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The Structure of the Olivet Discourse

The Olivet Discourse is one of the key teaching passages in the New Testament on eschatology. However, scholars show much disagreement in their interpretation of it. Was it entirely fulfilled with the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70? Or does its scope extend all the way to the second advent of Jesus? Read this paper and see where you think the evidence points.

This is a paper written by Ken Morgan. It attempts to reconstruct Jesus' entire discourse from the separate accounts in the Synoptic Gospels. The paper argues that Jesus describes two distinct events: the fall of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 and his own eschatological second advent.

A Brief History of the Kings of Israel and Judah

Do you find all those kings of Israel and Judah confusing? Do you doubt whether you will ever be able to learn this period of Israel's history? If so, then our paper on the kings is for you. It makes this absolutely exciting period in the history of God's people easy to understand.

This paper was written by Carol Morgan with footnotes supplied by Ken Morgan. The main text is a flowing narrative giving the history of Israel and Judah from the division of the kingdom to the fall of Jerusalem. The footnotes (over 300) deal with various technical, exegetical, chronological, and archeological problems associated with this period of history. There are also six appendices on subjects too long and involved for footnotes. For example, one of the appendices discusses the serious problem with the dates of Hezekiah's reign.

"A Comparison of the Three Millennial Views"

Do you know what is meant by the "millennial kingdom" or "Messianic kingdom"? What are the three different views in theology with regard to the millennium? How important is the doctrine of the millenium?

Original paper by Ken Morgan. Each view is defined, and a list of signs or events preceding the second advent according to each view are given. The paper closes with a summary of the central role played by Israel, the apple of God's eye and the nation written on the palms of his hands.

A Short Study on the Book of Revelation

In the tumultuous times in which we are living, it's not hard to imagine that the tribulation period may soon be upon us. Those times are described in the book of Revelation, and God has promised a special blessing for those who read it:

Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things that are written in it; for the time is near (Revelation 1:3).

Note: In Roman Catholic Bibles, the Book of Revelation is called The Apocalypse.

This paper assumes a futurist, premillennial interpretation of the book of Revelation and does not develop arguments for this approach or against alternative approaches. Nor is it a verse-by-verse commentary on Revelation. Instead this paper gives an overview of each chapter, its various visions and scenes, and compares the views of numerous prominant premillennial scholars. It is written by Carol Morgan with a supplementary discussion of chapter 17 by Ken Morgan.

Note that Chapter 22 contains two valuable appendices, the first on the "parousia" (coming) by Adolph Deissmann, and the second a very useful outline of the Book of Revlation by Cecil Yates Biss (an appendix to Tregelles, The Hope of Christ's Second Coming).

The Christian Answer to Death and The Eternal Destiny of the Redeemed

There is a popular Gospel song that begins with this line:

This world is not my home, I'm just passing through

The well-known hymn, "My Jesus, I Love Thee," has these lines:

In mansions of glory and endless delight
I'll ever adore thee in heaven so bright.

Many Gospel songs and hymns portray really bad theology. These two are examples. What is the final destiny of the redeemed? Is it heaven? Read this paper and find out.

This paper is written by Ken Morgan. It develops the answer of Christianity to death:

  • Why Christians, like everyone else, have the will to live
  • The "Unnaturalness" of death
  • The origin of death
  • Why believers die
  • The ultimate victory over death
  • The final destiny of the redeemed

How Much Did the Prophets Know?
1 Peter 1:10-12:
Early Jewish Exegesis and the Hermeneutical Crisis in Evangelicalism

We believe in the inspiration of the Old Testament: it is the word of God. But those words were written by human authors--Moses, David, Isaiah, etc. Did they understand their own message or did they write "better than they knew"? Is it valid to distinguish between the meaning intended by the OT author and the meaning intended by God? These questions come to a head in 1 Peter 1:10-12. Does Peter sanction such a distinction? I firmly believe the answer is no.

This paper (written by Ken Morgan) begins with a review of early Jewish literature and the methods of exegesis used in this literature to interpret the Old Testament during the era in which the New Testament was written. These methods include allegorical interpretation, rabbinical midrashic interpretation, and pesher interpretation practiced by the sectarians at Qumran (found in the Dead Sea Scrolls). Some Christian scholars argue that when the New Testament writers quote the Old Testament, they also employ these various methods of interpretation, all of which include the idea that the true meaning intended by God was hidden and not understood by the human authors, the prophets. I believe this is a serious error and argue the case in this paper. It has the following outline.

  • Jewish Scribal Periods and Literature
  • Jewish Hermeneutics in the First Century
  • The Interpretation of the Old Testament
  • The Interpretation of 1 Peter 1:10-12
  • The Apologetic Value of the Old Testament

"Write This Man Childless!"
The Crisis in the Davidic Dynasty and the Genealogies of Jesus

Did you ever wonder why the genealogies of Jesus in Matthew and Luke look so different? Or how Jesus had legal claim to the throne of David? If so, then take a look at this paper.

This is a paper written by Ken Morgan. It begins with the divine judgment on King Jehoiachin in Jeremiah 22:30 ("Write this man childless!") and the impact it had on the Davidic covenant. It then explains how these subjects affect the interpretation of the two genealogies of Jesus in Matthew and Luke. The difficulties of reconciling these genealogies are also discussed, and a solution is proposed.

A Complete Exegesis of the Historical Section of Daniel Chapter 11

Daniel was taken to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar in 605 B.C. in the first of three deportations. Bible-believing scholars believe that the Book of Daniel was written by this Daniel toward the end of his life, probably around 530 B.C. The many prophecies in the Book of Daniel are about events that were future to his point in time, some even to our point in time. However, many of them refer to events future to Daniel but that are part of history for us.

Chapter 11 is one of the most remarkable prophecies in the Old Testament. It predicts many detailed future events which find their fulfillment in the years from Cyrus the Great (558-529 B.C.) through the Maccabean revolt (165-164 B.C.) and all the way to the eschaton in the career of the Antichrist. Verses 2 through 35--that part of the chapter already fulfilled in history from our point of view--contain approximately 135 detailed prophetic predictions!

This three-part paper offers a verse-by-verse exegesis of verses 1-35, the historical portion of the chapter prior to the introduction of the Antichrist. These verses trace major kings and events from the Persian period to the Greek ruler, Antiochus IV (Epiphanes, 175-164 B.C.), and they represent one of the most remarkably detailed predictions in the Old Testament.

The New Testament Use of Geenna: Its Historical Background and Its Significance for the Doctrine of Eternal Punishment

Does the Bible, especially Jesus, actually teach that "terrible" doctrine of eternal punishment in hell? Historical Christianity has always answered in the affirmative. In fact, Jesus mentioned hell more times than he mentioned heaven. The Greek word geenna, Gehennah, is the primary word that is used for hell in the New Testament. It is a Greek transliteration of two Hebrew words meaning Valley of Hinnom. In the Old Testament, the Valley of Hinnom was an actual valley and terrible things happened in it. Read about them in this paper. Then read how this valley and the word geenna came to be used in the New Testament for the place of eternal punishment.

The sect known as Jehovah's Witnesses denies the doctrine of eternal punishment. This paper concludes with an analysis and refutation of their arguments as they center on the use of the word geenna. If you would like to be able to defend the historical Christian doctrine of eternal punishment the next time they come knocking on your door, read this paper.

  • The first section of this paper gives the Old Testament background on the Valley of Hinnom, where events took place that were an abomination in the eyes of Yahweh, the most heinous sins ever committed by Israel and Judah. It also discusses the question of whether the Old Testament itself refers to eternal punishment for the wicked.
  • Section two is a study of the period between the two Testaments. It was during this time that the important transition occurred in using the name Valley of Hinnom for the place of eternal punishment. Apocryphal, Apocalyptic, and later Rabbinic literature is reviewed because it forms the basis for the use of the word geenna in the New Testament.
  • The third section gives a detailed exegesis of key New Testament passages in which geenna is used, establishing beyond question that Jesus believed and taught the doctrine of the eternal punishment of the wicked.
  • The fourth and final section answers the arguments of the Watchtower against the doctrine of eternal punishment.

"The Centrality of Israel
In the Bible and In Theology"

The topic of the centrality of Israel in the Bible is perhaps one of the most important subjects in biblical and systematic theology today. This paper affirms and defends the central role played by ethnic, national Israel in God's plan of salvation for the world.

This critically important topic is also discussed at great length in my book, Upon This Rock: A New Look--Catholicism, Israel, and the Church.

This paper affirms that:

  • The nation of Israel, the apple of God's eye, is the center of his attention--past, present, and future.
  • The position taken here, and not the dispensational position, is the opposite end of the theological spectrum from replacement theology and amillennialism.
  • This view casts the nation of Israel as the center of God's redemptive plan to bring salvation to the world and as the agency through which it will be accomplished. Israel was the center of this plan during the Old Testament and will be its center during the millennial kingdom. The position taken in this paper brings into focus that same centrality during the interadvent period.

Also discussed is the relationship between Israel and the church, circumcision and baptism, and the Sabbath and Sunday.

"The Law of Moses in the Old and New Testaments:
Its Relationship to Believing Jews and Gentiles"

This paper discusses at some length the purpose and use of the Mosaic Law in both the Old and New Testaments. Was the Law given as a way of salvation? Has the Law been abrogated in the New Testament by Jesus as a result of his atoning sacrifice? Should Jewish believers keep the Law today (e.g., the feasts, circumcision, and the Sabbath)?

The role of the Law of Moses in the Old Testament is discussed at some length. But does the Law have any role in the New Testament? The following important verses are studied in detail: Leviticus 18:5; Deuteronomy 30:11-14; Romans 6:14, 9:30-10:13, and James' view of the Law in his epistle. Also discussed is the relationship Gentile believers have with the Law of Moses.

"The "Spirits in Prison"
An Analysis of
1 Peter 3:18-20"

The Greek scholar, A. T. Robertson, called this passage "the most disputed passage in the Epistle and almost in the New Testament." Problems exist in almost every phrase, and the opinions of the scholars have varied greatly. Who are these "spirits in prison"? Who preached to them? Where were they when this preaching occured? When did this preaching occur? These are the questions that are debated by the scholars. This paper gives an analysis that answers these questions.

This paper is divided into several sections: hermeneutical issues, a syntactical analysis of the text, and an interpretive analysis that presents the arguments for the view taken. It also discusses the various objections to this view and ends with a bibliography of the sources consulted in writing this paper.

In discussing the issues and arguments, there is considerable analysis of the Greek in which Peter wrote. However, the paper is written in such a way that a reader who has not studied Koine Greek can follow the arguments and conclusions without trouble.

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