Invitation to the NT— the Reviews Start Rolling In

Here is Dr. Nijay Gupta's review of my NT Introduction for Oxford....Witherington’s Invitation to the New Testament (Review)July 19, 2013 9:58 am /Recent months and years have seen the production of some fine introductions to the New Testament (Powell, Boring, Hagner). Perhaps one that did not make it on the radar of many folks is Ben Witherington’s Oxford University Press textbook entitled Invitation to the New Testament: First Things (2013).I think this text is aptly tit … [Read more...]

Irish Diplomacy

The following saying was found on an Irish coffee mug----"Diplomacy is the art of telling a person they are going to hell in such a fashion that they look forward to the journey." … [Read more...]

Monsters University— A Diploma in Scary

It is axiomatic that monsters are supposed to be scary. They are not supposed to be cute, cuddly, adorable, and the like. But now the truth can be revealed. Monsters are not inherently scary--- they have to go to college to become scary! Who knew!! In the long awaited sequel to Monsters Inc. Disney Pixar has once again given us a children's tale that adults can enjoy as well, especially if the adults were never 'in with the in crowd' when they went to college.By now the formula for … [Read more...]

The Rankin Chronicles—Beggar’s Banquet

Short stories are, or tend to be, what they say they are. The narrative arc is shorter, plot and character development is svelte, and you get to the climax a lot quicker. Interestingly enough, some writers, who are excellent short story writers (think O. Henry) are not much good at the novel, and vice versa. This cannot be said of Ian Rankin. In fact, as the Introduction to Beggar's Banquet makes clear enough, Rankin began his writing career by writing short stories, including award winning … [Read more...]

The Relationship of Doing and Being in the NT

One of the major thrusts of my two volume work entitled The Indelible Image was showing the inherent, and necessary, connection between theology and ethics, between belief and behavior, between being and doing, in the Bible and in particular in the NT. I went on to stress the importance of the concept of the image of God as a connecting point between being and doing, belief and behavior, theology and ethics. By this I meant that we are all created in God's image and we are meant to reflect … [Read more...]

42— More than Just a Number

"Robinson's a Methodist,""I'm a Methodist,""God's a Methodist, what could go wrong?"This is the famous retort of Branch Rickey (played rather well by Harrison Ford) to a query by one of Rickey's underlings who suggested there would be big trouble if Rickey insisted on breaking the color barrier in 1947 in the Big Leagues.The movie '42' has been out for some while now, and is in its second run in the discount theaters, and no doubt will already be on Netflix, and then DVD. As … [Read more...]

Elementary my dear Watcher

Hands down, the best new series on American TV this past season was Elementary. Indeed, it was so good, the Brits picked it up immediately. Johnnie Lee Miller has become an instant star, and Lucy Lieu and Aidan Quinn already ones. Now that the some 24 episode season has come to a dramatic end, and the DVD will be out in a month, it's time to take stock of what just happened and what makes such a show work.First of all, one of the things that makes this show work is that, unlike Sherlock … [Read more...]

Plane Movies— Hitchcock and Hyde Park on the Hudson

There is not a lot to do for eight hours on that sardine can known as an airplane, unless you choose to: 1) eat several bad meals; 2) bring your own entertainment; 3) bring a small child, in which case entertainment is the least of your worries, or 4) watch some of the small screen films on the small screen in the back of the head rest in front of you. I chose 4), and was actually pleasantly surprised, more so with Hitchcock, than with Hyde Park on the Hudson. In regard to the latter, Bill … [Read more...]

The Rankin Files: Standing in Another Man’s Grave

First of all let's clear up the title..... the line from the song which is actually the source of this title is 'standing in another man's rain', which is easy to do in Scotland, believe me. Just when you thought John Rebus was done and dusted, put out to pasture, or any other cliche you may have for retirement, Rebus is called out of retirement to deal with some cold cases. These are cold cases about what is called MisPers--- Missing Persons, in this case all of them young women. The thing … [Read more...]