Scholar or Apologist? Why Not Both?

Although this isn’t a case of “two great tastes that taste great together,” I’ve suggested before that “apologist” and “scholar” are not an absolute dichotomy, but a spectrum. I think that point is relevant to the discussion that has exploded in the blogosphere, with Nijay Gupta, Mike Bird, Anthony Le Donne, Jonathan Bernier, Very Rarely [Read More...]

Quote for the Start of Semester

The quote from Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, comes from an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education, “Wikipedia Founder Discourages Academic Use of His Creation.” The same can be said of the dictionary – I find it hard to believe that I get students starting essays with “Webster’s Dictionary defines…” – or worse still, [Read More...]

Hurtado on Paul’s Messianic Jesus

Larry Hurtado shared a link to the above video of his 2014 lecture on Paul’s Messianism as a variant of ancient Jewish Messianism. [Read more...]

Santa’s Transcript

Inside Higher Ed shared a copy of Santa’s university transcript. Given his busy schedule, I’m not surprised that he has taken so long to finish his degree. But isn’t having a degree issues by a registrar who is also your employee a conflict of interest? I wonder who else it would be interesting to make a [Read More...]

Can University Walls Keep Out The Internet?

This is my conference paper for the Metacriticism of Biblical Studies section at SBL: ______ Can University Walls Keep Out The Internet? James F. McGrath, Butler University   ABSTRACT Statements can be found on the websites of many sectarian educational institutions, indicating that faculty and students are required to subscribe to a particular doctrinal statement. [Read More...]

New Blog

I am grateful to Tavis Bohlinger for drawing attention to the fact that the University of Durham Department of Theology and Religion has a new blog. The address is: https://durhamabbeyhouse.wordpress.com/ This will definitely be worth keeping an eye on!   [Read more...]

Can You Help Sort Out Columbia’s Students?

Matthew Morgenstern shared the above screenshot on Facebook. I searched online and found that Columbia University is looking for a lot of faculty who specialize in discipline. I guess their students in general must be really out of control, and not just the Hebrew-speaking ones!   [Read more...]

10 Amazing Reasons to Buzzfeedify Your Syllabus

Beloit has released its annual mindset list, about the things that this year’s incoming freshmen take for granted (HT Inside Higher Ed). #2 (that’s “hashtag two” for you old-timers) is particularly interesting for educators: “Since they binge-watch their favorite TV shows, they might like to binge-watch the video portions of their courses too.” I’m giving [Read More...]

I Don’t Always Ignore Your E-Mails

A “most interesting man in the world” meme for the start of the semester. [Read more...]

Book of Job Trigger Warning

Rob Zaretsky’s piece in Inside Higher Ed proposes trigger warnings for a number of pieces of classic literature. Given my field, I particularly appreciated his treatment of the Book of Job: Anonymous’ “The Book of Job” “Are you sure this is part of the Bible?” asked many respondents, who also exhibited intense unease with God’s actions, [Read More...]

Discover Butler

Butler University has created several new marketing videos. I love that they integrate the skills, courses, and programs of the Liberal Arts, and in the first of the two videos below (click through for more), one of the students who went on my first trip to Israel and the West Bank in 2012 mentions that [Read More...]


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