Biblical Studies Carnival 41

This is just to second Taylor Williams’ friendly reminder to submit some of your favourite posts of the month of April to the next Biblical Studies Carnival that will be hosted by yours truly right here at Exploring Our Matrix. In order to allow me to spread the preparations over a longer period, please nominate [Read More...]

Without Fear And Trembling

One of the recent conservative commenters on my blog decided to write to my pastor to make sure that he is aware of the sorts of views I have. He is (he regularly attends my Sunday school class, as well as being someone I’ve talked to often in other less formal settings). This occurrence got [Read More...]

Around the Blogosphere

There are so many interesting posts today that simply adding them to the “Blogs I’ve been reading” sidebar will inevitably leave some out. So here are some highlights… Jeremy Smith asks whether John’s Gospel hates on the other Gospels. Mark Goodacre raised the possibility that the centurion’s exclamation in Mark’s Gospel was sarcastic, to which [Read More...]

Dharma Students Make Learning Ancient Languages Fun

No scholar of the Bible or the ancient world should miss taking a closer look at the blackboard that Jack was erasing in a Dharma Initiative classroom in the most recent episode of LOST. If you haven’t seen it yet, it isn’t too late to avert your gaze, and most people will probably need to [Read More...]

Biblical Scholars and Personal Religion

It is exciting to learn that a new blog has been created by Alan Lenzi, devoted to the subject of Biblical Scholars and Personal Religion. Take a look! On an unrelated note, I just can’t bring myself to dedicate a post about tonight’s episode of LOST [spoilers alert]. Sure, there was significant religious content, both [Read More...]

Biblical Diversity and Harmonization

James Bradford Pate has written an overview with some analysis and reflections of my own views on this subject. In particular, those who have been engaged in some of the recent conversations on this blog about the Bible, inerrancy, authority and contradictions (and much, much more) may want to pay a visit to James’ blog. [Read More...]

More of my Articles via Digital Commons

Butler University has obtained permission to make several more of my articles available to read or download from the university web site, via Digital Commons. If you have an interest in the Gospel of John, or in the relationship between the New Testament’s Christology and our own, please do take a look. Several of the [Read More...]


We’ve been talking about faith and doubt on this blog quite a bit lately, and tonight I watched the movie Doubt. Since it is so new I won’t say anything that might spoil it for anyone. But I will offer a recommendation to see it if you have any interest in exploring the themes of [Read More...]

Easter Sunday School

Yesterday’s sermon at my church focused on the ending (or lack thereof) of Mark’s Gospel. The pastor compared Mark to a “choose your own adventure” story, particularly when it comes to the ending. In my Sunday school class, we discussed this as well as another possibility, namely that the original ending of Mark’s Gospel could [Read More...]

Celebrating Easter with the Doubting Disciples

The tradition of viewing Easter as the end of disbelief can be traced back to the New Testament itself, to the Gospel of John, where Thomas, being absent when Jesus appeared to the other disciples, expresses skepticism, only to be confronted by the physical risen Jesus himself. The message of these stories, readers of this [Read More...]

Dead and Buried

John Shuck has kindly offered a short review of my book, The Burial of Jesus, over on his blog. What more appropriate day could there be for this than today? [Read more...]

When Jesus Said “I Am Divine” And Turned Out To Be An Elephant

Here’s Bart Ehrman’s return to the Colbert Report (HT Ben Witherington): The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c Bart Ehrman Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor NASA Name Contest [Read more...]

Self-Critical Faith

The unexamined faith is not worth having. Religion has had many critics from without, and still does. But one characteristic feature of the Biblical tradition is that it is full of critics from within, those who examine their own tradition and challenge themselves first, and then their contemporaries, to rethink it and to live it [Read More...]

4QInstruction and Sethian Gnosticism

In a book I’m reading I encountered a quote from a highly fragmentary text from Qumran that is usually known as 4QInstruction. The fragment 4Q417 includes the words “for engraved are the ordinances of God, about all the [iniquities of the] sons of Seth, and a book of memorial is written before him”. [The picture [Read More...]