August 18, 2020

The latest issue of the Journal for the Study of Paul and His Letters 9.1-2 (2019) is based on a 2018 conference held in Belgium about the Pastoral Epistles. It has a very good list of contributions and studies on issues related to authorship, gender, theology, and more. JERMO VAN NES The Pastoral Epistles: Common Themes, Individual Compositions? An Introduction to the Quest for the Origin(s) of the Letters to Timothy and Titus JENS HERZER Narration, Genre, and Pseudonymity: Reconsidering the… Read more

August 16, 2020

Hi everyone, On Tuesday 15 Sept 2020, 1915 (Melbourne Time) I will be delivering Ridley’s Annual Leon Morris Lecture on: Jesus among the gods: Early Christology and Divine Ontologies of Antiquity The early church was unanimous that Jesus was “divine,” the question was and remains, in what sense? Many scholars argue that Jesus was considered divine in the sense imagined by ancient ruler cults, where there was a spectrum of divinity, and divine status was merely awarded based on displays… Read more

August 15, 2020

A while back a friend asked me my definition of “biblicism.” It gave me cause to think things over afresh about Scripture, hermeneutics, sources for theology, and authority. I’d define biblicism like this: Biblicism is an approach that regards the Bible as the exclusive source for formulating Christian belief and practice with explicit rejection of the need for historical background, garnering wisdom from wider tradition, recognizing the influence of one’s cultural location, and attaining insights from out-group perspectives even as… Read more

August 12, 2020

Luke Timothy Johnson Constructing Paul: The Canonical Paul – Volume 1 Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2020. Available at Luke Timothy Johnson’s two-volume The Canonical Paul has its first installation with Constructing Paul. LTJ writes as a critical admirer and advocate of Paul and he regards Paul as “personally the true heart of the New Testament and [giving] the framework for my self-understanding as a Christian” (2). But Paul and his letters are not self-interpreting or self-describing, they must be constructed, and… Read more

August 9, 2020

Here is a guest post by Max Lee (North Park University) about his book Moral Transformation in Greco-Roman Philosophy of Mind: Mapping the Moral Milieu of the Apostle Paul and His Diaspora Jewish Contemporaries (WUNT 2. Tübingen: Mohr-Siebeck, 2020). The book will appeal to anyone interested in how early Christianity interacted with its Greco-Roman environment. I attempt something grand and ambitious here: to map the moral universe of the ancient Mediterranean world from which both Diaspora Judaism and early Christianity emerged…. Read more

August 6, 2020

The universe of novels about early Christianity that would pass muster with academic scholars is small.  Gerd Theissen’s The Shadow of the Galilean (on Jesus and his followers) and Bruce Longenecker’s The Lost Letters of Pergamum (on the church in western Asia Minor) are solid enough to be used in a New Testament course, and Ben Witherington has written a few short novels in the last few years that reflect his lifetime of research as a leading New Testament scholar…. Read more

August 3, 2020

HUMANS: CREATURELY AND DIVINE? Traditional Theological Anthropology By Joshua Farris There has and continues to be a discussion about the nature of humans as creaturely and divine in the western canon of great books. I am reminded of the classic work Frankenstein by Mary Shelley with its story about the human creation of a human like creature called the daemon. Motivated as it was by the Darwinian view that humans are higher-order evolutionary products of the animal kingdom—i.e., creatures once again…. Read more

July 31, 2020

Timothy Beale The Book of Revelation: A Biography. Lives of Great Religious Books. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2018. Available at This book by Timothy Beale is a fun and readable exercise in reception-history. It is a fun ride into how Revelation has inspired also sorts of apocalyptic fantasies and expectations. Beale starts out discussion hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia, which fear of the number 666. He also notes debates over the canonicity of Revelation in the early church and how many feminists think the… Read more

July 28, 2020

Stephen G. Dempster  Micah  THOTC. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2017. Available at By Dr. Jill Firth This commentary on Micah was written in Cameroon, where wealth and poverty are strongly juxtaposed, and injustice in the courts, corruption and a prosperity mindset mirrored the setting of Micah in the seventh century BC. Dempster was challenged as an affluent Westerner, and also concerned for the development of a social conscience in the growing evangelical church in Cameroon. The introduction covers the Prophet… Read more

July 25, 2020

Barbara E. Reid  Wisdom’s Feast: An Invitation to Feminist Interpretation of the Scriptures  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2016. Available from By Dr. Jill Firth “Come, eat of my bread and drink of the wine I have mixed.” Barbara Reid uses the invitation of Woman Wisdom in Proverbs 9.5–6 as a lens for accessing her feminist readings of Old and New Testament texts. Reid is professor of New Testament at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, and a Dominican Sister of Grand Rapids…. Read more

Browse Our Archives