The Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature–2014

I just returned from attending the Annual Meeting of two groups: the Society of Biblical Literature and the American Academy of Religion. Each organization holds its annual meeting jointly in the same place. This year it was held on November 22-25 at the Convention Center in San Diego. It was such a delight to be there. Many of the most famous theologians and biblical exegetes in the world attend this convention every year. Because of it, I have the privilege of knowing many of them. The Society … [Read more...]

See My Redesigned Website

Check out the new look at My eldest daughter, Christy Eller, has a website business at, and she is good at it. I'm so proud of her. She redesigned my website that I've had for nearly 18 years and just launched this redesign of it today. It has lots of photos of me, most of them regarding my career as a professional golfer on the PGA Tour and Champions Tour. And the ten update articles about my book Palestine Is Coming are better than reading … [Read more...]

Rosetta Mission Accomplished!

Yesterday, the European Space Agency (ESA) accomplished a first in space exploration with its Rosetta Mission. Its spacecraft called "Rosetta" began its journey ten years ago It had flown 4 billion miles through space to come alongside a comet named "67 P/C-G" that is about three miles in diameter and flying in its orbit around the sun at a maximum speed of 84,000 miles per hour. Rosetta then released a probe called "Philae" that descended seven hours until it successfully landed on the comet. … [Read more...]

Is Church Membership Necessary?

I don't think so. It's not in the New Testament. Thus, the early church didn't have our tradition called "church membership." So, during that first century there was no "joining a church." People were members of a local church because that's the group with which they assembled to worship God together and fellowship with one another. Of course, a church to them was a group of people, not a building.This raises the question about how Christians decide on their church polity. Are we at liberty … [Read more...]

Interview of Kenneth L. Woodward, Newsweek’s Religion Editor

I just read this interview of Kenneth L. Woodward. At the time of the interview, in 2002, he had been Newsweek magazine's Religion Editor for 38 years. I think Woodward is really insightful about American Christianity. Here is the URL: … [Read more...]

Sweden Recognizes Palestinian Statehood

Yesterday, Sweden became the first EU member and the third Western European nation to recognize Palestinian statehood. The others are Cyprus and Malta. Such recognition is no more than a symbolic gesture. But it is a public announcement that Sweden now takes not only a political stand advocating the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but that it now recognizes the State of Palestine even though Palestinians don't have an actual land they can claim as sovereignly their … [Read more...]

What Does Maranatha Mean?

Yesterday, I posted about "your kingdom come" in the Lord's Prayer in Matthew 6.9-13 and Luke 11.2-4. The Aramaic word maranatha is similar. Here is an excerpt from my book, The Restitution of Jesus Christ, about maranatha:The Apostle Paul uses the Aramaic word maranatha only in 1 Corinthians 16.22.[1] This use indicates that Greek-speaking Christians borrowed this transliterated word from the early Aramaic-speaking Jewish Christians of Judea and Galilee and made it a part of their own … [Read more...]

What Does “Your Kingdom Come” Mean in “the Lord’s Prayer”?

According to the gospels of Matthew and Luke, Jesus taught his disciples how to pray. This model prayer has been popularly called "the Lord's Prayer," with "Lord" referring to Jesus. Both Matthew and Luke provide a similar version of it, with Luke's being shorter (Matthew 6.9-13; Luke 11.2-4). Both prayers begin by addressing God as "Father." That was Jesus' favorite way of referring to God. Calling God "Father" obviously is a recognition of an relationship with God similar to what a son or a … [Read more...]