Christopher Rollston Leaves Emmanuel Christian Seminary

Santa (aka my son) gave me a copy of Christopher Rollston’s book Writing and Literacy in the World of Ancient Israel. Today I learned that Rollston has “voluntarily” resigned from Emmanuel Christian Seminary. This is Emmanuel’s great loss; some major players there are too hardened, too narrow, to realize it. Rollston will serve the spring 2013 semester in a Visiting Professorship at George Washington University teaching “Gods and Goddesses of the Ancient Near East” and “Dead Sea Scrolls.” Good for him and good for George Washington. But this is not a permanent position.
He will, of course, find a permanent job. We can debate this or that regarding Rollston’s understand of this of that inscription but we cannot debate that he is among the very few Northwest Semitic epigraphers who consistently expand our understanding and deserve our attention.

2 thoughts on “Christopher Rollston Leaves Emmanuel Christian Seminary”

  1. It is good for Emmanuel that Rollston left. The church and its educational institutions need to follow God and His word not false teachers and their lies.
    Rollston moved into the camp of the false teachers by saying that God was wrong and that His word was in error.
    The church needs to remove such people from its ranks so that the truth may ring out unencumbered. The church is not about scholarship, unless it is presenting the truth in a dignified manner, they are to worry about obeying God and preaching/teaching what He wants
    God is not wrong and His word is not in error and we do not use secular culture to interpret God’s message to the world, neither ancient or modern.

  2. Not knowing anything about this controversy or the scholar in question (and not a HuffPo reader), I happened to attend Dr. Rollston’s lecture at the Nov 2012 SBL. He gave a brilliant paper on Ezekiel that had important implications for my own studies in a different specialty. I was so impressed that I followed up with a check on his whereabouts and an email of appreciation. I was surprised to discover a scholar of his caliber teaching at such a conservative school. I’m not religious, and one does not usually expect first class work from a Christian institution so far outside the mainstream. It made me reflect that perhaps my presumptions were wrong, maybe honest scholarship was indeed possible in that context. Oh well. The silver lining is that Dr. Rollston is sure to find a position at a decent school, unencumbered by theologyarchaeolgy & co, who do not have the faintest inkling of what research is.

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