Pre-Event Listening:

Podcast - Resource Link
Listen to this great explanation of how to make sense of violent depiction of God in the OT by Bruxy Cavey.  This podcast does a great job of simplifying the different ways Christians try and make sense of violence ordered by God in the Old Testament. Please share this if you found it helpful. 

Theological Study Day – Booklet:

TSD Booklet Cover
Booklet PDF


This year’s Theological Study Day is an amazing opportunity for us to meet, learn and discuss together some of the key areas of our faith, values and the realities we face. Challenging ourselves and learning from one another while we wrestle with living out what God is doing through us and trying to become more like Jesus.

Violent God? Peaceful God? Interpreting violent portrayals of God for a skeptical world.

As Anabaptist we anchor ourselves in the peace teachings of Jesus. However, some other theological traditions subtly emphasize wrathful, angry, and punitive behaviours in both Testaments as part of God’s character and divine action. The skeptical world looks at Christianity with doubts—questioning the goodness of a God who uses violence to accomplish his purposes.

Register now to join over 150 BIC Pastors and church leaders on May 6th (@ The Meeting House, Oakville, ON) for a daylong exploration of how to interpret violent portrayals of God in the Old and New Testaments. Our mission is clear—know Christ and make him known! Our Theological Study Day will prepare you to help a skeptical world better understand the goodness and love of Christ in the ancient text.

The full day will include table conversations, Q + A, practical applications, and excellent teaching.

Schedule and Presenters:

Dr. Derek Suderman

Dr. Derek Suderman

Professor of Religious Studies & Theolgical Studies at Conrad Grebel University College.

Dr. Derek Suderman, Professor of Religious Studies and Theolgical Studies at Conrad Grebel University College. Dr. Suderman will walk us through how to interpret and use OT violent portrayals of God in the Old Testament for pastoral ministry and evangelism.

Dr. Mark Baker

Dr. Mark Baker

Professor of Mission and Theology at Fresno Biblical Seminary

Dr. Mark Baker, Professor of Mission and Theology at Fresno Biblical Seminary and author of Recovering the Scandal of the Cross: Atonement in New Testament and Contemporary Contexts. Dr. Baker will equip us to understand non-violent atonement theology for pastoral ministry, discipleship, and evangelism.

Eric Seibert & Derek Suderman - Dinner & Debate: Joshua's Genocide

Eric Seibert & Derek Suderman - Dinner & Debate: Joshua's Genocide

Professor of Old Testament at Messiah College & Professor of Religious Studies & Theological Studies at Conrad Grebel University College.

Joshua’s Genocide: A Debate Between OT Scholars on How to Read Violent Portrayals of God Non-Violently. Eric Seibert, Professor of OT at Messiah College and author of Disturbing Divine Behaviour: Troubling Old Testament Images of God, and Derek Suderman. Derek and Eric will be debating two very different views on how to interpret the very troubling story of the Canaanite conquest in Joshua.

Additional References:

An article by Mark Baker on the question: What is Happening on the Cross?

An overview review of Mark Baker’s book on the non-violent atonement—take-two/

Theme related articles:
“Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God” – by Brian Zahnd

“How Does Dying for Our Sins Work?” – By Brian Zahnd

Interviews related to the theme:
Anabaptist theologian and author Brad Jersak is interviewed about non-violent atonement and different views of atonement from the historical Christian tradition.