Loquats, Olive Oil, and Tombs

What the three things mentioned in the title of this post have in common is my friend Eldad Keynan, who stopped by the hotel where I am staying in Haifa and spoke to my students as well as me. He brought me some fruit from his garden (sheseq, which a quick internet search informed me [Read More...]

Caesarea Maritimia, Acre and Haifa

Today was our first day of touring, and it felt pretty full, although the tour guide at the end of the day said that tomorrow will be a full day, and so apparently it is possible to at least try to squeeze even more in. Today was a visit to completely new places for all [Read More...]

The Seven Spirits of God and Heavenly Bureaucracy in the Book of Revelation

A few weeks ago we began working our way through the Book of Revelation in my Sunday school class. Two points that I drew attention to in the text relate to the same theme of the cosmology of the author and readers, with its heavily populated spiritual and celestial realms. Right in the first paragraph, [Read More...]

The Only True God in Paperback

At long last, the wait is almost over for those of you who’ve been awaiting a paperback edition of my book The Only True God: Early Christian Monotheism in Its Jewish Context. University of Illinois Press will be releasing the book in paperback in a few months’ time, and it is already available for pre-order [Read More...]

Matthew Levering’s Jesus and the Demise of Death

I am delighted to have the opportunity to participate in the Patheos Book Club discussion of Matthew Levering’s book Jesus and the Demise of Death: Resurrection, Afterlife, and the Fate of the Christian (Baylor University Press, 2012). The introduction indicates the volume’s particular focus clearly and accurately. Within both Biblical studies and theology, there has [Read More...]

Melammu, the Mandaeans and other Mesopotamians

Charles Jones posted at Ancient World Online about the Melammu project, which has a digital library dedicated to “The Intellectual Heritage of Assyria and Babylonia in East and West.” The site contains numerous interesting pieces, but not surprisingly the one that grabbed my attention was Amar Annus’ “Some Otherworldly Journeys in Mesopotamian, Jewish, Mandaean and [Read More...]

Translating (Away) The Son of God

I’ve been meaning for some time to come back to a topic that has been garnering attention, the news that some Bible translations aimed at predominantly Islamic contexts were not using the phrase “son of God”, ever since I circulated an online article mentioning the news and was met with expressions of concern because that [Read More...]

New Online Jewish Studies Resources

Two major resources that I want to share: The Cairo Genizah Collection at the Bodleian Library in Oxford (HT Dan McClellan and AWOL) The Israel Antiquities Authorities National Treasures (HT Jim West)   [Read more...]

Doctor Who: The Faceless Ones

The Doctor Who episode “The Faceless Ones” from the Patrick Troughton era is a gripping mystery set largely in Gatwick Airport, where aliens have infiltrated and are working to abduct human young people. Most of the action revolves around the Doctor’s attempt to determine what exactly is going on, who is responsible, and why they [Read More...]

Nerds Reconsidering Star Wars Religion

A recent article in Tablet Magazine challenges the religious message of Star Wars in interesting ways (HT The Lead and Religion Nerd). On the one hand, the article makes some good points about the superficiality of some Star Wars spirituality, or the attempt to let “following one’s bliss” be a guide to life. Yet on [Read More...]

Jeff Carter Blogs About The Only True God

Jeff Carter has been reading my book The Only True God and yesterday he blogged about it. Please click through and take a look at what he has to say. Thanks, Jeff, for blogging about the book! (I’ve been under the weather with a really bad cold, and so my blogging and even blog reading [Read More...]


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