Monotheism Interview Series: First Installment with Nathan MacDonald

David Burnett has begun a series of interviews on the topic of monotheism and Biblical studies, over on his blog The Time Has Been Shortened. The first interviewee is Nathan MacDonald, whose work in this area I’m sure will be familiar to many readers. If this field interests you, why not click through and take [Read More...]

A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus: How to Ask Hard Questions

This is the third installment in my blog review of A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus, which is part of the blog tour organized by the publisher. In my experience, students are less daunted by or opposed to the asking of really difficult questions when those questions are seen to be posed or raised by the [Read More...]

Applied Immersion Linguistics at SBL in San Francisco

I received my SBL program book in the mail yesterday, and looked to see what sessions looked interesting and begin figuring out which I might like to attend. Among the most striking are the lunchtime meetings in applied linguistics: S20-202 Applied Linguistics for Biblical Languages 11/20/2011 11:45 AM to 12:45 PM Room: Howard – Intercontinental [Read More...]

Unlikely Lines to Find in the Bible

Some of these are classic (HT Deirdre Good): [Read more...]

More on Ancient Language Acquisition

Amber Baker shared contrasting experiences of learning Hebrew. Brian Schultz posted about fluency and reading comprehension. Jim Davila did better on Daniel Streett’s quiz than most. Steve Caruso asked us to try the same quiz with Aramaic. Jim Davila shared information about a course on Zoharic Aramaic (with links to pdfs of the text). [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...]

Discussion Continues about New Testament Study, Languages and Methods

Here are some posts that are part of or relate to the ongoing discussion of the essential languages and tools for New Testament Study. Daniel Streett posted about the difference between reading a language fluently and being able to translate it word for word. Anyone who has learned to speak a modern language fluently will [Read More...]

Quote of the Day (David Miller)

Science was the best vehicle for determining whether Galileo was right. Church leaders who feared the crumbling of their Aristotelian theologies were not the best persons to make such a determination. Likewise, the discipline of history is the best vehicle for determining the historicity of Adam and Eve. Church leaders who fear the crumbling of [Read More...]

Sooner or Later It Comes Down To Faith

In one of my classes, after discussing a number of difficulties and issues related to the creation stories in Genesis, a student chimed in that sooner or later one simply has to have faith. I didn’t disagree, but instead asked: What sort of faith, and faith in what? We had already read part of Paul [Read More...]

The Weirdest Bible Translation Ever?

The blog On The Main Line recently had a post entitled “The weirdest Bible translation ever.” Can you guess which one the author had in mind? No, it isn’t the Klingon Bible. It is The Orthodox Jewish Bible: Tanakh and Orthodox Jewish Brit Chadasha by Phillip E. Goble. You can take a look at it [Read More...]

Discussion of Languages and New Testament Study around the Blogosphere

The discussion of which languages you need for New Testament study seems to have gone viral. Here are links to those who have chimed in since I wrote my own post on the subject: James Crossley Chris Brady Duane Smith Larry Hurtado (twice) BW16 (twice) Jim West Matthew R. Malcolm See also Mike Kok’s contribution [Read More...]


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