Mar 24, 2018

The Latest Issue of the Review of Biblical Literature

The latest issue of Review of Biblical Literature is out. Reviews can be accessed by clicking the links below but unfortunately you must be a SBL member.

John J. Collins
The Invention of Judaism: Torah and Jewish Identity from Deuteronomy to Paul
Reviewed by Marvin A. Sweeney

John J. Collins, T. M. Lemos, Saul M. Olyan, eds.
Worship, Women and War: Essays in Honor of Susan Niditch
Reviewed by Bob Becking

Frank Dicken
Herod as a Composite Character in Luke-Acts
Reviewed by Alexander P. Thompson

Courtney Friesen
Reading Dionysus: Euripides’ Bacchae and the Cultural Contestations of Greeks, Jews, Romans, and Christians
Reviewed by J. R. C. Cousland

Robert H. Gundry
Peter: False Disciple and Apostate according to Saint Matthew
Reviewed by Sonya S. Cronin

Jione Havea and Peter H. W. Lau, eds.
Reading Ruth in Asia
Reviewed by Woo Min Lee

Hyun Chul Paul Kim
Reading Isaiah: A Literary and Theological Commentary
Reviewed by Torsten Uhlig

Karl Allen Kuhn
The Kingdom according to Luke and Acts: A Social, Literary, and Theological Introduction
Reviewed by Brian W. Bunnell

Stefan Nordgaard
Possessions and Family in the Writings of Luke: Questioning the Unity of Luke’s Ethics
Reviewed by Thomas E. Phillips

Marion Ann Taylor and Christiana de Groot, eds.
Women of War, Women of Woe: Joshua and Judges through the Eyes of Nineteenth-Century Female Biblical Interpreters
Reviewed by Susanne Scholz

Mar 23, 2018

Preaching the Parables

Although this article on preaching the parables came out last year, I somehow missed it. In any case, I think it provides some Screwtape-like cautions and good advice.

Mar 22, 2018

The Significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls for the Study of the New Testament

I appreciate the caution expressed below by Loren Stuckenbruck in using the Dead Sea Scrolls to shed light on the New Testament (see here for the book section).
The recognition of essential differences between “the New Testament” and “the Dead Sea Scrolls” as collections is enough to demand that we be cautious about attempting to draw any direct lines of connection between or of influence from one to the other. Such lack of caution is especially apparent in comparisons which have centred on some of the following sorts of claims: (a) that this or that figure in the Dead Sea Scrolls can be identified with this or that figure in the New Testament (as proposed, for example, by Barbara Thiering and Robert Eisenman); (b) that this or that idea or practice of “Essenes” or “the Qumran community” gave rise to or is responded to by the same in early Christian communities (so e.g. Brian Capper, Rainer Riesner, Yigael Yadin, and Hans Kosmala); and (c) that some of the instructions in the New Testament were specifically formulated with “Qumran Essenes” in mind, whether adopting them straight out – as in Jesus’ radical instructions on divorce (Mark 10:2-9) and oath-taking (Matt 5:33-37) – or rejecting them – as in Jesus’ directive to love one’s enemy over against those who endorse a view to love their neighbor and hate their enemy (Matt 5:43).
Loren Stuckenbruck, “The Dead Sea Scrolls and the New Testament,” in Qumran and the Bible: Studying the Jewish and Christian Scriptures in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls, ed. Nóra Dávid and Armin Lange (Leuven: Peeters, 2010), 134–35.

That being said Stuckenbruck identifies seven “kinds of contributions Scrolls research can make to our understanding of traditions that circulated through the writings of Jesus’ immediate followers and early Christian communities” (pp. 137–68).

Mar 21, 2018

Eight Questions to Ask in Mentoring

Although this article is written from a business perspective, it does provide some helpful questions to ask in the mentoring process and it wouldn't take too much effort to adapt these to a ministry context.

Mar 20, 2018

Ten Things You Should Know about the Exodus

Alistair Roberts identifies ten truths that you should know about the Exodus here. This is a list of the tend but do read the fuller discussion using the link.

1. The deliverance from Egypt is not the first example of the exodus pattern in the Bible.

2. The exodus is a pattern that can be broken down into many stages.

3. It is an event in which God discloses his identity.

4. The exodus is institutionalized and made foundational for the future self-understanding of the people of God.

5. The exodus and the exodus pattern help us to understand the meaning of and connections between events.

6. The exodus is a basis for prophetic expectation.

7. The exodus provides us with a framework within which to understand the work of Christ.

8. The exodus reveals the unity of Scripture and of the work of redemption to which it bears witness.

9. Both Baptism and the Lord’s Supper draw upon an exodus pattern.

10. The exodus gives us a sense of our place in God’s work of redemption.

Mar 19, 2018

Wipf & Stock Sale

Wipf & Stock is offering 50% off of their entire inventory until April 3. Use the code INV50 during checkout. Note that all sales are non-refundable. You can access the website here or the list of titles here.

Mar 18, 2018

Why You Should Be Reading

I am probably preaching to the choir here, but here is another article touting the benefits of reading.