RIP Nelson Mandela

The news is just breaking that former South African president, and famous leader of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa, has passed away at age 95. My condolences to his family, my South African friends, and Allan Boesak, colleague at Butler University and director of the new Desmond Tutu Center. [Read more...]

RIP Jerome Murphy-O’Connor

I just learned that New Testament scholar Jerome Murphy-O’Connor has passed away. He was a remarkably insightful scholar, capable of being very traditional and/or very creative in trying to make the best possible sense of the evidence. Those who have traveled to the Holy Land will or should know his The Holy Land: An Oxford [Read More...]

RIP Robert Kysar

I have just learned that Robert Kysar, renowned scholar of the Gospel of John, has passed away. Books like John, the Maverick Gospel have become required reading on the subject. My condolences to all his family and friends, as well as the wider academy of New Testament scholars who may not have known him but [Read More...]

Jesus’ Obituary

Tom Verenna shared a really interesting assignment from a class about the historical Jesus that he is taking. It asked students to write an obituary for Jesus. He did something even more interesting with it, creating an epitaph on the model of ancient funerary inscriptions, rather than a modern-day type of obituary. I won’t summarize [Read More...]

Geza Vermes 1924-2013

I apologize that it has taken me a while to mention the recent passing of Geza Vermes, the renowned scholar of ancient Judaism and the historical Jesus. I had wanted to mark his passing not merely by linking to what others wrote, but by trying to round up and share some of his writings and [Read More...]

Remembering Marshall Gregory

My colleague Marshall Gregory passed away a couple of days ago, and I thought it would be nice to mark his passing by drawing readers’ attention to some of his many articles which are available online. Himself an English professor, “Greg” (as he was know) was a champion of the Liberal Arts and passionate about [Read More...]

RIP Dave Brubeck

Via Sean Carroll’s blog, I learned that legendary jazz musician Dave Brubeck passed away today. [Read more...]

RIP Elliott Carter

American composer Elliott Carter has passed away at the age of 103. Here is a quote that I think is worth reflecting on from the article about his death in the New York Times: As a young man, I harbored the populist idea of writing for the public…I learned that the public didn’t care. So [Read More...]

Obituary for Jesus’ Wife in The Guardian

Andrew Brown wrote a piece for The Guardian in which he says, “It’s been fairly clear for weeks that the papyrus fragment known as the“gospel of Jesus’s wife” was a modern fake, assembled from phrases found in real gnostic gospels and in particular the Gospel of Thomas, a 4th-century copy of a 2nd-century manuscript.” He [Read More...]

Neil Armstrong RIP

The news just broke that the first man on the moon has passed away. Neil Armstrong, the famous astronaut, died today at the age of 82. We will all, I am sure, remember with gratitude for his role in taking humanity to a world other than our own for the first time.   [Read more...]

Christopher Hitchens 1949-2011

Christopher Hitchens, sometimes referred to as one of the “four horsemen” of the “new atheist” movement, has passed away. He was 62. As a liberal Christian, I appreciate individuals such as Hitchens, since the same problems he highlighted with respect to the Bible and historic Christianity are the reasons I find conservative Christianity unpersuasive. The [Read More...]


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