Antievolutionism in the Classroom and around the Blogosphere

My freshman “Faith, Doubt and Reason” class yesterday took an unexpected turn, as a discussion of Paul Tillich’s treatment of symbols in his Dynamics of Faith raised the issue of whether faith is necessary in the natural sciences, which led some students (the vast majority, at least of those who spoke) to express a “lack [Read More...]

Epic Storytelling from the Bible to Star Wars

While searching for a recording of “O Fortuna” from Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana I came across this video which brings together scenes from across the various six Star Wars films to that musical accompaniment, connecting the early and later in a pretty effective way. The look on Obi Wan Kenobi’s face in the first Star [Read More...]

Shai Held on Reading the Bible Selectively and Morally

Darrell Pursiful shared excerpts from and a link to an article by Shai Held on the use of the Bible in Judaism. The same points could be made for any religious tradition with a sacred text of key importance. Here’s a sample: The world is not divided between those who read selectively and those who [Read More...]

Liberal Christianity – An Affirmation

Mike Bird offered a caricature of Liberal Christianity which it would be wrong to dismiss out of hand. The trends and pitfalls that he highlights on the liberal end of the spectrum are real dangers. The churches which were so flexible and so in tune with the social norms of their time that they had [Read More...]

The Signs Gospel and Mythicism

The blog Synoptic Solutions, at the end of a post on the tradition history of the story about the stilling of the storm, shared these thoughts relevant to the topic of mythicism, which I thought deserve attention and discussion: He most closely resembles one of the tannaim, the rabbinic scholars and holy men of the [Read More...]

Review of Mark S. Smith, God in Translation

I am grateful to Eerdmans for sending me a free review copy of Mark S. Smith’s book God in Translation: Deities in Cross-Cultural Discourse in the Biblical World (published by Eerdmans in 2010, originally published in 2008 by Mohr Siebeck). The book looks at a relatively neglected aspect of ancient Israelite, early Jewish and early [Read More...]

The Eerdmans Dictionary of Early Judaism

I am grateful to Eerdmans for sending me a free review copy of The Eerdmans Dictionary of Early Judaism. A dictionary is particularly hard to review, and so no futile attempt will be made here to do justice to the full range of contents and contributors. Among those most directly related to my research interests [Read More...]

Good vs. Evil, Indignation vs. Indigestion

Imagine three situations that come up in real life: 1) You are made aware in the local news that lives were lost in a fire that could have been prevented if a recent safety inspection had been as thorough as it ought to have been. 2) You read on a blog about human trafficking in [Read More...]


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