The Bible and Economic and Social Justice: Following Ruth into Leviticus

I’ve been wanting to post some thoughts that came up in my class on the Bible last week. We were discussing the Book of Ruth, which itself challenged Israelite laws and prejudices aimed at Moabites (that itself is a message that some Christians seem not to have grasped). In the process of discussing Ruth, the [Read More...]

What “Most Christians” Think

My last post included a slide that mentions “most Christians.” And so I thought I should offer a follow-up post, acknowledging that it is almost impossible to figure out what with precision what “most Christians” think, believe, and practice, without actually asking most Christians – and even then, we would still be unable to answer [Read More...]

Hagar as Woman, Slave and Wife

It is useful to discuss what is going on with Christopher Rollston at Emmanuel Christian Seminary from the perspective of academic freedom. But it is also important to pay attention to the matter that sparked it all: Biblical studies, and what Chris referred to as the “marginalization of women” in the Bible. That terminology doesn’t [Read More...]

In Support of Christopher Rollston

Thom Stark and others have blogged about the unfolding events related to Christopher Rollston, a widely-appreciated and well-known Biblical scholar and epigrapher, who is facing disciplinary action and perhaps even termination at Emmanuel Christian Seminary, because of an article he wrote for the Huffington Post about the marginalization of women in the Bible. I have said before [Read More...]

Chasing Certainty

Another quote from Fred Clark's blog Slacktivist, turned into a poster by the Facebook group Christians Against the Tea Party.   [Read more...]

Fundamentalism’s Final Arbiter

I could not find the original source of the quotation, but presume that it is somewhere on Fred Clark's blog Slacktivist.   [Read more...]

The Bible, Inspiration, and Fundamentalism

Chris Heard was “inspired” by a recent blog post of mine to share some thoughts on his blog about the Bible and inspiration. First, let me emphasize that, had the terminology of “inspiration” been widely used in the Bible as a way of indicating the distinctive character of sacred texts, I would not have made [Read More...]

The Future Format of Books?

Tim Bulkeley has written a book. The title is Not Only a Father: Talk of God as Mother in the Bible and Christian Tradition. You can buy it in traditional printed book format if you are so inclined. But he has also done some other interesting and perhaps radically innovative things with it. He’s made [Read More...]

The Bible’s Authors Were Inspired by God

The Bible’s authors were inspired by God. That statement has been the focus of an incredible amount of controversy. But for some reason, late last night the thought occurred to me that the controversy is largely the result of taking that phrase in something other than its normal English sense. There have been countless books [Read More...]

Biblical Pun of the Day

HT Jim West [Read more...]

Sheol Identified

Scholars and laypeople have engaged in significant debate about the precise meaning of the word/name “Sheol” in the Bible. At times it seems to be an underworld, at times simply the grave, and at times perhaps something else. A student in my class on the Bible has actually solved the mystery and come up with [Read More...]