Exegetical Theology

Dictionary.com & Etymonline.com

— see Exegesis —     also    — see Theology


Discussion/Explanation

It is all that explains and interprets the Holy Scriptures in the study of theology.

This area of study involves the study of ancient languages like Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic in order to study the Scriptures from primary sources – the original/early manuscripts of the Bible.

This also includes archeology and study of the canon of Scripture. Archeology in the study of ancient cultures and people surround the original writings. Canon in the study of the process involved in bringing the various books of the Bible together into the Bible as we know it today which was also against a historical background.

Exegetical theology therefore also includes criticism of the Scriptures and, by relation, the interpretation. This probably becomes obvious to you as you stop to think about what would be logically involved in the above-mentioned elements.

In the end, this is a very important branch of theology as it directly connects to historical theology in its studies and therefore directly impacts practical theology. Biblical theology becomes closely tied with the work carried out in exegesis such that it isn’t uncommon for people to argue biblical theology to be little more than part of exegetical theology (more on this later).


Source/Link for Additional Reading:

http://www.biblicalcyclopedia.com/E/exegetical-theology.html


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Baptism

What exactly is baptism?

Dictionary.com

noun
  1. Ecclesiasticala ceremonial immersion in water, or application of water, as an initiatory rite or sacrament of the Christian church.
  2. any similar ceremony or action of initiation, dedication, etc.
  3. a trying or purifying experience or initiation.

Etymonline.com

“initiatory sacrament of the Christian faith, consisting in immersion in or application of water by an authorized administrator,” c. 1300, bapteme, from Old French batesme, bapteme “baptism” (11c., Modern French baptême), from Latin baptismus, from Greek baptismos, noun of action from baptizein (see baptize). The -s- was restored in late 14c.

The signification, qualifications, and methods of administration have been much debated. Figurative sense “any ceremonial ablution as a sign of purification, dedication, etc.” is from late 14c. Old English used fulluht in this sense (John the Baptist was Iohannes se Fulluhtere).

Phrase baptism of fire “a soldier’s first experience of battle” (1857) translates French baptême de feu; the phrase originally was ecclesiastical Greek baptisma pyros and meant “the grace of the Holy Spirit as imparted through baptism;” later it was used of martyrdom, especially by burning.


Discussion/Explanation

As you can see, the term has had some variant use. Even so, the focus here is on what you see in definition #1 from dictionary.com.

Baptism, while it has initiate qualities, more specifically display death to one’s old self and rising anew as a believer in Jesus Christ. Practices surrounding this sacrament have varied throughout church history.

Of the various baptism varitions, each can be easily placed into one of two categories of baptism:

  1. Credobaptism
  2. Paedobaptism

Credotbaptism is the baptism of professing believers. It involves the public profession of faith from the believer accompanied with entire-body immersion in water. [cred- (latin) refers to a creed or profession; often called “believer’s baptism”]

  • The Baptists (hence the name) are some of the most well-known connected to this practice.
  • The water immersion could take place in a river, lake, pool, etc. Some Christian traditions will only baptize in running water (usually a river).

Paedobaptism is the baptism done upon infants or young children. This could include immersion, dunking, or sprinkling with water. [paed- comes from Greek pais which means “child”]

  • Entire households are considered to be part of the Covenant of Grace if the parents are believers. Therefore, it is the parent’s belief that is looked to instead of the Child’s belief.
  • Baptism is considered the sign of the covenant just as circumcision was the sign of covenant found in the Old Testament.
  • For variations on paedobaptism (current & historical), see the list within the Paedobaptist post.

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Heaven

What is meant by the terms 1st Heaven, 2nd Heaven, and 3rd Heaven?

Let’s start by defining Heaven:

Dictionary.com

noun

  1. the abode of God, the angels, and the spirits of the righteous after death; the place or state of existence of the blessed after the mortal life.
  2. (initial capital letter) Often Heavens. the celestial powers; God.
  3. a metonym for God: May heaven help us!
  4. heavens, (used with a singular verb) a wooden roof or canopy over the outer stage of an Elizabethan theater.
  5. Usually heavens. the sky, firmament, or expanse of space surrounding the earth.
  6. a place or state of supreme happiness: She made his life a heaven on earth.

Interjection

heavens, (used to express emphasis, surprise, etc.):
For heaven’s sake! Good heavens!

Idioms

move heaven and earth, to do one’s utmost to effect an end; make a supreme effort:
She promised to move heaven and earth to be there for our wedding anniversary.


Etymonline.com

Old English heofon “home of God,” earlier “the visible sky, firmament,” probably from Proto-Germanic *hibin, dissimilated from *himin– (cognates Low German heben, Old Norse himinn, Gothic himins, Old Frisian himul, Dutch hemel, German Himmel “heaven, sky”), which is of uncertain origin. Perhaps literally “a covering,” from a PIE root *kem- “to cover” (also proposed as the source of chemise). Watkins derives it elaborately from PIE *ak- “sharp” via *akman- “stone, sharp stone,” then “stony vault of heaven.”

From late 14c. as “a heavenly place; a state of bliss.” Plural use in sense of “sky” probably is from Ptolemaic theory of space as composed of many spheres, but it also formerly was used in the same sense as the singular in Biblical language, as a translation of Hebrew plural shamayim. Heaven-sent (adj.) attested from the 1640s.


You may be able to guess what these different numbers refer based on the above information already but let’s make them clear now.

1st Heaven – the sky or, at least, the sky that includes planet Earth’s atmosphere. This is not to include stars or other celestial bodies.

2nd Heaven – outer space. To be clear, this is everything beyond earth. This includes all of the void of space, the planets in it, stars and more.

3rd Heaven – in the presence of God in His domain; commonly referred to as God’s home. This is the heaven most often referred to in Scripture and Christian circles – especially when speaking of life after death.

2 Corinthians 12:2 is probably the most well-known text that prompts people to ask this question as the various translations will word it as “third heaven”.

As you can see, each heaven is something different. Their commonality is in that they’re all considered above us. The third heaven is too considered above us as hell is below us. Obviously, heaven and hell are not places we have the power to physically visit by our own power; there is an even greater sense of beyond-ness to them as compared to our known physical universe (which includes the first two heavens).


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Mothers

Today’s Mother’s Day!

A time that we remember and appreciate the women in our lives that we call “mom”.

(I would include the biological as well as non-biological women who have filled the calling we call mom.)

Today’s post will be short as I have just this simple message:

Mother's Day

Show the mothers in your life that you care about them and what they do!


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