April 7, 2020

 Hugo Méndez (Chapel Hill) wrote a provocative article on “Did the Johannine Community Exist?” JSNT 40.3 (2020) where he questions the existence of a Johannine community because the Gospel of John and the Epistles of John are a forgery! You can read the article at sage in hypertext format. The abstract reads: This article challenges the historical existence of the ‘Johannine community’ – a hypothesized group of ancient churches sharing a distinctive theological outlook. Scholars posit such a community to explain the… Read more

April 4, 2020

Laura Everett Holy Spokes: The Search for Urban Spirituality on Two Wheels  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2017. Available at Eerdmans. Available at Amazon.com. By Dr. Jill Firth When I received this book a year or two ago, I placed it at the bottom of my review pile. I had fallen off my bike years ago, and my last bicycle has already gone to bicycle heaven. I thought Holy Spokes would be a niche book for cyclists, a coterie to which I… Read more

April 2, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a big impact on religious practices and religious communities all over the world (see a great Wikipedia summary here). I’m hearing a lot of news about American churches and pastors openly flouting state requirements for social distancing, lockdowns, and the cessation of public gatherings. The best example is South African-born Pentecostal prosperity preacher Rodney Howard-Browne who’s Florida Church openly flouted lockdown restrictions. Howard-Browne was subsequently arrested, read report at CNN. Fox News reports that NY… Read more

April 1, 2020

Thanks to Eerdmans and Zondervan Academic, here are my two latest books, simultaneously released next week, one about Abraham in Romans and another one about the Bible and Red Heads. Romans: Following in the Feet of the Foreskinned Faith of our Forefather (Eerdmans) – If the title weirds you out, then please read Rom 4:12 in Greek, I had to fight the Eerdmans editorial and marketing team for the title, but I got my way (after a very big dummy… Read more

March 30, 2020

My colleague and boss, Brian Rosner, has a good article over at ABC Religion and Ethics on Coping with coronavirus disappointments: Five lessons from Dietrich Bonhoeffer. First, focus on what really matters. Second, stay cheerful. Third, embrace optimism. Fourth, compare yourself with those less fortunate. Fifth, the believer should walk through their disappointments with God. Rosner concludes Chances are that over the coming months many of us will identify with Bonhoeffer’s disappointments and frustrations in his confinement — albeit for most of us, with the volume… Read more

March 28, 2020

David J. Shepherd and Christopher J.H. Wright. Ezra and Nehemiah THOTC Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2018. Available at Amazon.com By Dr. Jill Firth The authors share an interest in Ezra-Nehemiah, the canonical location of the text, and leadership. The commentaries on Ezra and Nehemiah are by David Shepherd, who also writes a thematic essay on ‘Leadership and Ezra-Nehemiah.’ Christopher Wright contributes two essays, “Reading Ezra-Nehemiah Canonically’, and ‘Reading Ezra-Nehemiah Theologically Today.’ The authors co-write the Preface and Introduction. The THOTC format… Read more

March 26, 2020

Jarvis Williams is an Associate Professor of New Testament Interpretation at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He has just published a commentary on Galatians in the NCCS edited by myself and Craig Keener. Here’s an interview I conducted with Jarvis about Galatians. Jarvis, tell us about your earlier studies on Paul and the atonement. My previous work on atonement in Paul’s theology relates to comparisons with the Jewish martyrological texts found in 2 Maccabees and 4 Maccabees, the… Read more

March 25, 2020

Mignon R. Jacobs. The Books of Haggai and Malachi. NICOT. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2017. Available at Eerdmans. By Dr. Jill Firth Mignon R. Jacobs is professor of Old Testament studies at Ashland Theological Seminary (Ohio), and was formerly Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible at Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena). Her books include Gender, Power, and Persuasion: The Genesis Narratives and Contemporary Portraits (Baker Academic, 2007), and The Conceptual Coherence of the Book of Micah (LHBOTS, 2009). She co-edited Israelite Prophecy and… Read more

March 24, 2020

Cause I had ten spare minutes on my hands and this seemed like a good bit of comic relief for all my biblical studies friends who are stuck in confined spaces. Read more

March 24, 2020

Over at 9 Marks, Jonathan Leeman has an article on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood—Or Christlikeness? arguing that “It has become a common trope to argue that the Bible calls us to Christlikeness, not biblical manhood and womanhood. This is a category error. It undermines Christlikeness by turning it into something abstract, gnostic, idealized, even inhuman. It’s also antinomian.” Hey, I like Jonathan, he’s a leading SBC ecclesiologist, just released a book One Assembly: Rethinking Multisite and Multiservice Church Models that I… Read more

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