James D. G. Dunn, Did The First Christians Worship Jesus?

James D. G. Dunn, Did the First Christians Worship Jesus?: The New Testament Evidence (SPCK/Westminster John Knox, 2010) I probably should preface this post with a disclaimer that this should not be thought of as your typical review. I studied for my PhD under Jimmy Dunn. He is my Doktorvater, mentor and friend. I also didn’t [Read More...]

Can LOST Pass The Star Wars Prequel Test?

Star Wars told a story which began part way through, with the action already underway, and then went back and told the earlier part of the story. In a much more complex way, LOST did something similar. It wasn’t quite Memento, but it certainly filled in successively earlier parts of the story in something not [Read More...]

Lady Gaga and Religion

Experimental Theology and CNN have both had articles about Lady Gaga’s use of religious imagery in a recent music video. Many are finding it offensive, and many more acknowledge it is provocative and controversial. In my own opinion, this is hardly surprising, given her earlier song – you know, the one that rudely called the [Read More...]

Blog Hiatus vs. Business as Usual

With a major new project comes the possibility of less blogging. As I contemplated this recently, I wondered whether nowadays, when most of us read blogs in a feed reader of some sort, there is any point in announcing a blog hiatus. What are readers’ opinions about that? As I thought about possibly announcing a [Read More...]

Steve Caruso: “This Is A Big Deal”

Steve Caruso, who will be part of the Mandaean Book of John project, has chimed in about it on his own blog, and I wanted to echo his words about it: “This is a big deal.” I’m sharing the above Mandaic text from Steve’s blog (the Mandaic title of the Book of John, drashia d-Iahia), which he [Read More...]

Exciting News! NEH to Fund Translation of Mandaean Book of John!

The NEH has announced that it will be funding a grant proposal I wrote for a project to translate the Mandaean Book of John into English. Over the next two years, the focus will be on producing a typed eclectic Mandaic text using the available manuscript evidence, and an English translation. The longer-term goal is [Read More...]

Quote of the Day (Robert Oerter)

“If religion teaches us atheists one thing, it should be this: to be skeptical of claims that we want to believe. Some atheists seem to have fallen into the trap of believing in a pagan origin for Christianity because it suits their agenda, rather than on the basis of the evidence. We should instead be [Read More...]

Critical Thinking

Anna Blanch of the blog Goannatree has a post on critical thinking, complete with diagrams of key elements. Here’s a sample: [Read more...]

Climbing Mount Slippery

I have blogged before about the metaphor of the slippery slope and suggested variations on it or rejecting it entirely. The image came up again in Sunday school this week, when Scot McKnight (in his book The Blue Parakeet) problematized the notion that changing your mind in one area automatically leads down a “slippery slope” [Read More...]

Around the Blogosphere

Too many interesting things today to fit in the sidebar, and so here are links to posts on other blogs that deserve attention: Scotteriology, Verily Verily, The Church of Jesus Christ, Friendly Atheist, Pharyngula and others mention that the “Touchdown Jesus” statue has either been destroyed by the forces of nature, or been tackled by some [Read More...]

Facebook: Jim Likes The 101 Hottest Women In The World

There’s a malicious application spreading around Facebook at the moment. I first encountered it on Jim Davila’s Facebook feed, where it said: Jim likes :|:| 101 Hottest Women in the World :|:| on :|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:| :|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:| :|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|:|… Jim’s blog and Facebook had already informed us that Jim had travelled from St. Andrews to California, and so [Read More...]

The World Cup vs. the PhD

From PHD Comics HT Marc Cortez and Goannatree [Read more...]

Barbara Walters Visits Afghanistan: Not A True Story, But A Good Joke

Today in church the preacher told the following story, which is not a true story but is a good joke: Barbara Walters of 20/20 did a story on gender roles in Kabul, Afghanistan, several years before the Afghan conflict. She noted that women customarily walked 5 paces behind their husbands. She recently returned to Kabul [Read More...]

Interview at Common Sense Atheism

An interview I did with Luke Muehlhauser at Common Sense Atheism has been posted. Have a listen and let me know what you think! [Read more...]