September 25, 2023

For those who were puzzled by my previous blog post, it is a glimpse at what just appeared in the latest preview catalogue of the publisher Humanitas, one of the biggest publishers in Romania and one that specializes in humanities topics like history, religion, philosophy, and biography. My book What Jesus Learned from Women is being published in Romanian, which is a particular delight. You probably know that I taught in Romania for three years and have visited far more... Read more

September 23, 2023

Din catalogul editurii Humanitas, toamna 2023: James F. McGrath pune o întrebare care cu siguranță că îi va scandaliza pe unii cititori. Isus, Fiul lui Dumnezeu întrupat, Învățătorul prin excelență, Atotștiutorul, cel care a venit să-i învețe pe oameni calea mântuirii, să aibă ceva de învățat de la oameni? Și, mai ales, de la femei? Autorul pornește de la premisa că Isus a fost om adevărat, personaj istoric real, împărtășind condiția umană, dezvoltându-se și acumulând cunoștințe ca orice alt om.... Read more

September 1, 2023

If you are connected with me on social media you are probably aware of my book The A to Z of the New Testament which will be in bookshops from October but pre-orders of which will probably ship this month. My advance author copy arrived yesterday (see the photo at the end of this post). The book is designed to be fun, to offer an enjoyable way of learning what scholars know about the New Testament. Remember when learning was... Read more

August 25, 2023

I’ve been doing my best to explore the possibilities and limits of AI text and image creation technologies, as you know. The release of Donald Trump’s mugshot provided a perfect opportunity to some more experimenting with tools like Dall-E and NightCafe. What, I wondered, would it look like if I asked them to produce a mugshot of Jesus. The main thing that prompted that line of thought (other than just the way my mind jumps from one thing to something... Read more

August 22, 2023

As a follow-up to my previous exchange with it, I asked ChatGPT what it would write if asked to provide a purely secular academic commentary on the parable of the Good Samaritan. That seemed a natural and logical place to go next. Here is what it gave me: Certainly, I’d be happy to provide a secular academic commentary on the parable of the Good Samaritan. In this analysis, I’ll focus on the narrative’s literary elements, historical context, and potential ethical... Read more

August 21, 2023

As I have thought about how to respond to and integrate ChatGPT into teaching, I came to realize that I had not previously adjusted my approach to assignments and grading in light of tools like Grammarly. But should I? Just because a tool can help fix grammar doesn’t mean the result is good, unless the tool is used well. So too with ChatGPT in producing anything like an essay. In short, my instinct is to treat ChatGPT and Grammarly the... Read more

August 14, 2023

In connection with my book What Jesus Learned from Women I was interviewed for an article that appeared in the Portuguese magazine Sabado. The title is “As mulheres mais importantes na vida de Jesus.” I thought it might be of interest to share the interview itself, of which only snippets end up being utilized in a given article. So here are the journalist’s questions and my answers: Who were the most influential women on Jesus’s life? Why? How would you... Read more

August 11, 2023

An article on IO9 used the same word I used for the ending of Good Omens Season 2, and since I don’t think that an emotion I felt as a viewer constitutes a spoiler since no plot points are revealed. As Linda Codega wrote, “the ending of season two is heart-wrenching.” The story on the way there is beautiful in so many ways. The show manages to poke fun at religion at its worst while problematizing the notion of genuinely... Read more

August 9, 2023

It is ironic that those whose deceptive marketing strategy is to claim they are “Bible-believing Christians” view denial of the inerrancy of scripture as the root of all heresy. Rejecting inerrancy is something that I did because I recognized that the Bible kept providing me with evidence of its internal diversity and contradictions, and that in refusing to accept that evidence I was elevating my doctrine about the Bible above the Bible itself (which was allegedly supposed to be the... Read more

August 7, 2023

The big academic book about John the Baptist has been submitted to the publisher. It is presumably time to declare my sabbatical over, turn off the automated reply on my email, and consider myself back. How better to celebrate but with song? I’m teaching my course on the Bible and music this coming semester, and one of the things I’ve had as an assignment in the past is the creation of song lyrics. Most of the educators I know are... Read more

Browse Our Archives