Books / John / Psalms

Review of @fortresspress’s “The Vine and the Son of Man: Eschatological Interpretation of Psalm 80 in Early Judaism”

In the last few decades, academia has produced few, but great intertextual scholars. I suspect that soon we will add a name such as Andrew Streett to that list. His work, The Vine and the Son of Man traces the interpretation and reinterpretation of Psalm 80 in Early Judaism, ending with the Gospel of John. But, it does more than that. Indeed, Streett offers an interdisciplinary approach — Second Temple Judaism, rhetoric, canonical theism, and intertextuality — to understanding not just how the Fourth Evangelist used Psalm 80, but so too the inherited methodology allowing him, or requiring him, to


Psalm 74 – Leviathan, Creation, and the Destruction of the Temple

If you haven’t read Psalm 74.1-23 go ahead and give it a read. I’ll wait. Done? (note, this is a quick post to get an idea down on paper) In Psalm 74, labeled in the NAB “Prayer at the Destruction of the Temple,” we read in two parts. Part 1, v1-11, the destruction of Solomon’s Temple is in view. This should not be up for discussion since the psalm lays out a perfect lament for the fall of the House of the Lord/David. In part II, v12-23, the Psalmist recounts God’s creative acts, including fighting the monster Leviathan. (Note,

Psalms / Religion and Politics

Books to Read NOW – Libya, Responses, Terror

This post was originally one of the spate coming out when Osama was killed. Now, in the midst of more turmoil directed towards the United States, I feel like they are needed once more. Temper the Psalms with the Gospels, just saying, but when you are done with that, read this one: And this one: Related articles Report: Osama bin Laden Is Dead; U.S. Has The Body ( President Obama To Announce That Osama Bin Laden Dead – They have the Body (

Books / Psalms

Sunday School: Language of Science and Faith – Psalm 8: Creation of Political Victory?

This week, we are reading the introduction for the Sunday morning discussion. (I am using the Kindle app on my iPad 2) I’ve already read this book once, for review, so this time, I am reading it again for discussion points. One of those was the author’s use of Psalm 8 to showcase the ancient way of speaking about Creation. I think that there is a lot of things going on in this Psalm – and it doesn’t really have a lot to do with a physical Creation. Like Genesis 1, it is more polemical: O LORD, our Lord,

Devotional / Old Testament / Other Posts / etc.

Reflecting on Psalm 119

Yesterday evening, I was reading ahead in the lectionary, and the responsive reading came from Psalm 119:23-24, 26-27, 29-30. This is the section of the acrostic in which the verses all start with dalet.  If you are familiar at all with Biblical Hebrew, you could look at the English translation and guess the word that repeats at the beginning of several verses.  It is derech, which the NAB and NRSV translate consistently as “way” in this text. “I told of my ways …. Make me understand the way of your precepts … Put false ways far from me ….

Maccabees / Psalms / Psalms of Solomon / etc.

Palm Branches: Intertextually Reading Revelation, Psalm 118, Maccabees and the Psalms of Solomon

Last night during our small group study on the Book of Revelation, the leader who happens to be the pastor of the congregation, said something that caught my attention. He mentioned the use of palm branches in Revelation 7.9 and the use of the palm as a symbol of Jewish nationalism during the Maccabean period. Both of these subjects – Revelation and Intertestamental literature – interest me to the point of being an obsession. The seventh chapter of Revelation occurs as an interlude between the sixth seal and the opening of the seventh seal which contains silence and the


I look up to the mountains – does my help come from there?

During recent discussions, this Psalm came up. As a resident of West Virginia, this is often a favorite of ours, considering that we are the Mountain State.Yet, when you analyze it, the mountains and their ‘help’ is condemned. The NLT has a better translation than most, which depends mainly on punctuation. Imagine yourself, standing in the valley, looking up at those mountains. You are a YHWH worshiper, in His land, watching His people bend to Ba’al. Where was Ba’al and the associated gods and goddesses worshiped? On the top of the hills and mountains. People would pray to these