mugshot of Carl

Welcome to the Bible Study Man website where I hope we can learn together what The Bible has to teach us. My aim is to bring this amazing book alive in a fresh and interesting (sometimes challenging) way!

I have divided the site into four key sections detailed below. Feel free to explore and if there’s anything you can’t find or understand - get in touch!

Carl Nielsen, January 2018

The Four Main Sections

1. Online Teaching Sessions

Do you reckon I’ve learnt anything by reading The Bible from-cover-to-cover many times over several years?

I certainly hope I have! I also learnt from my time wrestling with clinical depression. What I’ve come to call The Nielsen Creed has it’s roots in that time:

God is God.

God is Good.

I am His.

And He is mine.

I unpack this and other subjects in this growing library of video and audio sessions.

2. Dramatic Bible Readings

Have you noticed that people often read The Bible without emotion?

There’ll be none of that here! If you read the texts it is sometimes clear that the speaker is angry or sad, other times not so much. For example was Peter saying “If YOU say so...” or “IF you SAY so...” in Luke 5:5? We don't know but I feel that a little conjecture can help throw some light, providing we know we’re guessing!

So these are my best guess (sometimes one of several ‘best’ guesses) intended to ring the changes and bring The Bible to life with full-on ’snot-and-tears’ readings. I doubt my interpretation accurately reflects the mood or emotional tone of the original, but I think it’s an interesting alternative to the usual formal reading style.

3. Bible Reading Plan

Have you ever tried to read The Bible from cover to cover?

If not and you’d like to, then this day-by-day plan I devised will help you to read the entire Bible in one year. It takes less than half an hour a day (even if you’re a slow reader like me!)

The plan is based on four traditional sections - The Law (Torah or Pentateuch); The Prophets (Neviim); The Writings or Poetry (Ktuviim) and The New Testament.

As a sample, today’s bits to read are first, from Genesis Chapter 30:1 to 30:24. Follow that by reading from Judges Chapter 20:26 to 20:48. The third chunk is from 1 Chronicles Chapter 28:20 to 29:13; and lastly from Mark Chapter 1:1 to 1:22. Enjoy!

4. The Bible

Do you know the difference between ‘God’, ‘ The Lord’ (as opposed to ‘The Lord’) & ‘God Almighty’?

No? neither do I! Well that's a bit strong; what I mean is, it's not obvious which relates to the original words for God; and the differences are interesting. I’m more clued up about ‘elohim’ - the closest to our English ‘god’; ‘Adonai’ - ‘The Lord’; ‘YAHWEH’ - The name of God (the one that’s often rendered ‘The Lord’ with the small caps) which I am rendering TheIAM. Or the four different words for love in the Greek texts that transform the traditional readings.

I wanted a translation that brought these interesting differences to light but couldn’t find anything that worked for me. The interlinear texts which seemed so promising to begin with turned out to be way too clumsy to actually use on a daily basis it seemed to me; I don’t know the Hebrew or Greek alphabets - let alone the languages. Anyway I discovered there was a public domain modern English translation and realised I could build it myself from that... Easier said than done!

So what I have is a minor adaptation of the World English Bible which includes nuanced meanings of particular ancient words for placenames, for God and others of special interest. This is a growing list and I welcome any suggestions for investigation and possible inclusion.