"When Jesus calls Herod Antipas a 'fox' (Luke 13:32), most modern European readers will automatically think this means he considered Herod to be particularly clever or craft....The same association would naturally have occurred to a Greek reader in the 1st century. In Greek literature, the fox is proverbially a crafty animal. In Jewish literature, however,... Continue Reading →

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"The 'Amalgam Jesus' idea boils down to little more than hand waving. It is a vague and grudging admission that there may be some historical kernels in the story, but a rather muddle-headed attempt to keep this from becoming an acceptance that there was most likely a historical Jesus. As such, it is not so... Continue Reading →

"For atheists, I would say your life is not meaningless even if you no longer believe you are for something like a hammer is for hammering nails- or even if you believe the universe is absurd! Just because you are not an instrument of someone else’s will, it does not follow that you cannot live... Continue Reading →

The Death(s) of Judas

In light of a recent blog post by a certain pop-apologist,[1] I thought it might be appropriate to lay out a brief case for seeing the two accounts of Judas Iscariot’s death in the New Testament (Matthew 27:3-10; Acts 1:18-19) as contradictory. To begin with, let’s consider each passage in turn and then compare them... Continue Reading →

"To be clear, some religious people evaluate their subjective experience as a piece of the evidential pie without taking this strong of a stance – but I want to address those who attempt to build atop the 'unshakable' ground of religious experience.  The epistemology illustrated creates a host of problems.  If taken seriously, it is... Continue Reading →

"What would lead people to make all this stuff up – all of it – from scratch? Not just embroidering or adding to existing stories about an existing person, but inventing all of the above, including the bits that clearly work against their purposes? So far, I have not heard an adequate explanation for this.... Continue Reading →

It’s gotten all mixed up, you see, as it was bound to after thousands and thousands of years of dogma and tradition. Religion doesn’t spawn morality. Intelligence spawns morality,which inevitably gives birth (in intelligent enough species) to religion.Now, some people find that religion helps hone and focus their morality, that it gives their morality a purpose... Continue Reading →

In this post you will find two things: a paper and a presentation. The paper is entitled "The 'Conservative Bible Project': The Interplay of Ideology and Translation. Here is the abstract I wrote for it: Those of a more socially, politically, and theologically conservative persuasion have long lamented what they have perceived as “liberal” ideology... Continue Reading →

"Through the identification with Bartimaeus and subsequent minor characters, the reader is encouraged to move beyond faith in Jesus and his power toward a more faithful acceptance of the demands and values of Jesus." - Joel F. Williams1 MARK 10:46-522 46 And they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples... Continue Reading →

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