The Ensign Gets Scholarly. Kinda.

The January Ensign (not available on-line yet)  includes "The New Testament: The Historical Context" by BYU prof Thomas Wayment. PhD from Claremont, focused on textual criticism (as I recall), Wayment is one of the young movers and shakers at BYU. He co-authored Jesus Christ and the World of the New Testament, which garnered all kinds of positive press from lds blogs. … [Read more...]

With God, nothing shall be impossible

Advent is almost over, the season of the church year that anticipates Christmas. At some point during Advent I like to read the Magnificat, Mary’s psalm of praise in anticipation of her son’s birth, and listen to Charles Villiers Stanford’s lovely musical setting of that text.My soul doth magnify the Lord, And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For he that is mi … [Read more...]

The pendulum swings, and Christmas returns: unconscious Gospel marketing

LDS have at times emphasized uniquely LDS characteristics, and at other times focused on what we have in common with other Christians. Armand Mauss talks about this in terms of maintaining optimum tension with the surrounding culture;  I can't decide if what I'm about to describe is simply a restate of that principle, or a parallel principle in a different realm. … [Read more...]

The Scriptures: an Anthology; or, Why Jonah and the Book of Mormon Have No Bearing On Each Other

When I teach Sunday School or Priesthood, I naturally draw on my experiences and knowledge in preparing the lesson. This means I tend to express my opinions (clearly labeled as such), which strike most people as novel and, put kindly, "interesting." A ward member sent me an email after I taught one such lesson, and the conversation turned first towards questions of genre and historicity in the Old Testament, and then towards the historicity of the Book of Mormon. After hearing my view that the … [Read more...]

Announcing Jim Faulconer and “Speaking Silence”

James Faulconer, BYU Philosophy professor has joined Patheos to write a weekly column, Speaking Silence.One of the goals of Patheos is to enrich inter-religious understanding, and make the Other more accessible.  As such, it seemed a natural fit to invite Prof. Faulconer because he holds the Richard L. Evans Chair of Religious Understanding. His other academic credentials are easily found, but I know he also takes great interest in France, (French)  food and Romans, among other things. We wel … [Read more...]

Review: James Calvin Davis, “In Defense of Civility”

Title: In Defense of Civility: How Religion Can Unite America on Seven Moral Issues that Divide Us Author: James Calvin Davis Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press Genre: Religion/Politics Year: 2010 Pages: 198 ISBN13: 9780664235444 Binding: Paperback Price: 19.95The subtitle of James Calvin Davis's new book In Defense of Civility describes an audacious pipe dream. If the book aims to tell readers "How Religion can Unite America on Seven Moral Issues That Divide Us" I would be satisfied with … [Read more...]

Podcasts are back! And on iTunes! Today, Ezekiel

We do have some work to do with iTunes in terms of getting the descriptors and links and such correct, but the important thing is, you can now subscribe and new podcasts will download automatically. Search iTunes podcasts for "One Eternal Round" "Patheos" or Spackman, and you'll get there. Or try this link.Transcript [audio:] Notes and Links … [Read more...]

Audio- Reading the Bible Critically and Religiously: Jewish, Catholic and Protestant Perspectives

I posted a link and thoughts on Peter Enns' take on the question of reading the Bible through both academic and religious/devotional lenses. Now the audio of the entire panel presentation is available. Marc Brettler of Brandeis presents a Jewish perspective and Daniel J. Harrington (Boston College) a Catholic perspective. The whole thing is moderated by Jeffrey Tigay (University of Pennsylvania, himself a great Jewish scholar of the Hebrew Bible) and includes a Q&A with students. It's worth … [Read more...]

Review: John F. Haught, “God and the New Atheism”

Title: God and the New Atheism: A Critical Response to Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchens Author: John F. Haught Publisher: Westminster John Knox Genre: Religion Year: 2008 Pages: 124 ISBN13: 9780664233044 Binding: Paperback Price: 16.95Responses to the claims of the so-called "new atheism" vary according to the interests of each particular respondent. John F. Haught, Senior Fellow in Science and Religion at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University is touted as "one of the world's l … [Read more...]

Announcing Rosalynde Welch, Salt and Seed

Rosalynde Welch will be contributing a weekly column to the Mormon Portal, entitled Salt and Seed.  Rosalynde is known around the LDS blogs for her presence at Times&Seasons, but also writes  on interreligious issues for the St Louis Post-Dispatch. She also serves as the managing editor of the Mormon Review, and she steals the occasional afternoon to pursue her own research agendas in early modern literature and Mormon literature and philosophy. She holds degrees in English literature f … [Read more...]