June 20, 2019

Across the Gospel tradition, a trio of siblings who reside in Bethany make several highly significant appearances. Lazarus gets most of the attention, perhaps understandably, not always being singled out as possibly the author of the Fourth Gospel, but because he is central to a story in which he is raised from the dead, which was bound to draw attention. But his sisters do not deserve to be neglected, and they are also said to be close friends of Jesus…. Read more

June 19, 2019

I have been benefiting from audiobooks to no end, and I have been podcasting more than I’ve been listening to podcasts, I say to my shame, since I believe that we should listen unto the podcasts of others as we would have others listen unto ours. (On that topic, I will be taking a break from podcasting, or at least doing so less frequently, during these summer months, but the podcast will return to its usual place and time around… Read more

June 18, 2019

This call for papers just came to my attention from the Journal of Religion, Film, and Media: JRFM 2020, 6/1 CALL FOR PAPERS Science Fiction and Religion Even more than other film genres, science fiction movies confront viewers with societal problems and make experimentation with other models possible. Science fiction can thus be connected to explorations of religion, faith, and belief. Does a machine (a robot, a computer, an android, or a ship) have a soul? What about the concepts of determinism and… Read more

June 17, 2019

The Eighth International East-West Symposium of New Testament Scholars is part of the international outreach efforts of the SNTS to support global education in New Testament studies. This particular conference took place at Caraiman Monastery in Busteni, Romania and focused on New Testament anthropology. I found it a wonderful experience, and shared photos while there – the scenery was breathtaking, in addition to the conference itself being directly helpful to my research. In this post, I want to recap some… Read more

June 16, 2019

I was asked a while back about the notion that Matthew’s Gospel presents a “third way” between passivity on the one hand and violent resistance on the other. This viewpoint gets mentioned from time to time, but still seems not to be as widely known as it deserves. I have long suggested that a backhanded slap would be something reflecting a power difference, rather like the way a lord might strike a servant in an episode of Downton Abbey. But… Read more

June 15, 2019

The call for papers below is likely to be of interest – and the journal Transformative Works and Cultures is one that most people who share my interests in popular culture and fandom ought to follow, shall we say, religiously… Special issue of Transformative Works and Cultures: Fan Studies Pedagogies (deadline 1/1/20) The expansion of fan studies as an academic field, and the growing visibility of fandom and fan activities in popular culture, have led to more instructors using fannish activities… Read more

June 14, 2019

Even if I did not teach a course on the Bible and music, even if I did not have a growing research as well as teaching interest in the intersection of religion and music, I would probably have shared this work with you. I discovered Ståle Kleiberg’s music through the Naxos Music Library, I believe. I’ve been listening constantly to his music since that happened, and when I saw that he has a treatment of the story of David and… Read more

June 13, 2019

I watched most of Rachel Held Evans’ funeral as it was made available on YouTube, and I found some thoughts her sister shared to be inspiring, but also challenging to a common trope in Evangelicalism which says “God has no grandchildren.” I’ve repeated that saying, I think, on more than one occasion. I know I assented emphatically to the sentiment. But Rachel’s sister talked of believing on behalf of someone who cannot at that moment believe, of hoping on behalf… Read more

June 12, 2019

This week’s ReligionProf Podcast features Jessica Reed, who is a colleague of mine at Butler University and a poet whose work explores the realm of science through poetry in ways that are fascinating and profoundly moving, illustrating the range of ways that we as human beings can engage with and explore knowledge of the natural world and ourselves and our place in it. I highly recommend that you buy her book World, Composed. You won’t regret it! It is a… Read more

June 11, 2019

The Christian faith is about redemption – or at least, it is supposed to be. But in our era, the word Christian itself is in need of redemption. As Miguel De La Torre wrote recently, “We are a nation that has made humanitarian aid a crime, and has made fidelity to the Bible a felony.” But those who have done that have done so not thinking it is an attack on Christianity, but in the name of Christianity, thinking that they are… Read more

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