Review of Gretta Vosper, With or Without God

Review of Gretta Vosper, With or Without God: Why The Way We Live is More Important than What We Believe (Toronto: Harper Collins, 2008). ISBN 978-1-55468-228-7. 384 + xvi pp. “What is a Christian? Am I a Christian?” These are questions that have come up time and again on this blog, and they frequently do [Read More…]

Mandaean Baptism on YouTube

There is a video clip of a Mandaean baptism in Iran on YouTube: This is only one of several video clips related to the Mandaeans and their current plight. [Read more…]

Is Jesus the Only Way? Not according to most Christians…or the Bible!

Evangelical fundamentalists are the ones who usually pose the question in these terms, “Is Jesus the only way?” and then they will say “Let’s see what the Bible says” and then read John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me.” There are two [Read More…]

Syriac New Testament in Audio Format?

Does anyone know of a recording of the Syriac New Testament in audiobook format, either on CD or as mp3s? If so, let me know! [Read more…]

Snippets from a Sunday Service

I thought I’d share a couple or things from the service I attended yesterday. First, there was a clip of poet Amena Brown reciting her poem “To Worship You“. I am sure that many regular visitors to this blog may not think of God in the same way she does, but since we talk a [Read More…]

Review of Birger Pearson’s Ancient Gnosticism

A review I wrote of Birger Pearson’s Ancient Gnosticism: Traditions and Literature (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2007) has just appeared in the Review of Biblical Literature. [Read more…]

Review of Kenneth E. Bailey, Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes

Review of Kenneth E. Bailey, Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes: Cultural Studies in the Gospels (Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2008). ISBN 978-0-8308-2568-4. 443 pp. In his latest book, Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes, Kenneth Bailey provides further discussion of various parts of the New Testament Gospels, from the perspective that has been his own unique [Read More…]

Scam Spam Undermining Your Religion

I was “blessed” to receive the following scam e-mail not once but twice. To all those who have received it and think it may be legitimate, it is not. It is an attempt to get your personal information. Don’t fall for it! The message text follows. Note the hilarious (and presumably unintentional) part about “undermining [Read More…]

Take the Barack Obama Blasphemy Challenge!

I’ve posted a couple of times now on the speculations that are making the rounds by e-mail and on the web about Barack Obama being the antichrist. Clearly many of the Christians making such allegations have not thought things through. The Book of Revelation depicts the Beast as in cahoots with and activated by Satan [Read More…]

Lord of the (Fire)flies

The sure sign that summer is here can be seen out many windows right now: fireflies, or “lightning bugs” as we used to call them. Their luminescence is one of the mysteries of biology, not to mention evolution more specifically. And thus the firefly nicely illustrates the problems created by the “God of the gaps” [Read More…]