Peter J. Leithart is President of the Theopolis Institute, Birmingham, Alabama, and an adjunct Senior Fellow at New St. Andrews College. He is author, most recently, of Gratitude: An Intellectual History (Baylor).

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Geography of Elijah and Elisha

From Leithart

Why does Yahweh send two prophets to the Omrides? Two witnesses no doubt. But their ministries are so similar in many respects; why double it? And what, if any, are the differences between them? One difference is geography. Elijah spends a good bit of the narrative on the far side of the Jordan. He . . . . Continue Reading »

Jehoram and Elisha

From Leithart

The history of the Omrides during the ministry of Elisha takes a curious turn. Instead of confronting the king with his sin, as Elijah generally did, Elisha instead repeatedly gives assistance to the son of Ahab (2 Kings 3; 6-7). Jehoram wavers, sometimes whining, sometimes hostile to Elisha, . . . . Continue Reading »

New Joseph

From Leithart

Dothan is mentioned in only two places in the Old Testament: Gen 37, at the beginning of the Joseph narrative, and 2 Kings 6, the place where the Aramean king attempts to find Elisha. Jacob sends Joseph to take food to his brothers, and he initially does not find them at Shechem where he expected . . . . Continue Reading »

Things that are not

From Leithart

Jacques Ellul helpfully points out that God frightens away the Arameans in 2 Kings 7 by a mere sound, and it is a sound that has no physical cause. God overcomes things that are, Ellul says, through things that are not. . . . . Continue Reading »

Food in 1-2 Kings

From Leithart

A critical issue throughout 1-2 Kings is the question of who provides bread. Early on, it’s Solomon, whose table overflows with good things and who rules an Israel that is continuously rejoicing and feasting. Kings continue to supply tables after the division of the kingdom, but they are . . . . Continue Reading »

Puns in 2 Kings 7

From Leithart

Iain Provan points to two entertaining puns in the story of the siege of Samaria in 2 Kings 6-7. The first puns on “lepers” (Heb. MISORAIM) and “Egypt” (Heb. MIZRAIM): The Arameans become frightened by the sound of an army, thinkin that Egyptians are attacking; it’s . . . . Continue Reading »

Blood and life

From Leithart

In his recent Concordia commentary on Leviticus, John Kleinig gives a good summary of what I think is the best explanation of the blood prohibtiion of Lev 17: “many animists regard blood as the most potent of all ritual substances. The blood of an animal was either drunk or, more commonly, . . . . Continue Reading »

Uh, oh, they’re on to us

From Leithart

In the course of a screed of breathtaking condescension against large families, religion, and conservatism, SFGate.com columnist Mark Morford inadvertently stumbles upon an insight: “Why does this sort of bizarre hyperbreeding only seem to afflict antiseptic megareligious families from the . . . . Continue Reading »

Father of Joy

From Leithart

The following thoughts came largely from a PCA minister from Virginia with whom I enjoyed a recent, stimulating conversation. The Triune fellowship is a fellowship of eternal infinite joy. The Father delights in His beloved Son, and eternally pours out the abundance of His Spirit on Him. The Son . . . . Continue Reading »

Constantine

From Leithart

Keanu Reeves seems incapable of playing anything but a Christ figure (remember his supersonic ascension at the end of Matrix 1). In the recent horror film, Constantine , he plays John Constantine (J.C. – get it?), an agnostic, chain-smoking suicide restored to life to work as a free-lance . . . . Continue Reading »