A new episode of Glenn Siepert’s What If podcast has been released in which Glenn and I talk about my book What Jesus Learned from Women. Have a listen—if you don’t already this is probably a podcast you’ll want to subscribe to and listen to regularly.
I recently made a guest appearance on Pete Enns’ Bible for Normal People blog. There I explore some points of intersection between my book What Jesus Learned from Women and Enns’ work on the Bible’s humanness.
Christian Feminism Today has a review of What Jesus Learned from Women by Mark Mattison. He’s absolutely fair to insist that, for academics, I need to spell out the methodology underpinning my approach to the historical Jesus in the book and more generally. I already have in mind a follow-up book project that may provide the opportunity to do more of that. On the other hand, I think that it might be sufficient to emphasize the key points: One is that the overall gist of early material is more important evidence than individual snippets of information, providing a crucial guide to how we interpret the individual details. Another is that, while in principle early material is more likely to be authentic, we have documented instances of information being transmitted faithfully for centuries, as well as of invention and reinterpretation at an extremely early stage. With this in mind, I proceed largely through the use of established principles of reasoning, the main differences from some others in the past being that (1) I try to avoid interpreting specific sayings and stories against the grain of the overall impression that supporters and detractors provide us with regarding a figure like Jesus, and (2) I am willing to consider details that I only have in a source centuries later and weigh what it says on its own terms, because the fact that it is the first recorded mention of something that we have does not mean it is the point of origin of the idea. That said, it is important to distinguish between something that just happens to be mentioned in passing in a relatively late source, referred to as though it were widely known, and something that is introduced and advocated for, which suggests that it is indeed something new. There’s a lot more I could say about this, but hopefully these few points are useful.
In case you missed it, here is my appearance on Tripp Fuller’s Homebrewed Christianity podcast. Brian LePort mentioned this in a post, Tripp Fuller talks to Helen Bond and James McGrath. Alas, we each spoke to him separately rather than together, which would perhaps have been even better, but certainly would have been interesting and enjoyable!
If you haven’t read my book yet, can you guess why it mentions something that was also in the news recently, namely that archaeologist found a massive Phoenician grave in which dogs were buried?
Interview with Emily Allsopp about her research on the Hebrew Bible from a feminist perspective
Isaac Soon’s new article in Biblical is open access: “Her Body Healed: ΙΑΤΑΙ in Mark 5:29.” So too is an entire issue of Church History focused on gender and monasticism. Also open access is “Who tempted the woman? Variations of the Edenic episode in Jewish Apocalyptic literature” by E. Macarena García in Christiana Orientalia.
Richard Beck writes on the topic of John’s Christology, “we’re not doing the gospel of John justice if we think that his ‘high Christology,’ John’s more cosmic and mystical Jesus, doesn’t traffic in dualisms. John’s Jesus most certainly does. A high Christology doesn’t necessarily imply nondualism. In fact, John’s high Christology seems to highlight, deepen, and up the stakes of the dualisms. We’re not just contrasting good versus bad moral actions but speaking of a metaphysical clash between Light and Darkness.”
Phil Long on the Feeding of the Five Thousand. See also his follow-up post:
The latest issue of Journal for the Study of the Historical Jesus is out. There are also a couple of articles relevant to this topic in the most recent issue of JBL. See too the article on the daughters of Zelophehad in HTS.
On the historicity of Jesus:
On John the Baptist (the focus of my next big book project):