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...]

Web Yeshiva

Today I learned about the site Web Yeshiva, which has links to a wide range of important classic Jewish texts -the Tanach, Mishnah, Talmudim, Midrashim, other commentaries, and more. I’ve added it to the “Useful Sites” page as well. [Read more...]

Doctor Who: The Ark

The title to the Doctor Who episode “The Ark” immediately hints at a Biblical reference, and in the episode, when the Doctor, Stephen and Dodo realize that they are on a spaceship that has rescued humans and animals from a dying Earth, Dodo actually asks whether they brought two of every animal, like in the [Read More...]

Prof. Matthew Morgenstern on the History of Jewish Aramaic

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God’s Ironic Hatred in Romans 9?

This past Sunday in my Sunday school class, we reached Romans 9. I was struck recently for the first time by the possibility that Paul’s use of texts in this section might be profoundly and perhaps intentionally ironic. The idea that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart, and that God hated Esau, have something in common – [Read More...]


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