‘Son of God’– The Burnett and Downey Version

It is extraordinarily difficult to know how to evaluate a film like 'Son of God', offered quick on the heels of last spring's successful series by Burnett and Downey on 'the Bible' (the Reader's Digest version of a sort). Do we evaluate it against the original stories in the four canonical Gospels? Do we evaluate it against other films about Jesus? Do we assess it on its own merits, but that is difficult to do since it is based on such a crucial and iconic story? Shall we evaluate it in terms … [Read more...]

Joni Mitchell– An Interview for the Ages

This is a wonderful, long, very revealing interview done with one of the great artists of any sort of music or visual art of the last 70 or so years. I was fortunate enough to see her live in concert in about 1972 or 73 just after her Blue album came out, now considered a classic, and the concert was frankly ethereal, angelic, and unforgettable. Enjoy. BW3 … [Read more...]

I’d really Dig a Camel about Now!

There is a recent archaeological report about camels, or the lack thereof in the Holy Land. John Noble Wilford of the NY Times has a recent article about the findings which can be found here----http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/11/science/camels-had-no-business-in-genesis.html?ref=science&_r=0" title="Camels". The findings include the deduction that because evidence has not yet been found for camels in the Holy Land prior to 1,000 B.C. therefore they likely were not part of the economy in … [Read more...]

Ephesian Miracle— The Sixth Art West Adventure

https://wipfandstock.com/store/Ephesian_Miracle_The_Sixth_Art_West_AdventureJust when you thought things couldn't get any more lively for Art West, he goes to Turkey to get married and all kinds of mayhem breaks loose. What is the difference between miracle and magic, and how does that difference make a difference in the life of Marissa, Art's new bride? And did they really discover the bones of Mary in Ephesus? If so those bodily assumption traditions may turn out to be based on false … [Read more...]

Sherlock– The Game’s Occasionally Afoot

It is an interesting phenomenon to have two very different presentations of Arthur Conan Doyle's classic detective, Sherlock Holmes, and his trusty sidekick John Watson on the telly at the same time. This is only possible really because one is a BBC production which gets farmed to the U.S. a season late by way of PBS, and one is the brainchild or the brain trust at CBS. When you throw in Robert Downey Jr's. movie Sherlocks the visual arts are virtually buzzing with Sherlock possibilities. … [Read more...]

Wright’s Paul and the Faithfulness of God– Part Twelve

Much of chapter five is spent demonstrating the evidence for and growth of the Imperial Cult during the first century A.D. Of this there is no lack of evidence. What we cannot directly tell from the archaeological remains is the effect this specific cult had on the mentality of Jews and Christians living in the Roman Empire. We know of course of the repugnance felt about what Jews and Christians called idolatry of any and all sorts. We also hear the lament of Plutarch that 'nowadays Olympus … [Read more...]

Wright’s Paul and the Faithfulness of God– Part Eleven

In the wake of recent Imperial cult studies, including studies of the evidence that the NT reflects a critique of the Imperial cult (as Tom likes to put it--- Jesus is Lord, and Caesar is not, the latter being the parody of which Christ is the reality), Chapter Five is in some ways the most crucial chapter thus far in Tom's first volume. It is a pity that Tom's book went to press shortly before the appearance of Jesus is Lord, Caesar is Not (eds. McKnight and Modica, IVP 2013), as it would be … [Read more...]

Wright’s Paul and the Faithfulness of God– Part Ten

In Chapter 4 (pp. 246-78) we have a very useful survey of what has come to be called ancient Greek and Roman religion (not to be confused with philosophy which was treated in the previous chapter). Wright is correct to stress that ancient religion was all about praxis, and very little about beliefs or believing, nor was it much about ethics either. The essence of pagan religion was priests, temples, sacrifices, festivals, calendars, auspices and the like. On this showing early Christianity … [Read more...]

Into India— Part Fourteen

The very first site Jason and I went to see upon arriving in Delhi was the brand new much publicized Hindu temple (built from 2005 to the present, to the cost of millions and millions) named Akshardham.... You are not allowed to take pictures inside the temple area, so I had to resort to taking pictures of pictures, except for this one distance shot, taken on a foggy morning.Here' what it looks like at night (taken from an advertizing sign at the huge Delhi airport...Once again we … [Read more...]