Paula Fredriksen: Israel’s God is “Jewish”

Paula Fredriksen, Paul: The Pagans' Apostle (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2017), 115. Israel's god, in Jewish tradition, stands at the apex of humanity. The other elohim bow down to him; he alone is supreme. But his universality is ethnically inflected: this god chooses Israel from among all the other nations, setting them apart... Continue Reading →

The Weekly Roundup – 2.7.20

You didn't want it, ask for it, or need it, but nevertheless the Weekly Roundup has returned! Andre Gagne (PhD, Université catholique de Louvain/Université de Montréal) posted the first in a series on eschatology entitled "Unraveling the 'End Times,'" complete with that charming Canadian accent we've all come to love in our neighbors to the... Continue Reading →

Michael D. Coogan: Hard Pressed to Identify A Distinct Israel

Michael D. Coogan, The Old Testament: A Historical and Literary Introduction to the Hebrew Scriptures, third edition (Oxford University Press, 2014), 228. The cumulative evidence, then, suggests that the Israelite confederation was composed of groups of disparate origin, including Canaanites. What would have motivated such groups to join Israel? One factor could have been the persuasive power... Continue Reading →

Michael D. Coogan: The Importance of Nonbiblical Evidence

Michael D. Coogan, The Old Testament: A Historical and Literary Introduction to the Hebrew Scriptures, third edition (OUP: 2014), 28. Yet despite undeniable chronological and geographical discontinuities, the literary, religious, and institutional traditions of the Levant, including ancient Israel, are best understood as part of a cultural continuum that, allowing for local particularities, was consistent and... Continue Reading →

The Weekly Roundup – 10.4.19

The September 2019 Biblical Studies Carnival is here and was put out by Phil Long, the curator of the carnival in general. There's a lot of good stuff to be found so I won't waste my time going through it all. Click on the link and enjoy! And if you're a blogger who would like... Continue Reading →

So I decided to host my first livestream discussion and did so with Chris H., a brilliant guy who has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of the Hebrew Bible and its relationship to Ancient Near Eastern cultures. We talked about the Gospel of Mark, the Pentateuch, the Canaanite pantheon, textual criticism, the Sea Myth, and so... Continue Reading →

The Weekly Roundup – 6.21.19

@andrewmarkhenry of the YouTube channel Religion for Breakfast recently published a short video on the number 666 that appears in Revelation 13:18. Following most scholars, Henry notes that the number is likely an example of gematria, the practice of using the numerical values of the letters in one's name to come up with a value... Continue Reading →

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