New Seals discovered in Jerusalem

I have a new post up on my blog, which has been changed to a new address (http://www.religionofancientpalestine.com), on the late Iron Age seals recently discovered in Jerusalem. http://www.religionofancientpalestine.com/?p=452 … [Read more...]

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Right, Wrong, and the Divine Voice in Scripture

The story of Abram and Sarai in Egypt has always been concerning, specifically the part about him asking her to tell others they weren’t married but were brother and sister. One issue, by no means the most important, is that it seems he asked her to lie for him, which could conflict with notions of what a prophet is and is not supposed to do. The parallel account of Abraham, Sarah, and Abimalech claims that it was only a partial falsehood, since Sarah was the prophet’s half-sibling (Genesis 20: … [Read more...]

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Plaster Wall Inscription 4.2: El, Baal, and YHWH

I have put up a draft of my study on plaster wall inscription 4.2 from Kuntillet ‘Ajrud, which offers a revised transcription, translation, and commentary. If you are less interested in epigraphic analysis, then you are welcome to skip to the exegetical commentary further below. There I present the argument that in the context of Israel-Judah the name Baal referred to El, the head of the Israelite pantheon. … [Read more...]

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Who is Baal?

A little post on the god Baal at my blog.http://www.religionofancientpalestine.com/?p=361 … [Read more...]

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Give Mormon liberals a break

The follow post reproduces a post at M* nearly identically.  Spending any time at all on social media can rapidly distort your sense of reality when it comes to what most Mormons believe. We often forget that more than half of Mormons live outside of the United States and that almost none of these people care about the petty concerns of the various factions out there. In my relatively conservative ward in rural South Dakota, most people don’t follow any of the blog-based battles. Most people ar … [Read more...]

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Historical events as the basis of religious belief

I thought this was a nice quote relevant to the perils of choosing history as the site for the disclosure of divine purpose and will:"Von Rad also made the point, perhaps better than Noth, that the method of Albright and his students, which led to what was known as the ‘biblical theology movement’ (articulated especially by G. Ernest Wright, 1960; see von Rad 1961 for a rejoinder) prioritized the historical events as the basis of religious belief, valuing the biblical story as a testimony to … [Read more...]

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YHWH and his asherah

For those interested, I have posted an updated version of an article on the meaning of asherah in the inscriptions from Kuntillet 'Ajrud and Khirbet el-Qom on my personal website.Abstract:The meaning of asherah in the inscriptions from Kuntillet ‘Ajrud and Khirbet el-Qom has been a focus of persistent discussion and debate, and still today the divergence in scholarly views is wide-ranging. The present paper aims to critically assess previous scholarship by examining each of the major pro … [Read more...]

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Daniel Peterson and Admitting Defeat

Some people just get a pass. It's not right but it's the way things are. Recently on our blog, Daniel Peterson's piece in the Deseret News was noticed for its wholesale borrowing from unattributed sources that far exceeds the bounds of academic (and probably journalistic standards). Submitted as a student essay, this piece would have earned Peterson a trip to the dean/provost of students. Submitted to a peer reviewed journal, this piece would have garnered a swift rejection. Or had it made it to … [Read more...]

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