Bordering Others: Traditions of Eastern Late Antiquity #aarsbl15 Sunday Afternoon Session

The first paper in the TELA session on the theme “Bordering Others: Examining Religious Community in Eastern Late Antiquity” was by Jennifer Hart and focused in using orthopraxy to define “true” Mandaeism. She began with a quote from the work The Thousand and Twelve Questions, which is focused on ritual error and what to do [Read More...]

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Mandaeans: Mysteries and Misunderstandings

The Mandaeans and related topics have gotten mentions in the blogosphere and elsewhere online recently, and so I thought I would round up some of those instances: Brian LePort has been teaching about John the Baptist, and in the process, has been diving into the Mandaean sources. Tony Burke noted, as did I, the Mandaeans [Read More...]

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John the Baptist’s Bones, Serapion, and the Mandaeans

As a result of the episode of the CNN series Finding Jesus which focused on John the Baptist, significant attention is being paid to bones which are supposedly his, and genetic testing of which has suggested they belong to a first-century Middle Eastern man. See  Tony Burke’s earlier post about Serapion’s “Life of John the Baptist” and [Read More...]

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Bulldog Beginnings

I read recently that the Butler University use of the Bulldogs for the university team name and mascot began when the Butler team – known as the “Christians” (since the school was then still affiliated with the Christian Churches Disciples of Christ) or sometimes the “Blue and White” - played a team from Franklin, the “Baptists.” The heated rivalry led to [Read More...]

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Finding Jesus on CNN

Mark Goodacre pointed out that the CNN documentary Finding Jesus now has a trailer video. There is apparently also a book forthcoming that was written in conjunction with the series: Finding Jesus: Faith. Fact. Forgery: Six Holy Objects That Tell the Remarkable Story of the Gospels by David Gibson and Michael McKinley. [Read more...]

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Changing the World

I saw the above cartoon on a new Facebook page created for John Harrison the cartoonist, and so thought I would share it, together with a link to that page. [Read more...]

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Dunking for Different Reasons

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Young John the Baptist, and John the Methodist

Both via Episcopal Church Memes on Facebook.   [Read more...]

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Jesus takes the ALS #IceBucketChallenge

Roger Wolsey shared the above on Facebook. If Jesus were living in our world today, how do you think he would have responded to the ice bucket challenge? Living in a world without modern medical research possibilities, he did what he could. What would he do today? [Read more...]

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Jesus as God in the Gospel of Mark?

Michael Kruger wrote a blog post about Jesus as God in the Gospel of Mark. His argument is that, in the Scriptural citations towards the beginning of the Gospel (which the author of Mark, or the Greek text he draws upon, actually rewords), texts which in Isaiah and Malachi refer to the preparation of the coming [Read More...]

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Josephus, Jesus, and John

Ken Olson recently had a guest post on the Jesus Blog, about the Testimonium Flavianum. Olson’s chapter on this subject, “A Eusebian Reading of the Testimonium Flavianum,” is online on Academia.edu. Jim Davila and Richard Carrier also discuss this topic. Olson’s argument is summed up as follows: “The most likely hypothesis is that Eusebius either composed the [Read More...]

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