Bible History

Many Catholics are aware that Jesus “opened the gates of heaven” and allowed the righteous dead to go there. The Catechism even says it: CCC 637 In his human soul united to his divine person, the dead Christ went down to the realm of the dead. He opened heaven’s gates for the just who had […]

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The Gospel reading for the Second Sunday of Lent commemorates the mysterious event known as the Transfiguration. This event is hard to understand. Why did it happen? What did it mean? Here are 10 things you need to know.   1. What does the word “transfiguration” mean? The word “transfiguration” comes from the Latin roots trans- […]

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Spanking is quite controversial in some quarters. Some people speak of it as if it is tantamount to child abuse. Other say, that they were spanked as children, that it didn’t do any long-term harm, and that it actually did them good. So I was interested to see Pope Francis’s remarks on spanking in a […]

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This Sunday is the first Sunday of Lent, and we read about events that occurred at the very beginning of Jesus’ ministry. Following his baptism, Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness—his own, personal equivalent of Lent. It was a time of preparation for the beginning of his public preaching in Galilee. Here are 9 […]

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Scholars are frequently forced to play detective to determine when an ancient book was written. Ancient books did not have copyright dates neatly printed on a page at the front of the book. Frequently, they did not contain any explicit reference to the year in which they were written. As a result, scholars have to […]

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Just a quick note on the reliability of the Gospels. I’ve written before about the fact that the Evangelists did not feel free to simply make stuff up about Jesus. One of the signs of that is the fact that, despite the fact that St. Paul’s letters were extremely influential in the early Church and […]

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St. Luke records that when Jesus was born an angel of the Lord directed a group of shepherds to go find him. Luke introduces this group of shepherds by saying: And in that region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night [Luke 2:8]. This has led to a […]

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Was Jesus really born on December 25th? You’ll find strong opinions on both sides of this question, with some saying definitely yes and some saying definitely no. I don’t have strong feelings on this question. Although the Church today liturgically celebrates the birth of Our Lord on December 25th, whether this is the exact date […]

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Recently I blogged about the common apologetics claim that the dates of Christmas and the Annunciation were based on the idea that Jesus lived to an “integral age.” In other words, that Jesus died on the anniversary of his birth or conception. According to some authors, it was popularly believed among ancient Jews that prophets […]

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Why do we celebrate Christmas on December 25th? Why is the Annunciation on March 25th? According to some authors, it’s due to something called the “integral age” view that was common among ancient Jews. But this idea itself might be a myth. Here are 9 things to know and share . . . BE SURE […]

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