I have a Masters of Divinity (MDiv) - Biblical Studies w/ emphasis on the Old Testament.
I have an educational ministry - Fig Tree Ministries (www.figtreeteaching.com) - with a mission to help people understand Biblical studies (rather than Theological studies). The focus of the ministry is understanding the culture of the ancient Near East, Judaism, Israel, Roman Empire, and how the words of the Bible speak into that culture.
When I first became a Christian I began attending a Messianic Synagogue and discovered the importance of understanding the cultural context of the New Testament. That has been my focus ever since. So much of the "meaning" of the New Testament isn't explicitly written but would be understood through the cultural nuances in either Israel (the Gospels) or the Roman Empire (Paul's epistles).
My other passion is spiritual growth (called Spiritual Formation in Seminary speak). I would encourage everyone to work with a spiritual coach. You cannot understand the magnitude of spiritual growth unless you've actually experienced it. One of the most important aspects of spiritual growth is forgiveness. Christians tend to focus on the forgiveness from God of our sins but there is just as much emphasis in the text on the ability to forgive others.
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