Podcast Episode

What Is God's Name? Feat. Dr. Michael Heiser

Dr. Michael Heiser from the Naked Bible Podcast joins us in this week's God episode.

Episode 13
Oct 15, 2018
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Show Notes

This is a special episode in our series exploring the portrayal of God as a character in the Bible!

In this episode, Tim and Jon host a friend of the Bible Project’s, Dr. Michael Heiser. Dr Heiser is a Ph.D. in Hebrew studies from the University of Wisconsin. He’s a well-published author whose work has been mentioned on this podcast before. He also runs his own podcast called “The Naked Bible Podcast”.

In part 1 (0-18:05), the guys begin to talk about God’s “name”. This is a motif that is found throughout Scripture. Tim says that the Old Testament well primes the observant reader to expect an incarnation of God. The guys zero in on the commandment to not take God’s name in vain. “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord God in vain.” What does this actually mean? Is it about cussing or something more? Dr. Heiser says the commandment is much more significant than most modern readers think.

Tim shares a quote from Gerhard Von Rad’s Old Testament Theology. “The name Yahweh was committed in trust to Israel alone among the nations… In it alone lay the guarantee of Yahweh’s nearness and of his readiness to help… This name shared directly in Yahweh’s own holiness, for indeed it was, so to speak, a double of his being. And so it had to be treated as holy in the very heart of Israel’s worship, to 'call on the name of Yahweh' was equivalent to true worship.” -- Gerhard Von Rad, Old Testament Theology, Vol. 1, p. 183.

Dr. Heiser says that to represent someone’s name is a big deal. He says that to “not take the name in vain” would be better translated to, “do not misrepresent the name."

In part 2 (18:05- 33:00), the guys dive into more stories of God’s name. Dr. Heiser makes a point that God incarnating happens repeatedly in the Old Testament, so it was expected that God would incarnate in the New Testament as the Messiah. Heiser says the question for an ancient Hebrew was not, "Is it possible for God to incarnate in a human?" but rather, "Is Jesus the chosen one whom God has incarnated in?"

The guys zero in on some stories of the Angel of the Lord in the Old Testament. Dr. Heiser says that in the Exodus 23, the Angel has God’s name “in him”. Then in Joshua 5, “the ruler of the Lord’s army” or “captain of the hosts of the Lord” appears to Joshua. Joshua is told to remove his shoes, for the ground is holy. This is the same language that appears in the story of Moses and the burning bush. In the burning bush story, it is the angel that is in the bush. Dr. Heiser says this is the same figure in all the stories. The angel is both an angel and Yahweh, yet is distinct from Yahweh.

In part 3 (33:00-44:30) Tim and Dr. Heiser continue to make the point that God was known to incarnate in physical form. Dr. Heiser references Dr. Alan Segal, saying that ancient Judaism had a duality in it. God could be both Yahweh and distinct from Yahweh.

Tim refers to Jesus’ brothers who didn’t believe Jesus was the Son of God when he was alive, but after his resurrection they did. Tim and Dr. Heiser also refer to John 17. Dr. Heiser says that when Jesus claims to have “manifested God’s name” he is claiming in other words, “He who has seen me has seen the Father.” Jesus is the one who carried the name faithfully, doing the job Israel was supposed to. Tim says the claim being made in John 17 is behind the whole universe being in unity, a community of eternal love.

In part 4 (44:30-end) The guys talk about the “name” or the “mark” of the beast in the book of Revelation. Dr. Heiser says this is also much more significant than modern readers realize. To carry the name of the beast means to have a willful alignment with evil.

Jon comments that he still feels a little confused. “The name” of God operates so complexly. Dr. Heiser says this is intentional and that there is a whole “matrix of ideas” in the Bible. A key to reading the Bible well is to understand how the vocabulary used in the Bible all interconnects.

Watch our God video here: https://bit.ly/2CycuKe.

Show Resources:

"Old Testament Theology" Vol. 1, p. 183. by Gerhard von Rad

"The Genius of John: A Composition-Critical Commentary on the Fourth Gospel" by Peter Ellis

"The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible" by Michael Heiser

"Angels: What the Bible Really Says about God's Heavenly Hosts" by Michael Heiser

Show Music:

Defender Instrumental by Tents; Faith by Tae the Producer; In the Distance by Tae the Producer; Moments by Tae the Producer

Show Produced by:

Dan Gummel. Jon Collins.

Scripture References
John 1:14
Revelation 13
Exodus 32-34
Joshua 5:13-15
John 14:9
2 Peter 1:4
Philippians 3:20-21
Exodus 23:20-23
Exodus 20:7
John 17
Deuteronomy 12:5
Psalms 20:1-2
2 Timothy 2:19
Numbers 22:21-39
1 Chronicles 21
Judges 2
Genesis 19
Jude 1:4-5
Matthew 22:32
John 7:5
1 John 3:1-3
Revelation 2:12-17

22 Episodes

Episode 22
God Series Recap
Welcome to our recap episode on the God series!
1hr 2m • Jan 7, 2019
Episode 21
The Trinity and God's Identity
Welcome to the final episode in our series on God! Today Tim and Jon discuss the Christian doctrine of the Trinity.
55m • Dec 17, 2018
Episode 20
Jesus' Identity in John's Gospel
Tim and Jon dive into the Gospel of John and how it portrays the relationship between God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.
51m • Dec 10, 2018
Episode 19
Jesus and God's Spirit
Tim and Jon dive into Paul’s understanding of God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
37m • Dec 3, 2018
Episode 18
Who Did Paul Think Jesus Was?
This episode continues our series on God as a character in the Bible. Today Tim and Jon dive into the writings of Paul in the New Testament.
38m • Nov 19, 2018
Episode 17
God Q+R 3: Questions About Jesus' Identity
In the third Q+R in our God series, Tim and Jon answer seven questions from our audience.
53m • Nov 12, 2018
Episode 16
Who Did Jesus Think He Was?
Tim & Jon dive deeper into the portrayal of Jesus as a character in the New Testament. They ask the big question: Just who did Jesus think he was?
53m • Nov 5, 2018
Episode 15
Is Jesus God?
Today Tim and Jon dive deep into the story of Jesus of Nazareth.
56m • Oct 29, 2018
Episode 14
Who Is the "Son of Man?"
In this episode, Tim and Jon finally (finally!) begin to talk about Jesus.
53m • Oct 22, 2018
Episode 13
What Is God's Name? Feat. Dr. Michael Heiser
Dr. Michael Heiser from the Naked Bible Podcast joins us in this week's God episode.
59m • Oct 15, 2018
Episode 12
God, Abraham, Demons, and Giants Q+R
This is our third Q+R in our God series. Thank you to everyone who sent in questions! Tim and Jon discussed four.
1hr 1m • Oct 8, 2018
Episode 11
God’s Word, Spirit, and Wisdom
Tim and Jon have part two of their conversation on God’s attributes used as a character. They discuss God’s Spirit, God’s wisdom, and God’s word.
1hr 8m • Oct 1, 2018
Episode 10
God's Name Is a Character
Tim and Jon zoom in on a confusing part of the Bible: God’s attributes. Specifically, God’s name, glory, word, spirit, and wisdom. Here, Tim and Jon will be covering the first two, God’s name and his glory or "*kavod*."
34m • Sep 24, 2018
Episode 9
The Angel of the Lord
Today Tim and Jon sit down and discuss Angels. Specifically “The Angel of the Lord.”
38m • Sep 17, 2018
Episode 8
God Q+R 2 - Live!
This is our 100th podcast episode!
47m • Sep 10, 2018
Episode 7
God's Fusion With Humanity
This episode continues our series on the development of the character of God in the Bible.
1hr • Sep 3, 2018
Episode 6
Experiencing God Through Humans
This episode continues our series on the development of the character of God in the Bible. Jon and Tim tackle how God portrays himself in and through humans in the Bible.
50m • Aug 27, 2018
Episode 5
God Q+R 1
This is our first, full Q+R episode for our God podcast series. Enjoy!
1hr 21m • Aug 20, 2018
Episode 4
Origin of Spiritual Beings and a Mini Q+R
This is a unique episode of our podcast. Tim and Jon originally sat down to have a Q+R on the first three episodes in our God series. But Tim shared that before he responded to questions, he wanted to give some updates about new things he’s been learning pertaining to the conversation on God.
1hr 8m • Aug 13, 2018
Episode 3
Spiritual Warfare
In this episode, Tim and Jon walk through the big ideas of the divine council and spiritual warfare.
1hr 12m • Jul 30, 2018
Episode 2
No Other God
Tim and Jon continue discussing the character and theme development of God in the Bible.
37m • Jul 23, 2018
Episode 1
God or gods?
Tim and Jon introduce the problems with the term "god."
1hr 8m • Jul 16, 2018
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