Favorite Bible Verses (Part 4)

What is your favorite Bible verse?  Americans have weighed in on this question.  In this episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, Micah and Curtis  discuss Paul’s second most popular passage, this one from the book of Romans.

Also in this episode:

  • The legend of the Holy Grail
  • Richard Dawkins concludes that religious faith is a cop-out
  • What not to say at funerals
  • How Paul could defend his explosive statement about God’s purposes.
  • And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.  (Romans 8:28)

 

 

Favorite Bible Verses (Part 3)

What is your favorite Bible verse?  Americans have weighed in on this question.  In this episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, Micah reflects on the beautiful passage from Isaiah that promises that we shall mount up on wings like eagles.

Also in this episode:

  • What is a Kewpie?
  • America’s national emblem
  • Why we love eagles
  • What is unique about Isaiah 40?
  • Isaiah 40 Why do you say, O Jacob,
        and speak, O Israel,
    “My way is hidden from the Lord,
        and my right is disregarded by my God”?
    28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
    The Lord is the everlasting God,
        the Creator of the ends of the earth.
    He does not faint or grow weary;
        his understanding is unsearchable.
    29 He gives power to the faint,
        and to him who has no might he increases strength.
    30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
        and young men shall fall exhausted;
    31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
        they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
    they shall run and not be weary;
        they shall walk and not faint.

Favorite Bible Verses (Part 2)

What is your favorite Bible verse?  Americans have weighed in on this question.  In this episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, Micah and Curtis  address assumptions regarding Philippians 4:13.

Also in this episode:

  • Should UFC Fighters praise God when the knock their opponent out?
  • What kind of headband does Curtis use when he works out?
  • Why context is so important when reading the Bible
  • I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

Favorite Bible Verses (Part 1)

What is your favorite Bible verse?  Americans have weighed in on this question.  In this episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, Micah and Curtis  begin a discussion on our favorite Bible verses.

Also in this episode

  • The problems with taking scriptures out of context
  • The worst bible verses to put on church signs
  • Jeremiah 29:11  For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

 

Celebrating Christmas

Christmas is the day that we choose to honor the birth of Jesus.   In this special edition of the  Scripture and Spice Podcast, Micah Spicer and Curtis Hannah discuss the purpose of Christmas and contemplate the way we choose to spend it.

Jesus: our Prince of Peace

For Christians, Jesus is our Prince of Peace.  In this world that celebrates violence, what can we learn from the ways that Jesus handles violence?  During Advent, we celebrate the peace that God gives to the world through Christ.  In this episode Micah and Curtis contemplate ways to achieve peace in our world today.

Also in this episode:

  • We consider Jesus our Prince of Peace, but there was another Prince of Peace in the ancient world.  Who was this hero?
  • What do the disciples think about achieving peace?
  • How do we achieve peace in our world today?
  • Scripture of the Day:  Isaiah 9: 6-7

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon[d] his shoulder,
    and his name shall be called[e]
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace
    there will be no end,

Hope of Christmas

Why is the season of Advent is a special time to recognize the anticipated arrival of the Lord Jesus?   The festivities and family traditions of Christmas serve a purpose, but cannot match the hope God grants us through the coming of Christ.  Micah addresses the underlying message of comfort that arrives on the first Christmas.

Also in this episode:

  • Why is Advent a celebrated season given that Jesus’ birthday is not specified in the Bible?
  • What is God’s message to those who suffer?
  • What lessons did God teach Micah with the passing of his father?
  • How can churches remember the sufferings of their parishioners during Christmas?
  • Scripture of the Day:  Isaiah 40:1-5

Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
    and cry to her
that her warfare[a] is ended,
    that her iniquity is pardoned,
that she has received from the Lord‘s hand
    double for all her sins.

A voice cries:
“In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord;
    make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be lifted up,
    and every mountain and hill be made low;
the uneven ground shall become level,
    and the rough places a plain.
And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,
    and all flesh shall see it together,
    for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

Paul the Decorated

What makes Paul, the Apostle, an authority figure in the early church?  Does he have the right education, credentials, or job experiences that make him an expert?  Questions of authority arise early and often during Paul’s career.  In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, we consider church authority in our times and in Paul’s day.

Also in this episode:

  • What’s on your resume?
  • How does society recognize achievements?
  • Paul’s complicated relationship with the Corinthians
  • What gives someone authority in church?
  • Scripture of the Day: 2 Corinthians 11:22-27

23 Are they servants of Christ? I am a better one—I am talking like a madman—with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. 24 Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; 26 on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; 27 in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food,[b] in cold and exposure.

Problems with Paul

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  While many admire the man, others characterize him as a sexist and supporter of slavery. In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah address these concerns by examining Paul’s theology and his actions.

 

Also in this episode:

 

– How to pronounce Philemon

– Does Paul support slavery?

– Is it fair for us to expect figures from the past to have transcended their times?

– Scripture of the Day: Philemon 1-25

Paul’s Faith is Tested

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  How does Paul handle tragedy and suffering? More specifically, what does Paul do when his faith is shaken?  In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah suggests that Paul uses tragedy and suffering to shape and grow his faith.

 

Also in this episode:

 

– When our faith gets shaken

– What kind of things challenge our faith?

– How do we respond when our faith is challenged?

– Scripture of the Day: Acts 19:22

Celebrating Unforeseen Success

 The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  In a time of grief and despair, Paul receives news of unheralded success. The Thessalonian Congregation is standing firm in their convictions to follow Jesus in spite of suffering.   In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah and Curtis discuss Paul’s reaction to this good news.

 

– That’s a pleasant surprise!

– Thessalonians as Paul’s crowning achievement

– Pastoral concerns to grieving families

– What happens to those who die before Christ’s return?

–  Scripture of the Day: 1st Thessalonians

1 Thessalonians 4   13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. 14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. 15 For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord,[d] that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.

Foolishness of God

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  In his day, Paul presented a unique religious perspective; namely, to serve a crucified messiah.  Opponents would have his considered this message foolish. In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah & Curtis discuss Paul and his thoughts on the folly of his own beliefs.

 

– Wisdom and Foolishness

– Scandal of the Cross

– Why the message of a crucified messiah is difficult to sell in the 1st Century?

– What does it mean to preach Christ crucified?

– Scripture of the Day: Proverbs 10:14, Proverbs 7:22-23, Proverbs 26:11 & 1st Corinthians 1:18-25

Paul: On Mission

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  How did Paul interpret his purpose in life?  In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah explores Paul’s first missionary journey, and how his experiences helped him to grow as a disciple of Christ.

Also in this episode:

  • Calling and Vocation in church
  • What was the Apostle Paul’s purpose and mission?
  • How did the Apostle Paul come to understand his purpose?
  • The missionary Journeys of Paul
  • Which US President did not put “President” on his tombstone?

Paul Faces Conflict

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  Paul encountered conflict, not just with opponents of Christianity, but also faced obstacles within the church.  In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah acknowledge issues of conflict that plague Paul’s ministry and explores how Paul addresses said conflict.

Also in this episode:

  • Hear Micah talk about the first church he served as pastor.
  • What was the Apostle Paul’s first ministry assignment
  • How should we we address conflict in the church?
  • Challenges in Antioch
  • The role of compromise when there are disagreements
  • Scriptures of the day:  Acts 11:19-30 & Galatians 2:11-21

Paul and his Conversion

The Apostle Paul is considered a hero in the Christian faith.  He preaches the gospel, performs miracles, and suffers immense persecution as a result.  How did Paul interpret his encounter with the risen Christ?  In this Scripture & Spice Podcast episode, Micah offers insights into how Paul could have interpreted the Damascus Road experience that would forever change Paul’s life.

Also in this episode:

  • Bible characters and why it is hard to understand them
  • Why are there so many interpretations to Paul’s letters in the New Testament?
  • When did Saul become Paul?
  • Paul’s conversion on the road to Damascus.
  • Scripture of the Day: Acts 9:1-9

Understanding the Empty Tomb

The tomb is empty on Easter morning.  Jesus is not there, for he has risen!  How do we interpret the meaning of the empty tomb?  How did those close to Jesus understand his resurrection?   In this Episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, we are going to dive into ways to interpret the resurrection of Jesus and the good news of the empty tomb.

Also in this Episode:

– How do Mary Magdalene, Peter, and the Beloved Disciple react to the empty tomb?
– How does Jesus reveal himself to his followers?
– John 20:1-2

20 Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.”

Lessons from the Cross

The Cross has been the symbol of Christianity for centuries.  What do we know about Crucifixion from the ancient world? How might these insights help us to understand Jesus’ death better?  In this episode of the Scripture and Spice Podcast, learn about Jesus’ death on the cross, and the political and religious implications.

Also in this Episode:

  • What typically happened to the bodies of those crucified?
  • What does archaeology teach us about the ancient practice of crucifixion?
  • What makes this specific crucifixion unusual for Pilate?
  • Scripture of the Day: Matthew 27:11-24

15 Now at the feast the governor was accustomed to release for the crowd any one prisoner whom they wanted. 16 And they had then a notorious prisoner called Barabbas. 17 So when they had gathered, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release for you: Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?”

 

Jesus in his Political Context

  • How do we reconcile the belief that Jesus is 100% divine and 100% human?
  • What was religious and political life like during the time of Jesus?
  • Who are the Pharisees, Saducees, and Essenes?
  • Why should we study the humanity of Jesus and consider the context of 1st century Palestine?

 

 

Messiah in the New Testament

Matthew 1 & 2, Luke 1 & 2

  • What does the term Christ mean?  Is it the last name of Jesus of Nazareth?
  • What is the difference between “Messiah” and “Christ?”
  • Cyrus as Messiah?
  • What does it mean to say that Jesus is the Christ?
  • What do the birth narratives in Matthew and Luke tell us about Jesus?

 

Messiah in the Old Testament

Isaiah 7:14, Micah 5:2, 2 Samuel 7

  • What does the biblical term “messiah” mean?
  • How does the faith community evolve in their understanding of messiah?
  • Does the Old Testament hint at or predict Jesus as Messiah?
  • How does the Old Testament shape our understanding of Christ?