Every Wednesday we post intellectually honest, culturally sensitive, spiritually relevant, curiously hospitable, scholarly rigorous short videos that are produced to address the burning questions of your soul.
Who really was Jesus and why do I care?
The Bible, really? Isn’t it rife with errors?
Is God dead?
Please don’t tell me that I sin.
Why do bad things happen if God is good?
I thought Christians were supposed to love everyone.
Doesn’t science tell me everything I need to know?
Why do I feel anxious and lonely?
Excerpted and augmented from 40 plus years of trial lawyer Mark Lanier’s teaching efforts, these videos aren’t your preacher’s rhetoric. Honest and authentic, these videos strive to be truthful about what we can know and can’t know as the Creator is revealing himself today and back ‘then’. We can’t wait for you to consider the evidence and the argument. We look forward to what your brain reconciles.
All you have to do is ask!
Feel welcome. Stay with us. We love you. We are as interested in the truth as you are!
One of the strange facts about the modern church is that, for many who think of themselves as ‘Bible Christians’, the Bible itself is almost a closed book. Sure, they know about Noah’s Ark and Jonah’s Whale; they probably know that there are four Gospels in the New Testament and that Paul wrote some dense and difficult letters . . . but they may not ‘get’ the larger message of the Bible as a whole, or see how its many different parts relate to that greater unity.
Mark Lanier’s project of ‘Biblical Literacy’ addresses this problem in a highly attractive and engaging manner. Mark combines his own lifelong love of the Bible and its historical and archaeological context with his lawyer’s passion for putting together the ‘big picture’ and the little details and presenting it in an attractive, vibrant and highly relevant fashion. I have been privileged to visit Mark and see him in action on a number of occasions, including one time with his remarkable class. I suspect that those who attend his sessions have no idea just how lucky they are. His whole project is a flagship of its kind, an amazing gift to the Christian people of Houston and a sign of hope for the larger church.
I first met Mark almost 20 years ago. Right away I could tell he was a unique legal talent and this talent has grown exponentially since then. Mark combines a photographic memory, ability to communicate complicated concepts in the simplest of terms, remarkable knowledge of history and psychology into what the legal community annually calls him “America’s best trial lawyer”. In addition,and maybe more importantly, Mark is a dedicated family man, loyal friend and a spiritual inspiration to all of those lucky enough to be in his sphere of influence. I am proud to call him my friend and colleague.
I was raised in a traditional Jewish household-meaning we were cultural Jews who observed the High Holidays but were otherwise non-religious. I was drawn to Mark’s class because of his commitment, enthusiasm, knowledge and approach to Christianity. We did not study the New Testament, let alone any of its contents. I began attending the Biblical Literacy study when Mark was still teaching from the Old Testament. I was hooked. Since that time I have been a regular attendee whether in person or watching on line. I have become a better man, better father, better friend and better person having studied with Mark. He is a true man of G-d and a blessing to me.
In 2005, my 27 year old son Jake died as a result of a senseless accident. Having been a part of reformed Christian religions all my life, the grief, the hole in my heart, demanded to know whether the rhetoric I had grown up with concerning Jesus, resurrection, and a loving God were real. A friend suggested I attend a Sunday school class in my area taught by a lawyer. I am not sure now why I even consented going. Trained as a scientist, I certainly wanted knowledge that welcomed questions and thinking as important if I was going to count on words from ancient documents revered as scripture.
I had no idea what my friend’s suggestion would provide. Bringing the special kind of legal mind that Mark has, combined with a working knowledge of Biblical languages and the honest desire to get at the truth, Biblical Literacy hits head on the veracity of Christina scripture. My science can consider some of the sexiest questions about life origins and life elsewhere in the universe, but only Scripture and God as our creator, can answer why it matters that we spend time on this planet. It continues to astound me how my Father in Heaven provides for me, Biblical Literacy ranks up there in the proof.
As a former NFL and College coach, I learned very quickly the importance of a “Great Game Plan”. Without it, you can not and will not play well. It changes every week, based on your opponent, but remains true to the “Playbook”! The Biblical Literacy class is the “Great Game Plan” that changes every week, but always remains true to “The Playbook”, the BIBLE! The B-L class helps to prepare me each week to play the game of life better than my opponents!!!