Trump: Not a Polished Human Being

After watching the vice-presidential debate this evening, I was struck by many things. But the highlight for me was when, after Pence had brought forth his Evangelical credentials, and then defended Trump for some things he had said by emphasizing that he isn’t a “polished politician,” Kaine responded with a thoroughly appropriate Bible verse, Luke 6:45, “out of [Read More…]

The Scepter and the Star

I am grateful to Eerdmans for having sent me a free review copy of the second edition of John J. Collins’ book The Scepter and the Star: Messianism in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Anyone familiar with the first edition will already know that the book at the very least retains its value even [Read More…]

I Hope Every Class Makes You Uncomfortable

I’ve been waiting for the start of classes to return to a post on another Patheos blog from some months ago. It was a response to a student who asked whether a particular class was going to challenge their faith and make them uncomfortable. My answer to that question would be much shorter than the one [Read More…]

Christians in Name Only

This cartoon has been making the rounds. It is a pity that some are treating it as a condemnation of Christians, when it clearly is a condemnation of a group that I think ought to be labeled CINA: “Christians in Name Only.” If you fear others, hate others, judge others, and fail to hold yourself [Read More…]

Traditions and Religious Worlds of Late Antiquity – #AARSBL15 Monday Afternoon

Traditions or Eastern Late Antiquity co-sponsored a session with the SBL section on Religious Worlds of Late Antiquity, focused on exploring and problematizing the phenomena that have been labeled “Christianization” and “Islamicization.” The papers looked at topics at the intersection of the two traditions, such as celibacy, and sacred space. I was delighted to see [Read More…]

Bible School Primer for Governors

I just saw the news that Indiana governor Mike Pence has begun turning away refugees. It would be shameful under any circumstances, but Pence pretends to be a defender of Christian values, which makes it all the more disgusting. The above image came my way via Facebook. Unfortunately, Facebook isn’t letting me post links to [Read More…]

All It Takes Is One

Yesterday I came across quotes from Roslyn and Bob Cargill, and I thought they deserved to be shared with a wider audience. First here’s Roslyn: Why is it when it comes to helping refugees in need, treating others as we would want to be treated, and loving our neighbors, conservative Christians scream out, “Yeah, but it [Read More…]

Finding God in the Genome

This image from Pictoral Theology illustrates nicely a number of things about the approach many conservative Christians take to science and nature. Seeing “GOD” in DNA involves (1) treating one’s English language as normative, (2) selectively leaving out and adding things and fixating on the ones which provide meaning, and (3) reading significance that just isn’t [Read More…]

Archaeological Evidence for Jewish Christianity

Eldad Keynan has been looking for archaeological evidence of ancient Jewish Christianity in Israel for a long time, and has turned up a number of intriguing finds. His most recent, and possibly most important, is what appears to be a Jewish Christian mikveh – the only one of its kind. Click through to read his [Read More…]

How Widespread is Mythicism?

An English conservative Christian website drew on Barna research and put together a study, which includes the statistic that about one in five people without a church background in England think Jesus was a myth, and roughly the same number are uncertain whether there was a historical Jesus. Conservative Christians are concerned for different reasons [Read More…]