallels between the unholy triad and the holy triad to see if the doctrine of the Trinity is actually presented in the Book of Revelation. 

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151: The Leto Myth and Christology in Revelation 12

151: The Leto Myth and Christology in Revelation 12

December 17, 2020

Revelation 12:1-6 depicts the cosmic struggle between the woman and the dragon. While modern readers are probably correct in interpreting these figures are the people of God and the devil, they often fail to note that this story is a retelling of an ancient mythic fable involving the woman Leto and the dragon Python. This episode explores the Leto Myth and compares it with its Christian retelling in Revelation 12 in order to see the Christology presented for Revelation's readers to adopt.

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150: The Lion and Lamb

150: The Lion and Lamb

December 10, 2020

The Christology within the Book of Revelation portrays Jesus as both a lion and a lamb. This episode explores these images, asks about their messianic significance, and places special emphasis on the literary motif where the lamb further defines the manner in which Jesus conquered as a lion. The result is that Jesus is thoroughly regarded as a human ruler who descended from a long line of notable Israelite persons.

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149: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 3 of 3

149: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 3 of 3

December 3, 2020

As Jesus speaks to the Christian communities in Philadelphia and Laodecia, much can be gathered about the Christology presented in the Book of Revelation. Various titles insist that Jesus is a trustworthy and reliable speaker. Furthermore, Jesus differentiates himself from God, who is identified as Jesus' God and Jesus' Father. Moreover, we learn that God has shared his prerogatives of kingship and dominion with the risen and exalted Jesus.

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148: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 2

148: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 2

November 26, 2020

When Jesus reveals himself to the churches in Thyatira and Sardis, we learn much about the Christology of the Book of Revelation. This episode explores how Jesus presents himself to these two Christian communities. We pay special attention to how Jesus frames himself in light of the history and social setting of these cities. Furthermore, we note how Jesus still has a God, who is the Father of Jesus. 

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147: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 1

147: Jesus Speaks to the Churches of Asia Minor - Part 1

November 19, 2020

The risen Jesus appeared to John the Seer and told him to write what he saw to seven churches in Asia Minor. Within these letters, Jesus speaks in ways that reveal a lot about who he is and the authority he possesses. This episode explores the first three letters to the seven churches in Revelation to see what we can learn about Jesus. What we find is a Jesus that makes the most sense within a high human christological paradigm.

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https://docs.google.com/document/d/1VBkVTF-okPtTrkDFeR6Lk0Rjyyc_MEXAK0dVKsf0pK4/edit?usp=sharing  

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146: The Appearance of Jesus to John in the Book of Revelation

146: The Appearance of Jesus to John in the Book of Revelation

November 12, 2020

In Revelation chapter 1, the exalted Jesus appears to John the Seer. John offers readers many descriptions of Jesus that reveal much about his personal Christology. This episode looks at seven of these characteristics and examines them from a Jewish theological perspective, from a Roman imperial perspective, and from a scriptural allusion perspective. What we find is that Jesus is a highly exalted and greatly authorized human being. 

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To view the notes from this episode please click the link below:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1319nifU40wA7UxnBMWHxUI-ISGD8cB3LCFDNKJzfqHM/edit?usp=sharing 

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