Apr 7, 2018

The 10 Most Significant Discoveries in the Field of Biblical Archaeology

Tim Challies' blog identifies the 10 most significant discoveries in the field of biblical archaeology here. As with any list like this one, there could be some disagreement. For example, I would substitute the Pontius Pilate inscription for the crucified man's ankle bone. Nonetheless, this is a solid list.

Apr 6, 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.

Polymnia Athanassiadi
Mutations of Hellenism in Late Antiquity
Reviewed by Evgenia Moiseeva

David J. H. Beldman
The Completion of Judges: Strategies of Ending in Judges 17–21
Reviewed by Victor H. Matthews

Julia Watts Belser
Power, Ethics, and Ecology in Jewish Late Antiquity: Rabbinic Responses to Drought and Disaster
Reviewed by Joshua Schwartz

Ginny Brewer-Boydston
Good Queen Mothers, Bad Queen Mothers: The Theological Presentation of the Queen Mother in 1 and 2 Kings
Reviewed by Laura Quick

Gay L. Byron and Vanessa Lovelace, eds.
Womanist Interpretations of the Bible: Expanding the Discourse
Reviewed by Amanda Mbuvi

Samuel Byrskog, Tom Holmén, and Matti Kankaanniemi, eds.
The Identity of Jesus: Nordic Voices
Reviewed by Eve-Marie Becker

Christoph Markschies
Christian Theology and Its Institutions in the Early Roman Empire: Prolegomena to a History of Early Christian Theology
Reviewed by Joseph Azize

Kevin J. Vanhoozer and Daniel J. Treier
Theology and the Mirror of Scripture: A Mere Evangelical Account
Reviewed by Joel Stephen Williams

Donald Dale Walker
Beyond the Obvious: Doorways to Understanding the New Testament
Reviewed by J. Andrew Doole

Stephen Westerholm and Martin Westerholm
Reading Sacred Scripture: Voices from the History of Biblical Interpretation
Reviewed by Christopher T. Holmes

Apr 5, 2018

Genesis 24:63-64

This article on Genesis 24:63-64 by Rabbi Pete Tobias is interesting. Rabbi Tobias suggests that Isaac's activity described by the Hebrew verb lasu’ach causes Rebekah to fall off of her camel.  He concludes, "So whatever Isaac was doing, when Rebecca saw it, she tumbled, perhaps in amusement, perhaps in alarm." But this seems to be an over-interpretation. First, as the rabbi notes, lasu’ach is a hapax legomenon. So while there is ambiguity as to what exactly Isaac was doing, there is no reason to think that he was doing anything that was amusing or alarming (although it cannot be ruled out either). Second, while Tobias is correct that a literal reading of v. 64 could be, “She fell off her camel,” it seems that Rebekah's dismount is idiomatic (see 2 Kgs 5:21 where the same verb is used). 

Based on the questionable conclusion that Isaac was doing something humorous or alarming, Rabbi Tobias suggests that "many of the Torah’s stories are intended to amuse and entertain a Biblical audience" and that we should not treat biblical characters "with unnecessary reverence." I think the rabbi is correct in these affirmations but not on the basis of Genesis 24:63-64. This might be a good reminder that knowing the languages might cause you to over-interpret a passage.

Apr 4, 2018

NT Textual Criticism Resources

Mark Hoffman has a nice post identifying and interacting with the major digital New Testament textual criticism resources here.

Apr 3, 2018

Sermon Prep

Matt Capps discusses and illustrates his sermon preparation process here. Discussions like these often affirm what I am doing already and give me ideas on how to improve.

Apr 2, 2018

Genesis and Easter

William Barrick has a good post here asking, "What Does Easter Have To Do With Genesis?"

Apr 1, 2018

Free Logos Book for April: Between the Cross and the Throne: The Book of Revelation

The free Logos Book for the Month for June is Between the Cross and the Throne: The Book of Revelation. You can also purchase Grant Osborne's Colossians and Philemon Verse by Verse for $1.99 and Linguistics and Biblical Exegesis in the Lexham Methods Series for $4.99. You can register for a chance win the Lexham Discourse Bundle. For all these offers, go to the Logos' Free Book of Month page here.

He Is Risen!