Oct 11, 2008

Giving Graders a Break

Kari Patterson has a nice post on grading and graders As one who has done a fair amount of grading myself, I can only say 'Amen." Among other things, Patterson notes,

Ways to Bless Your Grader

Consider thanking your grader. Consider letting him or her know that you appreciate the time they put into laboring over your work. Oh, and while you’re at it, consider these few things, they will certainly bless your grader, and might make a difference in your grade(!):

1. Please please please please please don’t tweak your margins or your font size to make your paper longer or shorter. After reading 25 papers, a tweaked margin/font size jumps out and screams, “I can’t follow directions! I refuse to make my paper meet the assignment requirements so I was just lazy and changed the parameters. Please grade me down!” Call me a stickler, but this just bugs me. If the paper is 10-12 pages double spaced in 12 pt. font, write a 10-12 page paper double spaced in 12 pt. font. No more, no less.

2. Save the plastic binder/cover things for saving your children’s artwork. They don’t make the paper any better, they just mess up the stack and make them hard to tote around.

3.Use the appropriate citation form. If your professor says Turabian, use Turabian. This is a really easy way to make your grader happy. I have written “please see Turabian form for proper citation method” a thousand times.

4. Humility goes a long way. I’ll admit, a paper with a cocky author just begs for red slashes. Consider your voice. Better yet, consider your character.

5. Use quotations sparingly. Papers filled to the brim with quotations make you realize that author has no idea what they are talking about and is settling for sticking in other people’s thoughts. Quotations are meant to support your claims. When possible, incorporate material into your own words to demonstrate your comprehension.

6. Lastly, please realize that you have to use a source in order to include it in your bibliography. Listing 25 books is not impressive if you only used 3.

Read the entire post here.

Challenge to N. T. Wright's View of Exile in Second Temple Judaism

David Miller has written an interesting challenge to N. T. Wright's view of exile in Second Temple Judaism. You can read his post

Bock on Engaging the Culture Theologically

Listen to Darrell Bock's recent message at Denver Seminary's Chapel. The topic of his message is engaiging the culture theologically. You can download or listen

Walton on 'Olam

John Walton has a nice post on the Hebrew term 'olam. Read it

Oct 10, 2008

Writing and Publishing New Testament Articles

Nijay K. Gupta has posted some helpful advice on writing and publishing New Testament articles (although his advice would go for the OT as well) for theological journals. You can read it

Oct 9, 2008

New Bibleplaces Photo CD

Todd Bolen has recently announced the production of a new CD.

Views That Have Vanished: The Photographs of David Bivin is a collection of never-before-seen photographs taken in Israel and the surrounding areas in the 1960s. The CD is full of unique shots and beautiful views from a land that has changed dramatically in the last four decades. You can read more about the collection on BiblePlaces.com's companion site, LifeintheHolyLand.com, and see some "then and now" shots here. The featured photographs this month are from Views That Have Vanished as well.

A word about the price. The collection includes more than 700 photographs, yet we are selling the CD through October for only $20 (including free shipping in the U.S.). The CD is worth much more than this—we guarantee it. For less than 3 cents a photo, you get everything in high-resolution jpg format and PowerPoint files, with notes by David Bivin and me. Two "Then and Now" presentations were a late addition and a bonus to the collection. The CD is so packed that we had to put one of the "Then and Now" presentations online, because we did not want to leave out anything else (the link to that presentation is on the CD).

I got mine today. To order yours just click on the link above

Advice on How to Learn Hebrew

Charles Halton has posted a one page sheet of sound tips on how to learn Hebrew. Download the pdf

Is the Bible Sexist?

A story in the TimesOnline by Bess Twiston Davies states,

. . . new research into Biblical women shows that the majority receive positive or matter-of-fact write-ups. Words such as "blessed", "righteous" "outstanding" and - of course - "beautiful" crop up in descriptions of 60 of the Bible's 175 female characters, according to research from The Bible Society.

Read the entire article here. Thanks to Claude Mariottini for pointing this article out.

Witherington on Hermeneutics

See Ben Witherington's post entitled, "Hermeneutics-What is it, and why do Bible Readers need it?"

Oct 8, 2008

Is Your Preaching Helpful? - An Assessment Tool

Carey Nieuwhof has posted some interesting thoughts on ways to assess the helpfulness of sermons. He offers the following two criteria.

Content can be helpful if it:

  • Brings a 'new' truth (didn't know that) or discarded truth to light.
  • Brings a fresh angle to a truth and makes people see God in a fresh light.
  • Reminds people of a truth they know, affirming or correcting their direction.
  • Shows the relevance of truth in current culture and life.

Application is helpful if it:

  • Provides a practical step or steps people can follow to put it into practice in the next 24 hours.
  • Shifts thinking deeply enough that people can't think of things in the same way again (paradigm shifting).
  • Shows how a particular truth will change how we live in our time and culture.
You can read his entire post here.

Oct 7, 2008

Free Downloads of ICC Commentaries

Charles Halton has provided a helpful link to free downloads of ICC commentaries and other commentaries. These volumes are the older ones that are now out of copyright. Check it out here.

Oct 6, 2008

Critique of the Deuteronomistic History Theory

The N.T. Wrong blog has an interesting critique of the Deuteronomistic History Theory. You can see it

City of David Website

See this interactive
website on ancient Jerusalem. Thanks to Stephen Bramer for the link.

Mounce on Etymology

Bill Mounce has a nice discussion on etymology. Read it here.

A Second Temple Sarcophagus Discovered in Jerusalem

Second Temple Period inscribed with the words “the son of the high priest” has been discovered in Jerusalem. The story and a picture can be found here.

Oct 5, 2008

Review of Exum's Song of Songs

Claude Mariottini has a review of Cheryl Exum's recent commentary on
Song of Songs. You can read it here.