The Love Commandment in the New Testament– Part One


It may seem odd, but despite the prominence of commandments to love in the NT, which can also be found in the OT, there have actually not been that many scholarly monographs written on the subject. We could point to the seminal work of C. Spicq, a French scholar, whose mammoth study was finally translated into English, or the classic little book by V.P. Furnish entitled The Love Commandment in the New Testament but scholars have been surprisingly reticent to address this topic in detail, and I … [Read more...]

The Edinburgh Adventure– Part Five

2013-08-24 21.34.14

My wife and I are big fans of the Impressionists. In my view, art went mostly downhill in the 20th century after that period. What I had forgotten about the Scottish National Gallery is that it has a nice Impressionist wing with Cezanne, Gaugin, Degas, Monet, Van Gogh... you get the picture. Well.... you will in a minute.This is a lesser known Van Gogh painting of cherry trees in the Spring...On the much more famous side, we have the Monet haystacks....And here is a … [Read more...]

The Edinburgh Adventure– Part Four

2013-08-24 21.45.47

Scotland is a land of wild beauty, and even wilder food. Here is a fine painting of the Highlands by a Scottish artist...It's a brave man that takes a pub up on the offer of the following culinary item....It's one thing to eat sheep's innards. It's another to be charge $16 for the privilege!And just when you thought you were going to focus on Scottish artists in the Scottish part of the museum, the stairwells are full of Greeks and Romans busts. I'll let you guess who … [Read more...]

The Edinburgh Adventure– Part Three

2013-08-24 21.57.33

When one thinks of Scotland, one quite readily may think of this....or perhaps this...But perhaps you would not associate Edinburgh with fine art... though it has one of the best small museum collections of religious paintings in Europe. For example, did you know you could find a famous el Greco here....Or a very colorful painting of the stoning of Stephen?This painter must have thought Stephen was stoned by the fashion police for wearing flash clothes! But … [Read more...]

The Edinburgh Adventure– Part Two


The Scottish Museum of Art in Edinburgh is absolutely full of remarkable religious art. In the next few posts we will be sharing some of it. Above is a remarkable painting that is an allegory about the OT and NT. Here below is the description of the painting...I have always loved the art of Hans Holbein (see above), who is perhaps most famous for a painting of Henry the VIII which looks so real it could be a photo.Here is a remarkable painting of an ordination service in Scotland. … [Read more...]

Oh Baby!


Some countries think that there is a limit to stupidity run riot when it comes to naming one's children. In fact, New Zealand has done something about such brain dead decisions. You have to run the name of your new born by a government registry in Kiwi land. If only this had existed in America when I was growing up with a girl named 'Candy Apple' and another named 'Merry Christmas' (I am not kidding). Such parents should be immediately deported to New Zealand, and their children should be … [Read more...]

The Edinburgh Adventure– Part One

2013-08-24 15.30.00

Traveling by train to Edinburgh is both fun and easy. It takes only about two hours from Durham and you pass through Newcastle, Berwick, Dunbar and then to Waverley Station Edinburgh. Easy Peasy. My mission was to catch up with two NT friends and colleagues--- Helen Bond and Larry Hurtado who are both at New College Edinburgh. I was asked to come and give a lecture to their seminar..... and it went well. Afterwards we went to Howies for lunch, with some traditional Scots cuisine--- I had … [Read more...]

Iron Man Three— Lots to See


Watching movies in Durham England is a different kind of experience. For one thing, you have assigned seats. None of that first come first served thing. For another, the theaters are small. This time I was in Theater One which has exactly eight rows of 23 seats each in it, and a huge screen. I saw the film in 3D, but frankly it wasn't worth it. 2D would have been fine at 7.50 (that's pounds not dollars).The ratings of this film by the critics have been very good indeed (93% … [Read more...]

The Durham Chronicles– Mud Slide Ben and the Leg Boggling Experience


So I am back from Cyprus and Turkey and getting back into the old routines. Of course while I was gone it rained in Durham more than the entire year's annual rainfall for Cyprus. Anyway, I am minding my own business running on the path on the far side of the Wear river when suddenly--- zounds and gad zooks, I had a Sherlockian experience. Think Hound of the Baskersville. I suddenly step into a mud bog.... and looked like this..I was quite literally up to my thighs in deep, thick … [Read more...]