Category: Second Temple Judaism

Did Jesus Plan to Start a New Religion? Matthew Thiessen’s Answer

“Did Jesus plan to start a new religion, then? No.” – Matthew Thiessen

Jesus in Our Own Image

On the temptation to make Jesus in our own image and likeness.

Two Recent Pieces at

Links to two recent pieces that appeared on

Joel Marcus: What is Mark’s “Abomination of Desolation”?

Joel Marcus, Mark 8-16: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2009), 890-891. The abomination of desolation [in Mark 13:14] is probably related to a desecration that preceded the destruction of Jerusalem. The occurrence that best fits the… Continue Reading “Joel Marcus: What is Mark’s “Abomination of Desolation”?”

Martinus C. de Boer: Angels and Demons

Martinus C. de Boer, Paul, Theologian of God’s Apocalypse: Essays on Paul and Apocalyptic (Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2020), 22. The story of [the] angelic fall is found or alluded to in much of the literature (1 En. 6-19; 64:1-2; 69:4-5; 86:1-6; 106:13-17; Jub. 4:15, 22;… Continue Reading “Martinus C. de Boer: Angels and Demons”

Two Reviews of Paula Fredriksen’s ‘When Christians Were Jews’

Earlier this year I read with great delight Paula Fredriksen’s When Christians Were Jews: The First Generation (Yale University Press, 2018). Without going into great detail, Fredriksen’s work attempts to situate the early Jesus movement in its original Jewish context, specifically as an apocalyptic sect within… Continue Reading “Two Reviews of Paula Fredriksen’s ‘When Christians Were Jews’”

Mark Nanos: Paul’s Beliefs and Judaism

Mark D. Nanos, Reading Paul within Judaism: Collected Essays of Mark D. Nanos, vol. 1 (Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2017), 17. Is it not precisely within Judaism where Paul as well as of the other Jewish and Judean believers in Jesus Christ understood themselves… Continue Reading “Mark Nanos: Paul’s Beliefs and Judaism”

Matthias Henze on Second Temple Literature and Messianism

I recently listened to the May 18th episode of The Bible for Normal People which featured an interview with Matthias Henze (PhD, Harvard University) on the subjects of Second Temple Judaism and the concept of the Messiah. This period of Jewish history is, unfortunately, often ignored by conservative readers of… Continue Reading “Matthias Henze on Second Temple Literature and Messianism”