Biblical Research & Education Resources

 Richard Blaine Robison, M.A., M.R.E.

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Bible Insights

Besekh (New Testament)

So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones, and of the household of God, being built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Messiah Yeshua himself being the chief cornerstone. (Eph 2:19-20 HNV)

About this Section

This section of the website provides topical articles and exegetical commentary on portions of the New Testament or Besekh (a term I coined to be comparable to Tanakh). These resources are especially devoted to exploring the Jewish roots of the Besekh and the Christian faith. See my article My Journey into Jewish Roots. Little recognized by Christians is that the Besekh is a Jewish book, written by Jews, largely about Jews, and meant for both Jews and Gentiles. Recognizing the inherent Hebraic nature of the apostolic writings will assure a greater understanding of Scripture. Readers will note the consistent use of "Yeshua" instead of "Jesus" in order to emphasize that the Savior of the world was a Jew born into a Jewish family, given the Hebrew name Yeshua by his parents and lived as an observant Jew in the land of Israel.

Have a question on the Bible not answered by website materials? Send to brer@blainerobison.com.

Biblical Studies

The Jewish New Testament

Abstract: The New Testament is essentially Jewish, and does not reflect Christianity as it developed under the church fathers. Only by understanding the Jewish culture, character and composition of the apostolic writings can they be properly understood and interpreted. (10 pp.)

A Name for the Apostolic Writings

Abstract: This article explains my rationale for coining and using the acronym "Besekh" in lieu of "New Testament."

The So-Called Synoptic Problem

Abstract: Matthew, Mark and Luke are called the Synoptic Narratives because they contain considerable material in common, but there are also striking differences. Scholars have suggested various solutions to explain this phenomenon. Which one is right? (3 pp.)

Witnesses of the Good News

Abstract: This article provides an overview of each of the historical narratives of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The article explains the background of the authors, date of writing, the purpose and message, and unique content. Consideration of this information is very helpful for interpreting content. (19 pp.)

Bible Commentary

All commentary on Scripture incorporates verse-by-verse exegesis, with explanation of word meaning and the Jewish cultural context, interpretation of the significance of the text, and application to life. See my Commentary Writing Philosophy.

Besorot (Good News)

Matthew

Chap.1  |  2  | 5  |  6  |  7  |  23 |  24 |  25

Sermon on the Mount Discussion-Study Questions

Olivet Discourse Discussion-Study Questions

Mark

Chap. 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6  |  7  |  8  |  9  |  10  | 11  |  12  13  |  14  |  15  |  16

Additional Notes on Mark

● 13:14, A Rebuilt Temple (2 pp.)

● 13:19-20, Targets of the Tribulation (2 pp.)

● 14:3, The Anointing of Yeshua (2 pp.)

Luke

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3:23 | 10 | 19 | 21

John

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9  | 10  | 11  | 12  | 13 |  14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21

Acts

Introduction to Acts

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 (in progress)

Sepherim (Letters)

Romans

Introduction to Romans

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16

Corinthians

Introduction to First Corinthians

Introduction to Second Corinthians

1Corinthians 1 | 5 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15

Galatians

Introduction to Galatians

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 (in progress)

Colossians  1  |  2  |  3  |  4

2 Thessalonians 2

Titus  1

Hebrews

Introduction to Hebrews

Chap. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 (in progress)

Jacob ("James")

Introduction to Jacob

1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5

Peter

General Introduction
First Peter Introduction

Second Peter Introduction

1Peter 12 (in progress)

2Peter 1 | 2 (in progress)

Judah ("Jude")

Introduction  |  1

Chazoth (Visions)

Revelation of John

Preface | Author-Date | Composition |  Interpretation | Message | Structure | A Hebrew Book | A Book of Visions | A Book of Seven

Chap. 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6  |  7  |  8  |  9  |  10  |  11  |  12  |  13  |  14  |  15  |  16  |  17  |  18  |  19  |  20  |  21  |  22

Biblical Calendar

God's Appointed Times

Abstract: Scripture identifies a number of special days to be observed by God's people. Christianity rejected this calendar in lieu of a very different calendar. Yet, God's calendar should not be dismissed since Yeshua lived by this calendar and it will be followed in the millennial kingdom. (8 pp.)

The Message of Hanukkah

Abstract: This article explores the historical setting of Hanukkah, its connection with the life and ministry of Yeshua, and its value for Christian observance. (5 pp.)

Remember the Sabbath

Abstract: Many Christians believe that Yeshua created the Lord's Day as a substitute for the Jewish Sabbath and that the apostles canceled observance of the seventh day rest. What does Scripture actually say, and what is God's will for our use of time? (6 pp.)

General Resources

Abbreviations of Bible Versions

These are standard abbreviations used in scholarly works. Most Bible translations and versions can be accessed on the Internet.

Recommended Books

Click on this link for my recommended list of books that help you better understand Scripture and provide guidance on marriage, pastoral care and counseling, and prayer.

The Five Jewish Laws

This is a graphic presentation of the good news about having a spiritual relationship with God especially designed for Jewish persons.

General Abbreviations

Literary and grammatical abbreviations used in articles and commentaries. Also, abbreviations of the books of the Bible.

Greek Texts and Translation

The article explains the basic approaches to translation reflected in major Bible versions and the background of the various New Testament Greek texts.

The New Testament in Hebrew

Abstract: This article offers background information on the four Hebrew versions of the Besekh now available. They are invaluable for study. (3 pp.)

A Short Guide to Greek Grammar

The article explains the meaning of grammatical abbreviations used in biblical commentary, as well as a pronunciation guide for New Testament Greek.

Talmud Tractate Abbreviations

These are standard abbreviations used in scholarly works.

Bible Personalities

The Apostle from Tarsus

Abstract: An overview of Paul's life from birth to death and his apostolic ministry. (13 pp.)

The Defamation Against Zacchaeus

Abstract: For centuries Bible expositors have treated Zacchaeus as a virtual criminal, guilty of all manner of offenses. A close examination of the evidence yields a very different picture. (9 pp.)

Miriam of Magdala

Abstract: Contrary to wide-spread Christian belief, Miriam was not a rescued social derelict, but a good woman set free to serve Yeshua as a faithful disciple. (6 pp.)

Simon Peter: Fisherman-Apostle

Abstract: This article provides a historical review of the life and ministry of a preeminent leader in the Body of Messiah during the apostolic era.

Pauline Studies

Perspectives on Paul

Abstract: The historic Christian view of Paul is that he was a legalistic Jew who abandoned Judaism and converted to Christianity. In modern times many scholars have come to recognize Paul as a Messianic Pharisee and a Torah-observant emissary of the Jewish Messiah. Who is Paul to you? (5 pp.)

The Correspondence of Paul

Abstract: An introduction to Paul's letter writing and summary of each letter. (34 pp.)

The Guidance of Paul

Abstract: This article defends apostolic authority against the charge of cultural influence and reviews the instruction of Paul for disciples in a variety of ethical, moral and practical topics. (23 pp.)

The Theology of Paul

Abstract: A review of key theological themes in the messages and writings of the apostle.(16 pp.)

Law vs. Legalism

Abstract: Many Christians have misinterpreted Paul's negative use of "under law" and "works of law" to effectively nullify obedience to God's commandments. These phrases actually refer to legalism. In the New Testament legalism is not doing good works to earn salvation, but the misuse of Law as an oppressive system. (9 pp.)

Yeshua Studies

The Birth of Yeshua

Abstract: The preponderance of the evidence points to a birth in the fall (probably September) of 3 BC, with the Magi arriving in December 2 BC. A PowerPoint slide presentation (32 slides). See also the commentary on Matthew 1 & 2 and Luke 1 & 2 and 3:23.

Did Yeshua Cancel Torah Food Laws?

Abstract: Christians typically assume that Yeshua canceled the Torah rules concerning "unclean" animals. The text shows that the actual issue was eating with unwashed hands, not the menu. (7 pp.)

The Final Days of Yeshua

Abstract: This article is a chronology of Yeshua's final days on earth leading to his crucifixion, resurrection and finally ascension to heaven. (4 pp.)

The Last Supper of Yeshua

Abstract: When the narratives of the Last Supper in Matthew, Mark and Luke are compared with John's narrative there appears to be a conflict of chronology and identification of the meal. This article demonstrates how the narratives are complementary. (10 pp.)

The Nativity Story

Abstract: This article is the telling of the Nativity narrative of Yeshua the Messiah exclusively from the words of the New Testament, and presented according to the actual chronology of events. (7 pp. PDF)

Prophecies of the Messiah

Abstract: This is a straightforward list of predictions of the Messiah found in the Tanakh. (5 pp.)

Who is Yeshua?

Abstract: This article surveys the identity of Yeshua as presented in the Besekh, and explains the meaning of his titles of Messiah, Son of God, Son of Man and Lord. (9 pp.)

Topical Studies

The Apostolic Community

Abstract: Christian scholars have generally assumed that congregations in the apostolic era were mostly Gentile in membership. However, linguistic evidence supports the thesis that these communities of believers had a mostly Jewish constituency. (15 pp.)

The Circumcision Controversy

Abstract: Adult circumcision was a major source of conflict among disciples in the apostolic era. At a conference in Jerusalem the apostles declared that circumcision was not essential to salvation. (6 pp.)

Hellenism and the Jews

Abstract: This article describes the impact of Hellenistic culture on Jews and the frequent mention of Hellenistic Jews in the apostolic writings, though not recognized in Christian Bible versions. (8 pp.)

Jewish Jurisprudence

Abstract: This article describes the three levels of the Jewish court system in the first century, which is valuable for understanding Yeshua's trial. (4 pp.)

The Messianic Meal

Abstract: Yeshua gave Paul a revelation of a ceremony for disciples to conduct, referred to as the Lord's Supper (1Cor 11:20, 23), to fulfill his command given at the last supper (Luke 22:19). The meaning and practice of the Lord's Supper has changed in the course of history, but its observance remains an important part of discipleship. (11 pp.)

The Messianic Seal

Abstract: An increasingly popular symbol among Evangelical Christians is the Messianic Seal, also known as the grafted-in symbol. Yet, those who display the symbol may not realize its early use by disciples in the Jerusalem congregation. (2 pp.)

The Original Gospel

Abstract: This article summarizes the nature of the apostolic proclamation of the good news of God's grace and salvation through the atonement of Yeshua and presented in a form appropriate to the audience, whether Jew or Gentile. (4 pp.)

The Vineyard Parables of Yeshua

Abstract: A PowerPoint presentation on the four parables Yeshua told featuring a vineyard. (PDF, 15 pp.) See also Study Questions for personal or group use.

Who Were the Samaritans?

Abstract: The Samaritans have a special place in the record of Yeshua's ministry. While commonly viewed as Gentiles or non-Jews, the evidence indicates the Samaritans were Jewish. (4 pp.)

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