My Margaret Barker Experience

I first heard about Margaret Barker seven years ago and have watched from the sidelines as LDS scholars have fallen all over themselves after her ideas. However, I have never read her work. My avoidance of her work changed when a friend of mine sent me one of her lectures for comment (this is a great way to maintain a long-distance friendship, btw). It was worse than I imagined. I listened to the 35 minute lecture probably 10 times and just got more frustrated every time. I am slightly … [Read more...]

Biblical Dead Sea Scrolls, and Various Near Eastern Texts

Two quick notes:Non-LDS scholar Peter Flint gave a lecture on the Dead Sea Scrolls the other day at BYU. You can watch it or listen to the audio at Aquinas' blog. (Hat tip to, uh, Aquinas.)And Logos is doing it to me again. They've got two new databases, wheat amongst the chaff on the prepublication list, which means a reduced price is available before Logos finishes building the databases. (This link explains how the prepublication process works.)The first database is a … [Read more...]

Five Recommended books for Understanding the Old Testament

Five or so...First, a good Bible or two, meant for understanding and personal study. Given only one choice, I'd recommend the Jewish Study Bible. The JPS translation is dynamic (thought-for-thought),the commentary is useful, and the essays included in the back are excellent. If I were to add a second Bible, I'd recommend the NIV Study Bible. It's Evangelical and conservative, but I find it's OT notes useful, the translation quite readable. … [Read more...]

Offenders for a Word

The classic Daniel Peterson/Stephen Ricks historical defense of LDS doctrine, Offenders for a Word, has been put up on the FARMS website, along with a slew of other volumes. … [Read more...]

Curses!

A discussion I had recently with a friend of mine reminded me of one of my other favorite soap boxes that I haven't stood on in this forum before. No, it has nothing to do with swearing (in a traditional sense at least). Today I'm more interested in the sort of curses that God lays on peoples. Like on the Lamanites and stuff. And yeah I know that there is nothing new in the 'Nacle so I'll just say outright that I haven't even looked elsewhere to see who has already broached the subject and what … [Read more...]

LDS at SBL: Roll call

The annual Society of Biblical Literature conference will be held next month in San Diego, in combination with the American Academy of Religion or AAR. ( The American School of Oriental Research or ASOR used to hold theirs concurrently as well.) SBL is probably the largest conference of its kind, lasting several days, with several thousand people in attendance. The best parts are the socializing and networking, and the Bookanalia, in which hundreds of academic book and software publishers set up … [Read more...]

Ten Tidbits about the Old Testament

This post joins the previous ones of similar title on the New Testament and Book of Mormon.I make no claims that these are the biggest nor the most tantalizing, but here are ten tidbits about the Old Testament (Hebrew Bible) that receive little attention (in my experience) in Church settings. I'm intentionally leaving out the better known biggies, such as JEDP, two or three Isaiahs, or the fact that "history" in the modern sense wasn't an operative category for the authors of the Hebrew … [Read more...]

The Divine Council and its Doctrinal Implications: an EV-Mormon Discussion

Several months ago, I mentioned Mike Heiser's paper, " You've Seen One Elohim, You've Seen Them All? A Critique of Mormonism's Use of Psalm 82 ." Heiser wrote his dissertation on the topic of the Divine Council, and runs a website entitled The Divine Council which is aimed somewhat at Evangelicals, who tend to misunderstand the Old Testament text on this topic. He also works for Logos, which provides excellent Bible resources and study tools. Heiser, an Evangelical, "feel[s] more … [Read more...]


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