Butler, Baker, Candlestick Maker?

I was surprised to find that someone found their way to my blog by searching for “butler, baker and the candlestick maker in the bible“. It led them here. Do you think they found what they were looking for? [Read more...]

Review of The Lost World of Genesis One, Part Three

Proposition three is that the Hebrew verb bara’ has a functional focus. Walton starts off by emphasizing that reading the Bible in English is really of no help whatsoever. The issue is not what the English word “create” means, but what the Hebrew word that is usually translated that was in Genesis 1 means. No [Read More...]

Biblioblog Top 50, August 2009

The Biblioblog Top 50 for this past month has been posted. It isn’t fair really – there are still a few hours for West Coast bloggers to get their rankings up. Ah, well. Jim West hung onto first place using the same method as in previous months: a dozen short posts on total depravity each [Read More...]

Back to (Sunday) School

This summer, the pastor of my church has been conducting a series on Baptist basics, and so my own Sunday school class has been merged in with that one. Today was the last day, and next week I’ll be back to teaching Sunday school again. We discussed a few options. One was to return to [Read More...]

Science Fiction and Fantasy Research Database

I recently had drawn to my attention a very useful online database of academic treatments of science fiction and/or fantasy. There’s a lot on religion (my own main interest), but also much much more. [Read more...]

Review of The Lost World of Genesis One, Part Two

The second proposition or chapter in Walton’s recent book The Lost World of Genesis One emphasizes the functional orientation of ancient cosmology. Walton begins by asking what it means for something to “exist”, and in the process he illustrates how existence in numerous cases is not about material or material existence. Curricula may exist in [Read More...]

Around the Blogosphere

There have been lots of posts this weekend that ought not to be missed. First, Mark Vernon has an insightful and provocative post on Christian agnosticism. Elsewhere there’s a great analogy that gives a sense of what the Gospel might have sounded like to its earliest hearers. Funnily enough, Mark Goodacre has a podcast on [Read More...]

Outsmarted by the Unintelligent

Humans are arguably the most intelligent beings on the planet (the fact that we can act in spectacularly unintelligent ways at times notwithstanding). We have been and continue to be devoted to “outsmarting” diseases. And yet we find it challenging. The reason is not in serious dispute. It is evolution. Were it not for the [Read More...]

Jesus Seminar Videos

I poked around YouTube for videos featuring scholars and historians talking about the historical Jesus, and the following are two of the more interesting/useful ones I came across: Marcus Borg talking about the color-coded ranking system used by the Jesus Seminar, and highlighting which elements of both the popular and dominant scholarly view of Jesus [Read More...]

Describing Religion and Science Fiction

In addition to teaching my Historical Jesus class for the first time this semester, I also plan to work on the course description for the new course on religion and science fiction that I’ll be teaching in the Spring. The gist of it will be something along the following lines: This course will explore and [Read More...]

Classes Have Started!

Classes have begun. Today is the first day of classes at Butler. I’m teaching two sections of Bible on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. [Read more...]

New Plagiarism Tutorial

After linking to the plagiarism tutorial on the Butler University library web site, I learned that they have just introduced a brand new tutorial in video format. Take a look! [Read more...]

Review of The Lost World Of Genesis One, Part One

John H. Walton’s book The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2009) has deservedly been getting significant amounts of attention. It combines a committment to the authority of Scripture with a direct and pointed challenge to a very popular way of viewing the Bible and its [Read More...]

If You’re Determined To Plagiarize

A message to students at the start of a new academic year: If you are determined to plagiarize, at least have the courtesy to do so as early as possible in the semester. Plagiarism is a heinous act of intellectual dishonesty. It is the attempt to pass off another’s work as your own, whether in [Read More...]


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