Jana Has Tweeted the Whole Bible

As of today, the indefatigable Jana Riess has tweeted the entire Bible, a chapter per day:

Today’s the last day of my Twible project, which I can scarcely believe. When I first started this in 2009, I was daunted to discover that there are 1,189 chapters of the Bible. (Did we know this?) That meant 1,189 days of my life doled out in tweets.

But [kairos] time flies, so this week finds me putting the finishing touches on the trippy Book of Revelation:

#Twible Rev 19: Time for the Wedding Supper of the Lamb. (Just so we’re clear, lamb is not what’s on the menu. It’s kind of a metaphor.)

#Twible Rev 20: Satan’s bound for 1,000 years, then hurled into the Lake of Fire & Brimstone for 24/7 torment. Talk about your just deserts.

Kudos, Jana!!!

It’s Probably True, Even If Jesus Didn’t Say It [Questions That Haunt]

Questions That Haunt Christianity

This week, Andrew asked us to consider the claims of divinity that are attributed to Jesus in the Fourth Gospel:

In the Gospel of John, Jesus makes many confident self-proclamations (conservative Evangelical’s favorite verses which seemingly demonstrates the exclusivity of Jesus). Now, I’m sure that claiming to be God in 1st century Judiasm is a really big deal; however, how is it that none of these self-proclamations make it into any of the synoptic gospels? Is it possible that Jesus never made these self-proclamations? If not, how does this effect our understanding of Trinitarian theology in the gospel accounts?

There’s been a very robust conversation about this post, and I encourage you to read it. In the 1,000 words I afford myself on these responses, I simply cannot reprise all of those arguments.

First, in case you are new to this kind of question, here’s the background. Most reputable scholars think this about the four Gospels:

  • Mark came first, probably in the late 50s or early 60s.
  • Matthew and Luke were both written in the mid- to late-60s. They both use Mark as a source, a source that scholars refer to as “Q,” and their own source material.
  • John comes much later — probably in the mid-90s — and uses mostly unique material.

Here’s how the four Gospels look in somewhat twisted mind of Paul Soupiset, as I asked him to make a Venn Diagram of the overlaps for the next Animate course:

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What I Learned about the Bible from Undergrads

Today I’ll finish grading the final exams of the students who took “Introduction to the New Testament” this Spring at St. Cloud State University. It was my first foray into undergraduate teaching, and I heartily thank all of you readers who gave me advice about teaching undergrads. The most-given piece of advice was, “Own the Classroom.” I can’t say that I did that. Although I didn’t allow the students to call me by my first name, I cannot help but run a fairly informal classroom — you may have heard, but I’ve got a thing against hierarchy.

It seems that one of my dear students has entered me at RateMyProfessors.com, and my first rating is, um, positive:

[Read more...]

What If Jesus Never Claimed to be Divine? [Questions That Haunt]

Questions That Haunt Christianity

I’ve received some fantastic questions in the last couple weeks (you can submit your questions here). I’m jazzed about seeing the discussion around each of them, including this one from Andrew:

In the Gospel of John, Jesus makes many confident self-proclamations (conservative Evangelical’s favorite verses which seemingly demonstrates the exclusivity of Jesus). Now, I’m sure that claiming to be God in 1st century Judiasm is a really big deal; however, how is it that none of these self-proclamations make it into any of the synoptic gospels? Is it possible that Jesus never made these self-proclamations? If not, how does this effect our understanding of Trinitarian theology in the gospel accounts?

You respond in the comments. I’ll respond on Friday. See all of the past questions and answers here.


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