How the Bible Became the Kynge’s Owne English

In the Beginning: The Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture Alister McGrath (New York: Doubleday, 2001) 340 pp., $24.95 (hardback) Wide as the Waters: The Story of the English Bible and the Revolution It Inspired Benson Bobrick (New York: Simon & Schuster, […]

How Pilate Became a Saint

Pontius Pilate has a terrible reputation. We tend to think of him as one of the New Testament’s greatest cowards. Tragically, at Jesus’ trial, Pilate seems to recognize that a gross injustice is being done, yet he doesn’t use his power as the Roman governor of Judea to stop it. According to the Gospel […]

The Dark Side of Pilate

Poor Pilate. If ever a man was caught unwittingly in the net of historical circumstance, it was Pilate. A simple Roman governor just doing his job, he could see that Jesus wasn’t the villain the Jewish crowd thought him to be. In the end, he washed his hands of the affair—tormented, it seems, by […]

Mel Gibson’s Passion Play

“His blood be on us and our children.” This single, chilling line from the Gospel of Matthew (27:25) has caused more bloodshed than any other verse in the Bible. Matthew’s invidious portrayal of “the Jews” clamoring for Jesus’ blood provided the impetus for centuries of anti-Semitism, pogroms, and the murder of six million Jews […]

Should Cheeseburgers Be Kosher?
A different interpretation of five Hebrew words By Jack M. Sasson

”You may not seethe a kid in its mother’s milk” is one of the Bible’s more puzzling interdictions. This short phrase—only five words in Hebrew (lo’ tebasûsûel gdi bahaleb ‘immo)—is repeated three times, once in Exodus 23:19, again in Exodus 34:26 and finally in Deuteronomy 14:21. Since Talmudic times, that is after 200 C.E., […]


Seeing God
God appears in a colorful spectrum of images in the Bible. By Mary Joan Winn Leith
From Hesed to Agape
What’s love got to do with it? By Ben Witherington III
The Annunciation