Abnormally, I’ve divided this Biblical Studies carnival into two parts. No, not those two parts. The first part primarily draws on reader input. Every topic and most of the links came as suggestions through the regular nominating process. There were many more nominations for this carnival than I have seen in the past. Thanks! Keep them coming for next month. The hope is that over time or even next month, readers will drive the whole carnival. I did exclude several nominations on the basis that I found them too devotional, promotional, proselytizing, or untimely for this carnival. I did let one slip through because I thought it instructive when compared with a more academically oriented discussion on the same general topic.
The second part of this carnival features a group of posts that I found abnormally interesting but for some reason didn’t attract the amount of interest I think they deserve. No, they’re not all mine. They will be fewer in number than in many recent Biblical Studies Carnivals. Rather than trying and failing to be exhaustive, I focused on those posts that caused an abnormal number of neurons to fire in my brain – not that I agreed with all of them. Others would, no doubt, make other choices.
The View from on High: Not Exactly Tanakh and Not Exactly Christian New Testament
Michael Heiser posted the last of his four-part series of lectures on Jesus and the Old Testament. I must admit I didn’t watch the whole thing. I was a little concerned about what someone who runs a blog called the Naked Bible might do as a closing act. Michael also posted an abnormal series on Biblical Anthropology and the Mind-Body Debate. This is a continuation of Michael’s posts on the more general topic of Biblical Anthropology. Truly abnormal readers might want to compare Michael’s nuanced work with this nominated Bible SEO post. Perhaps I shouldn’t say, but while I had my problems with both discussions, I found one far more interesting and helpful than the other. Can you guess which one? After some trepidation, I decided to include the Bible SEO post because its contrast with Michael’s reflective posts illustrates the difference between academic study and dogmatic presentation.
Thanks to Art Boulet, we were able to read Peter Enns’ review of Greg Beale’s book on inerrancy online. And a rather thorough trashing it is.
Adam Couturier dedicated several kilobytes to Isaiah 5:1-7. He explored the text, genre identification, lexicography (three posts) as well as viticultural practices in the Levant and the use of the passage in the Christian New Testament.
Claude Mariottini wrote a post on God’s Covenant with David and another on The Messianic Expectation of the Old Testament. Both these post are interesting reads and should have stimulated more conversation than they did. And in two other posts, he took up the question of Moses’ speech impediment and his possible left-handedness.
Joel Hoffman favored us with a discussion of the challenge of translating Isaiah. Take a look and see how he met that challenge and then see if you can meet the challenge he gave us.
Archeology and the Ancient Near East
Somewhere upwards of 10,000 bloggers responded to a University of Haifa news release announcing Gershon Galil’s interpretation of the Khirbet Qeiyafa ostracon. Not having my notes handy, I’m unsure of the exact number. Here is a not so random sample of those responders: Chip Hardy, James Tabor, Bob Cargill, Michael Helfield, Polycarp, James McGrath, Doug Mangum, John Hobbins, Chris Rollston, Seth Sanders, Daniel McMlellan, Jim Getz, and Neil Silverman. I even had an evil thought on this. Opinions ranged from those who thought these 50 to 70 glyphs on a broken potsherd proved that Samson slew Goliath (or something very near this) to those who thought it interesting but not such a big deal. My own view is closer to the not such a big deal crowd although I do find it abnormally interesting. That said, every epigraphic discovery is important.
C. Jay Crisostomo wrote “composites” and “keywords”. The first is about composite editions of ancient texts, particularly the Epic of Anzu. Jay reminded us of the importance of understanding the differences between witnesses to the same story. Jay’s observations and similar observations about a large number of ancient texts are important in themselves. They are also important when our concerns turn to the composition and transmission of the various texts of Tanakh. In “keywords”, using Anzu as an illustration, Jay explores the repetition of word in Akkadian poetry.
Charles Halton returned to A Primer on Ugaritic in a post that reviewed M.E.J. Richardson’s review of Schniedewind and Hunt’s teaching grammar. In the course of his comments, Charles touches on both pedagogical methodology and the nature of scholarly reviews.
The Christian New Testament
Glenn Peoples explored text critical and interpretive issues involving John 7:53-8:11 and the woman taken in adultery in the larger context of abrogation of the Law.
James Gregory reviewed Sampley’s monograph, ‘And The Two Shall Become One Flesh’: A Study of Traditions in Ephesians 5: 21-33.
Ekaterini Tsalampouni announced The Proceedings of the International Conference “Paul and Corinth”. Here’s what Ekaterini wrote me about the conference,
In 2007 an international scholarly conference took place in Corinth. Its focus was on the New Testament narratives regarding Paul’s visit to Corinth and his two epistles to the Corinthian congregation. Experts in biblical studies and patristics from Europe and USA participated. Their papers are now published in two volumes. In my blog post one can get some information regarding the contents of the two volumes.
If you’re not familiar with her Ιστολόγιο βιβλικών σπουδών / Biblical Studies Blog, take a look. It’s all Greek to me.
Rick Brannan (Rico) told us about the difference between πλην and αλλα and, while he was at it, posted a translation with notes of Polycarp’s Letter to the Philippians, wrote about translating Jesus’ words and engaged
in sin. Busy man.
Michael Kok reflected on the Gospel of Mark the book and the Gospel of Mark the movie or at least the trailer. He also shared his thoughts on the development of Christology providing a taxonomy of different scholarly views. Not being satisfied with a Gospel as screen play and the most central theological claim of Christianity, Michael took up the debate on whether to describe Paul’s encounter with the risen Christ as a “conversion” or a “prophetic call” and followed that up with a post on Paul the persecutor.
Richard Fellows outlined the case for the Luke of Philemon 24, Lucius of Romans 16:21 and the author of Acts being the same person.
James McGrath reflected on the Documentary Hypothesis and memory. His thought process is abnormally interesting but I’m not sure I completely buy it all. If you haven’t already, see what you think.
Daniel McClellan took to task a 2004 Azzan Yadin paper on Goliath’s armor. John Hobbins elaborated on Daniel’s post. Daniel also provided an interesting and critical footnote on a footnote concerning Exodus 21:6.
John Hobbins suggested that scholars try “A Canonical Approach to Isaiah 5:1-7” but he doesn’t seem completely sure it is doable in the context of Biblical scholarship. I always enjoy pondering methodological conundrums.
Jim Getz pointed out another Dani’il error. In this case, it involved the wrong Ugaritic story rather than confusion between Dani’il and Daniel. But, it’s hard to believe these kind of things happen at such high levels.
Brooke Lester asked where the first main clause in the Bible begins, an abnormal question indeed.
Charles Halton thinks we should read the The Context of Scripture on a regular basis and posted a one-year reading plan to get everyone going. While readingThe Context of Scripture, as Charles also noted, one must recognize, what’s missing, the most important part of Enuma Elish.
While generally not a full contact sport these days, one of the great pastimes is discussing the nature of myth and the extent the word applies to the Bible or some part there of. John Hobbins open this seasons game with “There are (no) myths in the Bible.” Of course, the game has changed from infidels vs. faithful to one definition of myth vs. another. With a little effort one can concoct a definition that renders this blog post a myth and Hesiod’s accounts not. Ooops, for a moment I stopped reporting and started editorializing (again). A number of commenters to Johns post plus Robert Minto, Darrell Pursiful, and Chris Brady gently returned serve. Being primarily a spectator in these matters, I cheered from the sidelines.
Deane Galbraith looked at parallel terms for “parallelomania” and found one but asked for help in finding more.
While perhaps on the fringes of the scope of this carnival, I found Steve Wiggins’ reflections on Janus both a blessing and a curse.
I welcome Paavo Tucker and his מה־יתרון blog to the Biblical Studies Carnival for the first time. Paavo has already provided a number of stimulating posts and reviews. Drop by and say “hi.” Because of my own interests, I found his post “Ancient Mesopotamia in Classical Greek and Hellenistic Thought” through Amelie Kuhrt’s eyes abnormal enough for special reference.
Christian New Testament
John Anderson favored us with an interview with Richard B Hays of Duke University.
April DeConick told us of the Ohio fragments of the Gospel of Judas and linked to Marvin Meyer’s SBL talk on them.
So it ends for this month. You may have noticed by the way I titled this carnival I kicked the problem of carnival numbers down the road. Brooke Lester of Anumma has volunteered to host next month’s carnival. And while I’m not sure this is official I hope all of you will begin submitting your post nominations. If you read a great biblical studies post or write one nominate it right then. That way Brooke or whoever gets the job can build the carnival over the whole month rather than having to do a herculean effort to get it done at the last minute.