Book Notice: James Dunn on the Acts of the Apostles

James D. G. Dunn The Acts of the Apostles Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2014 [1996]. Available at While there are several exhaustive multi-volume commentaries on the Acts of the Apostles, there is a certain strength to the brevity of any commentary that can do it in one volume, which James Dunn does in this [Read More…]

Why Social Progressives are Pro-Segregationalists When It Comes to Religion

Over at the Witherspoon Institute is a scintillating article by Steven Smith on Who’s on Which Side of the Lunch Counter? Civil Rights, Religious Accommodation, and the Challenges of Diversity. Here is the guts of his argument: In itself, the modern campaign for gay rights has been primarily inclusive in its aims. The goal has been [Read More…]

Christoph Heilig’s Article Review of Bruce Winter on Church and Empire

Over at Biblical and Early Christian Studies, Christoph Heilig has a review of Bruce Winter’s The First Christians’ Responses to Emperor Worship, which is a fine read and a good entree into NT and empire studies. Winter’s basic approach to research can both be regarded as giving rise to the strengths as well as the weaknesses, [Read More…]

God and the Faithfulness of Paul Ready for Pre-Order in Paperback

I’m very pleased that Fortress Press will publish a cheaper paperback version of God and the Faithfulness of Paul in March 2017 which is an amazing series of essays by an international cast of scholars evaluating N.T. Wright’s Paul and the Faithfulness of God.  Seriously, the essays by folks like Larry Hurtado, Jorg Frey, Eckhard Schnabel and others are [Read More…]

Book Notice: Discovering Genesis by Iain Provan

Iain Provan Discovering Genesis: Content, Interpretation, Reception Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2016. Available at By Lynsey Stepan Iain Provan’s Genesis commentary, Discovering Genesis: Content, Interpretation, Reception, addresses the difficult interpretive questions stemming from the narrative sections in an easy to understand format. Provan organizes his commentary by first laying out how Genesis has been [Read More…]

Was 2 Timothy written in Philippi?

I’m currently reading through Helmut Koester’s  History and Literature of Early Christianity, where I came across a new proposal on the provenance of 2 Timothy which I had never heard before. According to Koester, Paul’s second letter to Timothy – which he regards as pseudonymous – implies a Philippian provenance: The pastoral Epistles cannot be [Read More…]

Joel Willitts’ New Blog: Openhearted

My close friend Joel Willitts (North Park University) has launched a new blog called Openhearted: Following the Man of Sorrows on the Ancient Path of Lament. This is the place where Joel: writes stories that express the concreteness of a deep wound. The writing is a way to grieve what Evil has done in a [Read More…]

Rowan Williams – Mass Democracy Has Failed

Former Archbishop of Canterbury writes in NewStatesman on Mass Democracy Has Failed – It’s Time to Seek a Human Alternative. Williams laments that “Trump’s campaign succeeded in spite of the cast-iron demonstrations of his total indifference to truth (not to mention decency). It has offered not a connected strategy for national reconstruction, but an incoherent series of [Read More…]

Scott Rae’s Advice to Christian Communities Post-Obergefell

At the Evangelical Theological Society annual meeting in San Antonio, I had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Scott Rae (Talbot School of Theology, California) speak at the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary dinner about how to negotiate the future of the church in a post-Obergefell context. I like the four suggestions/exhortations he made:   1. Engage the [Read More…]

Latest Issue of Journal for the Study of Paul and His Letters (2016)

The latest issue of JSPL 6.1 (2016) includes some great articles: John K. Goodrich Until the Fullness of the Gentiles Comes In: A Critical Review of Recent Scholarship on the Salvation of “All Israel” (Romans 11:26). Charles Lee Irons The Object of the Law is Realized in Christ: Romans 10:4 and Paul’s Justification Teaching Jeffrey W. Aernie [Read More…]

Highlights from the 2016 ETS and SBL

Many highlights from ETS/IBR/SBL this year. I had a great time on a review panel engaging Tom McCall’s book An Invitation to Analytic Christian Theology. I was pleased to hear that Wayne Grudem and Bruce Ware have decided to embrace the eternal generation of the Son, which is a giant leap forward in finding common ground [Read More…]

Tim Wilson’s CIS Lecture on Religious Freedom

Australian MP Tim Wilson offers a great lecture on the topic of religious freedom at the Center for Independent Studies. [Read more…]

Explaining Donald Trump and “Evangelicals” to Australians

Just after the US election, I wrote a piece for a prominent Australian News Outlet called The Drum on Who are the Evangelicals Who Supported Trump? Basically trying to explain the different “types” of American evangelicals. For what it’s worth, I think Trump has played the evangelicals. Donald Trump has no record of professing faith. Although he identifies [Read More…]

Meet This Book: An Anomalous Jew

Over at Eerdword, I have a post introducing and explaining the rationale for my new book An Anomalous Jew: Paul among Jews, Greeks, and Romans (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2016). In sum, Paul was a socio-religious anomaly. He appeared on the scene of the Greco-Roman world like a sudden yet small ripple moving upon the waters [Read More…]

Christianity and the Untold Story of Slavery

Over at CPX is a great podcast on Christianity and the Untold Story of Slavery featuring interviews with Rowan Williams, David Bentley Hart, Iain Provan, and Baroness Caroline Cox. Truly amazing stuff, make sure you listen to it! It is from CPX’s forthcoming documentary For the Love of God: How the church is better and worse [Read More…]