Brief Overview of Themes in the Four Gospels

Series with titles like “A Very Short Introduction” are very popular nowadays. This is an attempt to say a little about major themes in all four Gospels in the New Testament in about half an hour. It is skimpy but perhaps nevertheless useful for those approaching the Gospels for the first time. [Read more...]

Late Texts, Early Traditions continued: Thomases, Johns, and Marks

Here I am continuing some preliminary reflections related to my upcoming conference paper (which I began in an earlier post). My research interests which intersect with the methodological question I raised in my previous post, about the discerning of ancient traditions and of independent traditions in relatively late texts, seem to revolve around Johns and Thomases. [Read More...]

Lecture on the Interrelationships Between the Gospels

Here’s a recording of a class I taught, recapping the Synoptic problem and then looking at the distinctive features of the Gospel of John: [Read more...]

Textbooks and Commentaries on the Gospel of John

Regular readers and others who know me will know that I did my doctoral dissertation on the Christology of the Gospel of John. With my primary research focus having moved elsewhere, I am delighted when I get to teach my upper-level class on the Gospel of John and return my attention there. I’m still trying [Read More...]

Class on the Easter and Resurrection Accounts in the New Testament

A first attempt at using a digital whiteboard while recording a class – one that is freely available online at Scriblink.com, since the classroom I am in does not have a smartboard. [Read more...]

Not What John Had in Mind

A friend shared this on Facebook. I am not sure whether it is real or a spoof (I have seen kitchier Christian marketing gimmicks). But I am confident that it isn't what Revelation 7 had in mind – or John 4, for that matter.     [Read more...]

Is the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife a Fake?

Let me start with the news that Mark Goodacre shared a pdf of an article written by Francis Watson, arguing that the recently-found Coptic papyrus that has been dubbed the “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife” is a fake. He followed that up with a second shorter pdf on the forger’s alleged technique. Some are already pronouncing [Read More...]

Before The Bible Was Written

On Facebook I came across this funny depiction of what the first Christians had to resort to holding up at sporting events, before they had written texts they could reference: “Me 3:16″ – Nice one, John! But as someone involved in teaching Biblical studies, I also thought this was a nice reminder of a serious [Read More...]

The Life and Teaching of John the Baptist according to the Mandaean Book of John

Now that I have finished at least a still provisional but nevertheless complete translation of the chapters in the “Drasha d-Yahia” (which itself might be better rendered The Teaching of John rather than The Book of John) about the life and teaching of John the Baptist, I wanted to share links to them here. 18. Portents of [Read More...]

Anush-Uthra vs. Jesus: Smackdown in Jerusalem

I just posted another draft of a chapter from the Mandaean Book of John. In this chapter, chapter 76, there are a few places where the meaning of the text is not entirely clear (do I need to mention this when it is true of pretty much every section of every Mandaic text?). But the [Read More...]

Miriai is a Vine, a Tree that Stands at the Mouth of the Euphrates

I’ve just posted on the project blog a draft of my translation of chapter 35 of the Mandaean Book of John, the second and longer of the two chapters focused on the story of Miriai. While chapter 34 was relatively mundane by comparison (but still incredibly interesting, in my opinion!), chapter 35 is full of [Read More...]


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