Nov 24, 2018

Reader's Edition of the Septuagint

You can listen here to the two editors talk about the Septuagint generally and the Reader's Edition of the Septuagint specifically.

Nov 23, 2018

Of Books and Blimps

I recently obtained a copy of The Messianic Temple: Understanding Ezekiel’s Prophecy and while thumbing through it I noticed the following statement, "All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner without written permission from the author, except in the case of brief quotations in reviews in magazines, newspapers or broadcast or on the sides of blimps" (my bold).

Clorfene, Chaim. The Messianic Temple: Understanding Ezekiel’s Prophecy. Jerusalem: Menorah, 2005.

Nov 22, 2018

Theological Themes Drawn from the Use of the Old Testament In Romans

"As Romans employs the Old Testament, drawn from diverse canonical units and text-types, in creative combinations, employed in explicit or implicit ways, and using a variety of hermeneutical strategies that range from continuity to discontinuity, what general theological themes are drawn from the Old Testament in Romans? First, Romans focuses considerable attention on the revelation of God, his character and his plan. The Old Testament is used as the foundation for expressing the key themes of salvation, judgment, sin, eschatology, redemptive history, and election, as well as for highlighting God’s character of mercy and wisdom, and the sovereign election and gracious promise. Second, Romans also looks to the Old Testament to shape human response in terms of both faith and ethics. Thus, the Old Testament provides the theological foundation for human awareness of sin (the need for salvation) as well as for human response of faith rather than works for salvation. The Old Testament also shapes human behavior, whether that means living faithfully in the midst of suffering, eschewing revenge, adultery, murder, theft, covetousness, and criticism., while embracing love for one’s neighbor and promoting unity within the Christian community. The Old Testament even provides ministry strategy for the church, whether that is reaching out to the Gentiles or extending the gospel to new regions."

Mark J. Boda, "The Old Testament and Romans:Interpreting the Scriptures Which Instruct and Encourage," in The Letter to the Romans: Exegesis and Application, McMaster New Testament Series, ed. Stanley E. Porter and Francis G. H. Pang, (Eugene, OR: Pickwick, 2018), 159.

Nov 21, 2018

Puns for All

The Paris Review has an article here on puns. The article references some from the Bible and the creative preacher knows the value of a timely pun.

Nov 20, 2018

Average Bible Reading Times

The folks at Crossway have a nice infographic here on the average time it takes someone to read the English Bible. I try to read the Bible through once every year. By God's grace, I have been able to do so twenty out of the last twenty-one years. If you haven't done so, I would encourage you to do so.

Nov 19, 2018

Names in the Book of Ruth

When I teach Ruth, I often note the significance and role that the names of the characters play in the narrative. While I obviously think that such an approach is valid, one needs to exercise a bit of caution as noted by James Schipper below.
Regarding the names of characters and geographic locations in the narrative, critical commentaries, including the present one, often provide information about possible etymologies of these names based on cognates in Hebrew or related Semitic languages. Nevertheless, there is no hard evidence that Ruth’s author was aware of the etymological origins or significance of the names that she or he used, especially if the etymology reflects an Ugaritic cognate and the author lived during the early Persian period, as I tentatively argue. For example, even if one were to explain the origins of Bethlehem as “house pf Laḥmu [a Canaanite deity]” on the basis of Ugaritic cognates known to contemporary scholars, one does know whether Ruth’s author was familiar with this cognate or other possible Ugaritic cognates that I discuss throughout the NOTES. One can be certain, however, that the author of Ruth knew the Hebrew words bêt (“house of”) and leḥem (“food”) since forms of these words occur throughout the book. One could translate Bethlehem as “house of food” (bêt leḥem) on the basis of popular rather than historical etymology. This creates a play on words in that there is a famine in the house of food (1:1; consult comments on 1:1–7a).
James L. Schipper, Ruth: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary, Anchor Bible 24c (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2016), 7.

Nov 18, 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 Robert Barker, Disputed Temple: A Rhetorical Analysis of the Book of Haggai
Reviewed by John Kessler

Laura Copier and Caroline Vander Stichele, eds., Close Encounters between Bible and Film: An Interdisciplinary Engagement
Reviewed by Brandon R. Grafius

Sara Japhet and Barry Dov Walfish, The Way of Lovers: The Oxford Anonymous Commentary on the Song of Songs (Bodleian Library, MS Opp. 625); An Edition of the Hebrew Text, with English Translation and Introduction
Reviewed by Tamara Cohn Eskenazi

Francisco Lozada Jr., Toward a Latino/a Biblical Interpretation
Reviewed by Jacqueline M. Hidalgo

Marvin Lloyd Miller, Ehud Ben Zvi, and Gary N. Knoppers, eds., The Economy of Ancient Judah in Its Historical Context
Reviewed by Yigal Levin

Larry A. Mitchel, A Student’s Vocabulary for Biblical Hebrew and Aramaic: Frequency Lists with Definitions, Pronunciation Guide, and Index
Reviewed by Paul Overland

David Paul Moessner, Luke the Historian of Israel’s Legacy, Theologian of Israel’s ‘Christ’: A New Reading of the ‘Gospel Acts’ of Luke
Reviewed by Greg Carey

Rudolf Smend, Kritiker und Exegeten: Porträtskizzen zu vier Jahrhunderten alttestamentlicher Wissenschaft
Reviewed by James Alfred Loader

Tommy Wasserman and Peter J. Gurry, A New Approach to Textual Criticism: An Introduction to the Coherence-Based Genealogical Method
Reviewed by Jeff Cate

Susan J. Wendel and David M. Miller, eds., Torah Ethics and Early Christian Identity
Reviewed by Joel Stephen Williams