Jan 23, 2010

Latest Issue of Review of Biblical Literature

The latest issue of Review of Biblical Literature is out. Reviews that may be of interest from a Bible Exposition perspective include:

Roger S. Bagnall
Early Christian Books in Egypt
Reviewed by Larry Hurtado

Adam H. Becker and Annette Yoshiko Reed, eds.
The Ways That Never Parted: Jews and Christians in Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages
Reviewed by Chad Spigel

Bryan D. Bibb
Ritual Words and Narrative Worlds in the Book of Leviticus
Reviewed by Dorothea Erbele-Küster

David Bosworth
The Story within a Story in Biblical Hebrew Narrative
Reviewed by Hallvard Hagelia

James H. Charlesworth
The Earliest Christian Hymnbook: The Odes of Solomon
Reviewed by Michael Lattke

Johann Cook, ed.
Septuagint and Reception
Reviewed by Reinhart Ceulemans

David G. Firth and Jamie A. Grant, eds.
Words and the Word: Explorations in Biblical Interpretation and Literary Theory
Reviewed by Eugene Merrill

Erasmus Gass
Die Moabiter: Geschichte und Kultur eines ostjordanischen Volkes im 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr.
Reviewed by Ernst Axel Knauf

Robert Goldenberg
The Origins of Judaism: From Canaan to the Rise of Islam
Reviewed by Lester L. Grabbe

Michael J. Gorman
Inhabiting the Cruciform God: Kenosis, Justification, and Theosis in Paul's Narrative Soteriology
Reviewed by Sigurd Grindheim

Deborah A. Green and Laura S. Lieber, eds.
Scriptural Exegesis: The Shapes of Culture and the Religious Imagination: Essays in Honour of Michael Fishbane
Reviewed by Lena-Sofia Tiemeyer

Larry R. Helyer
The Witness of Jesus, Paul and John: An Exploration in Biblical Theology
Reviewed by Petrus Grabe

James Allen Hewett
New Testament Greek: A Beginning and Intermediate Grammar
Reviewed by Laurence Vance

Konrad Huber and Boris Repschinski, eds.
Im Geist und in der Wahrheit: Studien zum Johannesevangelium und zur Offenbarung des Johannes sowie andere Beiträge. Festschrift für Martin Hasitschka SJ zum 65. Geburtstag
Reviewed by Michael Labahn

Adam Kamesar, ed.
The Cambridge Companion to Philo
Reviewed by Torrey Seland

Robert Kugler and Patrick Hartin
An Introduction to the Bible
Reviewed by Pieter Venter

Hermann von Lips
Timotheus und Titus: Unterwegs für Paulus
Reviewed by Korinna Zamfir

Eduard Lohse
Das Urchristentum: Ein Rückblick auf die Anfänge
Reviewed by Markus Oehler

Stuart L. Love
Jesus and Marginal Women: The Gospel of Matthew in Social-Scientific Perspective
Reviewed by Esther A. de Boer

Victor H. Matthews
More Than Meets the Ear: Discovering the Hidden Contexts of Old Testament Conversations
Reviewed by Corinne Blackmer

Samuel A. Meier
Themes and Transformations in Old Testament Prophecy
Reviewed by Tyler Mayfield

Lorena Miralles
Marzeah y thíasos: Una institución convival en el Oriente Próximo Antiguo y el Mediterráneo
Reviewed by Leif E. Vaage

Douglas J. Moo
The Letters to the Colossians and to Philemon
Reviewed by Christopher Beetham

Osvaldo Padilla
The Speeches of Outsiders in Acts: Poetics, Theology and Historiography
Reviewed by Deborah Thompson Prince

Chantal Reynier
Saint Paul sur les routes du monde romain: Infrastructures, logistique, itinéraires
Reviewed by Michel Gourgues

Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza
The Power of the Word: Scripture and the Rhetoric of Empire
Reviewed by Keith Burton

Tom Thatcher
Greater than Caesar: Christology and Empire in the Fourth Gospel
Reviewed by Benjamin Reynolds

Fabian Udoh, ed.
Redefining First-Century Jewish and Christian Identities: Essays in Honor of Ed Parish Sanders
Reviewed by Joshua Schwartz

Tor Vegge
Paulus und das antike Schulwesen: Schule und Bildung des Paulus
Reviewed by Jens Herzer

N. T. Wright
Justification: God's Plan and Paul's Vision
Reviewed by V. George Shillington

Jan 21, 2010

Expositional Preaching

"Analysis, exegesis, interpretation, and illustration are all combined in expositional preaching. A correct analysis of the content of the passage, setting forth the main theme in orderly and systematic fashion, is most helpful to both the preacher and the audience. The message will be more efficiently delivered, and more easily understood and remembered if it is properly analyzed. The detailed unfolding of certain statements and expressions in the passage will be essential to a proper understanding of the whole. Likewise, the summarizing of certain doctrinal tenets of the faith will also be vital to the objective of the message. Difficult and major points need to be illustrated simply, in order to make the discourse understandable to all present. The presentation of the whole is your exposition."

Douglas M. White, The Excellence of Exposition (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Borthers, 1977), 101.

Jan 20, 2010

A Pastor's Typical Week

From the latest issue of the Church Leader's Intelligence Report:

Anyone still think pastors only work one day per week? According to a new study by LifeWay Research, full-time senior pastors tend to work 55 hours or more per week, and 42% work 60 or more hours. When including bi-vocational pastors, part-time senior pastors and volunteer pastors, 35% work at least 60 hours a week, and 30% work 50-59 hours. Half spend 5-14 hours a week preparing sermons, while 9% spend 25 or more with just 7% spending less than 5. 30% of evangelical pastors spend 20 or more hours a week in sermon preparation vs. 20% of mainline pastors. Other time-consuming activities include meetings, handling e-mail or e-correspondence, counseling others, or in hospital, home or witnessing visits. More than 70% of pastors spend up to 5 hours a week in meetings with 15% doing so 10 hours or more a week. 30% spend 20-29 hours a week with their families, and 16% report spending 40 or more hours with them. 52% spend 1-6 hours in prayer each week, and the same percentage spend 2-5 hours in personal devotions unrelated to sermon prep. 14% spend an hour or less in personal devotions. 24% watch TV 10-14 hours each week.

Reflections from 1 Corinthians 1:18–2:5 for Preachers and Teachers

Richard Hays offers the following six reflections from 1 Corinthians 1:18–2:5 for preachers and teachers.

1. Paul’s message focuses on the cross.

2. Paul’s message confronts human boasting.

3. The meaning of “wisdom” is controlled by “Christ crucified.”
4. The word of the cross creates a countercultural world for those who are called.

5. The social composition of the church should be a sign of God’s election of the foolish, the weak, the low and despised.
6. The Old Testament texts in 1 Corinthians 1:19 and 1:31 are heard as God’s word addressed directly to the Christian community.

Richard B. Hays,
First Corinthians, Interpretation (Louisville, KY: John Knox, 1997), 37–39.

Jan 19, 2010

Practical Advice on Giving Recognition

Cal Habig has some a nice post offering some practical advice on giving recognition here.

Missions, Ministry, and Acts 20:24

Alan Bandy has a good post related to missions, ministry, and Paul's statement in Acts 20:24. Read it here.

Changes in the NET Bible Blog

Hall Harris announced the following change for the NET Bible blog.

Beginning immediately, the NET Bible Revolution blog will become a team effort! Posts will rotate among various members of the NET Bible Team who work on the NET Bible translation and notes. Preparations are underway for the Second Edition, and some of the posts will concern modifications and improvements to the text and notes for the Second Edition.

This looks like it could be interesting. Read the entire post here.

Key Words in Akkadian Poetry

See Jay Chrisostomo's post on the repetition of key words in Akkadian poetry
here. By the way, what is true od Akkadian poetry is true of poetry in general.

Jan 18, 2010

Investing in Sermon Titles

David Murray has a helpful post entitled "Investing in Sermon Titles." Read it here.

HT: Tim Challies

The Authenticity of Jesus' Use of Psalm 110

Michael Barber has posted three reasons that Jesus' use of Psalm 110 before Caiaphas should be considered authentic here.

Jan 17, 2010

Varner on the Song of the Sea

William Varner has a nice post on the so-called Song of the Sea in Exodus 15. You can access the post here.

Apostolic Decree as Pragrmatic Compromise

Frank Thielman, in discussing the Apostolic Decree in Acts 15:20. 28-29; 21:25, argues that,

". . . the Apostolic Decree more naturally plays the role of a pragmatic compromise. The strict Judean Jews and the believing Pharisees have suffered a sound defeat, b
ut in the decree the apostles and elders offer a few guidelines for softening the practical implications of this defeat. By advising the Gentiles to abstain from meat offered to idols, from the consumption of blood, from strangled animals, and - from sexual immorality, the apostles and elders have made it easier for the most conservative Jewish Christians to associate with Gentile believers. Adherence to these rules would allow scrupulous Jewish Christians to mingle with Gentile Christians around a common table without fear of compromising basic Jewish dietary rules. It would also put to rest fears that mixing with Gentiles might lead to sexual immorality and idolatry as it had in ancient times (Num. 25:1–18)" (Frank Thielman, The Law and the New Testament: The Question of Continuity [New York: Crossroad, 1999], 158).

I tend to agree with Thielman. Furthermore, although Thielman does not get into it here, I would suggest that Ben Witherington is correct in suggesting that the main problem reflected in the four prohibitions is their association with idolatry.