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    • If you don’t want to talk about the current crisis, what do you want to talk about?

      Science is still doing its thing: from NASA space exploration to new cures for cancer, there’s news to share and chat about. (H/t to @RussP)

      US politics. Joe Biden refuses to call for delay of tomorrow’s primary elections. Is he now complicit with Trump for any deaths caused? Politicians are voicing the need to file crimes against humanity charges in The Hague against Donald J. Trump. Do you think it’s warranted?

      Books. Anyone have good recommendations to share? Has anyone tried a virtual book club on Zoom?

      Breakups. Yes, it is a topic, although I hate to think what a Dear John letter would feel like today. Yikes!

      Entertainment. I just started watching the Amazon Primr series Carnival Row and Dead Like Me. So far so good. Whatcha been watchin’?

      Nutrition and Cooking. I’ve been doing a lot more cooking lately and am hitting a wall with the same old same old. Any suggestions on something new to try? (Tagging @peach @lidja @amacbean16 @gorudy)

      TED and self-improvement. Tell me about a video that inspired you.

      Writing. Last I checked, April is NaNoWriMo. Is this your first attempt or have you successfully completed a novel in prior years.

    • Books. Anyone have good recommendations to share?

      I just read Jane Harper’s The Lost Man.
      (
      Goodreads rating: 4.19) It is set in the Australian Outback. “Dark, suspenseful, and deeply atmospheric” is an accurate description. Hard to put down.

    • Tons happening in the sports world. NBA in limbo, NFL start date uncertain, and tennis is up-in-the-air with Wimbledon being canceled. But moving away from COVID-19, basketball players are entering the NBA Draft, college athletes are choosing schools, etc.

    • I think what I’ve found is even though the world appears to have come to a stand still, lots still happening around us. You can’t stop science and innovation, right?

    • I’d love to know more about what’s happening in the professional sports world. (I imagine college sports is just sort of at a standstill—although I think I heard the NCAA has decided to extend eligibility for a year...?)

    • When I study with someone for the first time, I have them tell me what things in the Bible have aroused questions in their mind or has puzzled them and we go from there. If there is anything that puzzles you, let me know and we'll discuss that.

      If the person doesn't have anything that comes to their mind, I begin discussing with them the sixteen major time periods of Bible History and the transitional events which ended one time period and began another, but I also encourage the person to interrupt at any point in case this discussion triggers a question that they had forgotten but which has puzzled them.

      This, of course, works better in a conversational setting rather than in a written format but if you don't have any subjects to initiate that is one option.

      Another option is a discussion of key event in the life of Jesus.

      Whatever interests you is what I would want to discuss. My purpose is to help you be a better student of the content of the Bible.

    • I begin discussing with them the sixteen major time periods of Bible History and the transitional events which ended one time period and began another

      Would it be possible for you to start with a time period at or near the middle of the history timeline? I’m thinking it might elicit questions from myself and others that would lead to teaching of prior or later periods to provide context and clarity.

      But you’re the teacher here and I will leave it up to your judgment on what would be the best curriculum and sequence. I think for myself, I find history interesting; awhile ago you shared an article on several figures in the Bible for whom there where archaeological records. Also, I found interesting when you provided interpretation of passages that were often misunderstood; or when you shared instances where you yourself gained greater understanding of a passage through further research.

    • we can talk about breakups

      Peach, I think a lot of folks on here would appreciate such a conversation: it’s a universal truth that breakups ain’t easy.

      If you’d be willing to start such a conversation, click the blue + sign in the top right corner of your screen.

      <><><>

      This is a mournful song written by Sarah Bareilles about her first big breakup.


    • @StephenL

      I plan to start a new Cake conversation later today on the major time periods but I want to explain why I plan to start at the beginning.

      I have developed the impression over the years that many people have a very disorganized understanding of the events of the Bible.

      Many years ago, I heard a man suggest that many people's understanding of Bible events is like a disorganized pile of clothing with each individual item being analogous to one of the events of the Bible.

      Prior to that time, I had been trying to teach the Bible for over a decade from what I now call a bottom up approach. I focused on the individual events of the Bible and the intended lessons from each event but didn't think too much about whether others had as much of a grasp of the timeline as I did.

      For about 25 years, I have been teaching a top down approach to the history of the Bible. This method requires a lot of patience on the part of the teacher. Interestingly, the New Testament emphasizes a teacher's patience. Examples include 2 Timothy 2:23-26; Ephesians 4:1-3; Philippians 2:1-5 and other passages.

      I have developed a model for teaching most Bible events which usually involves 3 element but when there is a messianic aspect to the event that becomes a fourth element.

      The first element is Context. This includes the events that led up to the event, the geography of the event, the culture of the event, etc.

      The second element is the Original reason that the event was recorded. There are many events that took place in Bible times which are not recorded.

      The third element is the discussion of what extrapolations from the event are legitimate and which extrapolations are the product of the reader's agenda or desire.

      However, in order to teach the first element it is needful that the one who is being taught have referents. These referents are only effective if a solid foundation of what has previously happened is understood and are more effective if the student also has a general understanding of what the consequences are.

      For example, 2 Chronicles 18:1 is only truly grasped if one is aware of 2 Chronicles 22:10-11.

      Ahab, who was married to Jezebel, had a daughter named Athaliah. Jehoshaphat in order to establish an alliance with Ahab arranged that his son, Jehoram of Judah, married Athaliah. The eventual result was that almost the entire house of David was slaughtered. There are other passages that are relevant to a discussion of what the writer intends to convey in the narrative but the purpose of this post is simply to use these two events to illustrate the point of the element of context.

      If our conversation persists for an extended period of time, we will probably fulfill the desire which you expressed in your latest post, but unless there is a specific event that is puzzling you or a question you have, I will start with the first period of Bible history.

      By the way, I try to avoid scholarly words. Scholars refer to the first major time period by the polysyllabic "antediluvian." I use the phrase "Before the flood." The word and the phrase mean the same thing but my purpose is communication rather than obfuscation.