Welcome to the repository of articles published by The Reality Institute of Advanced Jesus Studies (TRI).
TRI and the churches which have been the incubators for all these articles were the places for the development of Christology and Christological formulations. None of these articles may be divorced from the churches where the authors fellowship, but, rather, are integrally related to each. The Reality Institute is a private research facility and school located in Kansas City, and which acquired this site and all of its articles in 2018.
This site is a repository of Biblical research with some blog-like features, such as comment sections (though comments are generally turned off). It is a collection of articles or article-ideas under development related to Jesus, field research conducted in Israel at Megiddo and Tel Gezer, historic, systematic, biblical and practical theology, and interpretive and textual matters including the Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic manuscripts (and cognate languages such as Ugaritic and Egyptian) related to the Bible… and all of this in the context of a local church.
The articles generally fit within the range of Martin Luther’s 1518 Heidelberg Disputation, the biblical-theological writings of Geerhardus Vos, Meredith G. Kline and Greg K. Beale and the basic hermeneutic that is called redemptive-historical and covenantal.
We have a keen interest in 2nd Temple Judaism, but we do not endorse the constant tendency to pit historical studies against reformational protestant theology, and we strongly affirm the doctrine of Justification as historically understood by reformation theologians. We confess the orthodox creeds of Christianity and we find that European skepticism and liberal Americanism result in a kind of thinking that is arrogantly and uncritically critical of most Biblical doctrines.
This blog was started on June, 6th, 2007 as a place to report from the field on research conducted in the second season of the new Tel Gezer expedition in Israel — hence the name. There is one article with a date that pre-dates the start of this blog (it was added with a time-stamp to reflect when it was written, not when it was posted here).
We publish articles for the same reason that we worship. Our chief aim is to exalt Christ — to glorify the Trinity — and enjoy God forever by loving what he loves. Jesus loves his bride, and he laid down his life for the church. As an expression of our passion for the church, we primarily publish these articles for the edification of the saints at Christ Fellowship of Springfield in order to bring clarity to the teaching (especially as we speak and sing the gospel to one another).
How we maintain and update the research on this site comes in three parts: by God’s Spirit, by His Word and by His church. The churches where these articles were written have been committed to pastoral training, fostering the pursuit of archaeology and PhD studies that will enrich the ministry of the Word in the church. Such research is done for the sake of the church, by the church, in the context of the church. Indeed, without the church, such work would have no energy behind it. Therefore, it is by the Spirit of Christ that we do this, for his people, and it is by Him that we are motivated to see into the resurrection (even in the midst an evil age and through waves of suffering). That is how we are able to lisp even a single word of praise for Christ. And how is it that we know the words to lisp? It is by his Word, the Bible. To that end, and by deep conviction, we reject all theories that subvert the Scriptures, including higher criticism and the documentary hypothesis. In contrast we unequivocally affirm the inerrancy of Scripture and the the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy.