Beliefnet
For Bible Study Nerds
May 2014 Archives

Reader Appeal: Students, Bible Study Groups, Families Genre: Bible Reference FBSN Rating: B+ “God made Eve from Adam’s rib. Are you ribbing me?” “The Bible says ‘sons of God’ had sex with human women, who gave birth to giants. Doesn’t […]

Matthew reports that “Herod” was the bloodthirsty king who ordered the mass murder of all boys aged two and under in Bethlehem and the surrounding area. (2:16). History knows this king as “Herod the Great,” though “great” seems a stretch […]

At the time when the angel instructed Joseph to flee King Herod, Egypt had become a kind of safe haven for Jews forced to leave their home country. Egypt (like Herod’s Judea) was under Roman control—but was outside of King […]

Reader Appeal: Students, Parents, Pastors, Bible Study Leaders Genre: Study Bible FBSN Rating: B It’s easy to appreciate the scholarship invested in the verse-by-verse commentaries that make up the bulk of The MacArthur Study Bible. From Genesis 1:1 to Revelation […]

Matthew references Jeremiah 31:15 as the prophecy fulfilled by Herod’s slaughter of the innocents in Bethlehem. That Old Testament passage originally prophesied about mourning that would accompany the conquering of the Jewish kingdom of Judah by the ancient Babylonian armies. […]

The Magi gave to baby Jesus gifts of gold, incense, and myrrh. Those gifts fulfilled a prophecy found in Isaiah 60:6, and also communicated symbolic meaning. Gold in the ancient Middle East was associated with “noble purposes,” as well as […]

No one knows for sure who the Magi were that brought gifts to the baby Jesus, or exactly what their country of origin was. Matthew simply says they came “from the east,” first going to Jerusalem and then on to […]

What was the “star in the east” that the Magi saw? Only God knows for sure, but that hasn’t stopped scholars and devotees from speculating. Here are two theories: It was an angel. Elsewhere in Scripture, angels are described as […]

When Mary became pregnant with Jesus, she was “betrothed” to Joseph. Betrothal (in Hebrew, kiddushin) at that time was somewhat similar to our modern-day “engagement,” with a few significant exceptions. First, girls as young as twelve and boys as young […]

The Bible actually says very little about Jesus’ adoptive father, Joseph. Here’s what we know: Joseph was a carpenter by trade (Matthew 13:55), which meant “building and repairing in wood, stone, or metal.” He had a reputation as “a just […]