Second Temple Model

I bought my son a wooden model kit of the Second Temple from the bookstore and gift shop at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. Today he finished work on the construction, and so I thought I’d share photos of the result! [Read more…]

Richard Carrier Illustrates Historical Jesus Methodology

While one might or might not see fit to dispute Richard Carrier’s specific conclusions in his recent post, “The Dying Messiah Redux,” I think that the most important thing to note is the approach to history that it illustrates. Carrier argues that, because certain views expressed in Jewish literature from several centuries after the rise [Read More…]

A Romanian Smuggler of Dead Sea Scrolls?

The Romanian news outlet Adevărul is reporting that a Romanian citizen has been apprehended attempting to cross the border between Switzerland and Italy with a stash of Dead Sea Scrolls of great value. Which scrolls they are, whether they are authentic, and where they were obtained remain to be determined. Swiss police are said to [Read More…]

Pamela Eisenbaum Lecture on Paul

Here’s a lecture by Pamela Eisenbaum entitled “The Paul I Know: A Jewish Evaluation”: HT Bruce Prescott [Read more…]

Early Jewish, Christian or Manichaean Manuscript to be Auctioned

A very ancient papyrus document, featuring a psalm in Coptic which has been variously proposed to be Christian, Jewish, or Manichaean, is due to by auctioned by Christie’s. Alin Suciu has more information on his blog, as well as a call for some institution to purchase it and ensure that it remains available for scholarly [Read More…]

Loquats, Olive Oil, and Tombs

What the three things mentioned in the title of this post have in common is my friend Eldad Keynan, who stopped by the hotel where I am staying in Haifa and spoke to my students as well as me. He brought me some fruit from his garden (sheseq, which a quick internet search informed me [Read More…]

Fringe: For Scientists Playing God, Creating a Universe Can Take Longer Than 6 Days

The season finale of Fringe focused on religious themes from the outset and continued throughout. Spoilers ahead if you haven’t seen it yet. William Bell turned out in this timeline to be behind the activities of David Robert Jones and the attempt to collapse the two universes and create a new one. In the season [Read More…]

Geirr Tveitt – Sun God Symphony Op. 81

When a composer whose music I enjoy also touches on a religious theme, that’s all the more reason to share it, right? But in fact, Tveitt’s ideology, reflected in this piece and others, is disturbing and definitely worth discussing. It reflects the tendency to reject not only Judaism but also Christianity (so intimately connected with [Read More…]

Fringe: Philip Broyles did not Spare his Only Son

There was a lot of God-talk in the episode of Fringe “The Consultant.” Discussing a case which (like almost all of them on Fringe) involved someone dying under unusual circumstances, the subject comes up whether God killed the man in question, as Walter quotes from Romans 1. Walter adds that some would say that God [Read More…]

Talpiot Tomb/Good Friday-Easter/Passover Round-Up

Since the book and documentary promoting the view that Talpiot Tomb B is connected with the earliest Christians was timed to coincide with the Easter season, it is unsurprising that the attention to it is growing. And it seems appropriate to blog about the Talpiot tombs on a day which is all about Jesus’s body [Read More…]