Daily Archives: 14 Dec 2015

Congratulations To Israel Finkelstein

Who has been added to the membership roll of the prestigious Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities:

Prof. Israel Finkelstein teaches in the archaeologic and ancient Near Eastern civilizations department at TAU, specializing in archaeology of the Levant in the Bronze and Iron Ages and the incorporation of the exact and life sciences into archaeological research and biblical history. Finkelstein is a laureate of the Dan David Prize and received other awards and conducted archaeological surveys and excavations in the Negev, Sinai and highlands. Since 1994, he has been the co-director of the Megiddo Expedition.

Via Joseph Lauer

In America It’s Worse to Tape a Dog’s Mouth Shut Than it Is To Murder an Unborn Child

She can’t (and shouldn’t) tape a dog’s mouth but she’s perfectly within her rights to have an unborn child she bears slaughtered if she likes.  #Mericu.




via bookshout

Luther Loved Galatians

“The Epistle to the Galatians is my dear epistle. I have put my confidence in it. It is my Katy von Bora.” — Martin Luther

Mary? The Most Powerful Woman in the World?

Would someone please explain how?

I Don’t Normally Swear… But This Is Just…

Oh HELL no

Christmas and Star Wars aren’t two things that often go hand in hand – especially in Advent church services. But  at 10am on Sunday 20th December, a special service is set to take place in the Zion Church in Berlin Mitte.

The theme? Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. The service will include scenes from the film with music to match, Berlin Stadtmitte Evangelical Church told DPA on Monday.

There’s something extremely perverse and depraved about pandering to the mob on Christmas and exalting something as stupid as a film to the status of sacramental worthiness.  It’s disgusting.

Let Me Say This With The Utmost Forthrightness

People who attack Mosques or Synagogues are no more Christian than a mole in the ground.  There is nothing of Christ in the perpetrators of violence.  There is nothing of God in crimes of hate.  There is nothing of Christianity in those who malign or insult the practitioners of other faiths.

Jesus didn’t do it and if you do, you are none of his.


Sandy Hook

Because some of us can’t forget, but we’re grateful that the school and its faculty and students are living life and moving forward.  That’s the only way to defeat hate filled terror mongers.  And they need to be defeated, and disarmed.


Proving the old truth- men prefer darkness rather than light.

Leading figures in the Church of Jediism, the religion inspired by the fictional warriors who battle against the Dark Side, have told The Daily Telegraph that the group is signing up more than a thousand new members a day, as excitement builds ahead of tomorrow’s launch of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Uh huh.  I can think of a couple of people who would completely embrace this whilst poo pooing orthodox Christianity.  They blog.

On Reviewing Books, Attempted Intimidation, And Academic Honesty

It’s no secret that i enjoy reading.  And reviewing.  I enjoy doing both because the first keeps me informed and the second allows me to provide other potential readers my take on various scholarly works.

I’m ashamed of neither.  Book reviews are an important, I would say critical aspect of academic work.  Bultmann reviewed books regularly and so did von Rad.  Those two, my academic mentors, felt it was an important task and so do I.

Recently I have been denigrated by a reader who implied that I only write glowing reviews so I can receive other books from other publishers- and that as a clear attempt at intimidation.  This is a scandalous and insulting insinuation and betrays an utter and unforgivable attitude of ignorance concerning my work.  If I read a book, I tell the truth about it as I see it.  I don’t soft pedal reviews any more than I soft pedal social commentary or theological observations.  It’s not who I am.

Truth told, I have been refused books by publishers who have been the recipient of negative reviews.  Some publishers don’t like it when you speak ill of (and thus undermine the sales of) their volumes.  Other publishers, and in my experience the majority of the best ones, are interested in hearing whether or not their books are worthwhile and are happy with whatever review they are sent because they recognize that various volumes are not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’.

Nonetheless, I shan’t sit by silently whilst being demonized simply because the books I review tend to be pretty darned good ones.  I am a sympathetic reader.  If an author doesn’t sin egregiously against the truth, I follow their argumentation to the very end to see if there is something to be learned.  I read every page.  Sometimes twice.  Sometimes thrice. I don’t take shortcuts and I refuse to pander.

If you think otherwise, or imagine, for some weird reason, that I am dishonest as a reviewer, as a scholar, as a person, I invite you to absent yourself forever from this little corner of the internet.  Good riddance to you, and don’t let the door hit you where the Good Lord split you.

As to the remainder- I can promise you now as I have always done that when you see a review here- whether brief or lengthy- you’re getting my honest take on it without regard for consequences.

After all, ask yourself, do I really seem to be the type of person who has an eye to negative or potentially negative consequences for anything I say or write?  Do I?

Two New Linguistic Resources From Brill

The Brill Dictionary of Ancient Greek and the Konzise und aktualisierte Ausgabe des Hebräischen und Aramäischen Lexikons zum Alten Testament have been sent along from Brill for review. Until then- here’s what the publisher has to say about them:

34732The Brill Dictionary of Ancient Greek is the English translation of Franco Montanari’s Vocabolario della Lingua Greca. With an established reputation as the most important modern dictionary for Ancient Greek, it brings together 140,000 headwords taken from the literature, papyri, inscriptions and other sources of the archaic period up to the 6th Century CE, and occasionally beyond.The Brill Dictionary of Ancient Greek is an invaluable companion for the study of Classics and Ancient Greek, for beginning students and advanced scholars alike.

Translated and edited under the auspices of The Center for Hellenic Studies in Washington, DC, The Brill Dictionary of Ancient Greek is based on the completely revised 3rd Italian edition published in 2013 by Loescher Editore, Torino.


2715Die dritte, mehrbändige Auflage des Hebräischen und Aramäischen Lexikons zum Alten Testament (HALAT) von Koehler & Baumgartner erschien zwischen 1967 und 1995. Das Werk behandelt sämtliche Lexeme aus der Hebräischen Bibel, bezieht aber auch außerbiblische Belege und antike Übersetzungen ein und bietet zudem oft ausführliche Sachdiskussionen und umfangreiche Angaben zu (seinerzeit aktueller) Fachliteratur.

Die hier vorliegende Konzise und aktualisierte Ausgabe des Hebräischen und Aramäischen Lexikons (KAHAL) basiert auf HALAT, konzentriert sich aber ganz auf die lexikographische Behandlung der biblischen Lexeme. Die etymologischen Einträge sind auf dem Stand der gegenwärtigen Semitistik neu erarbeitet. Eigennamen werden ohne Etymologie, aber in Umschrift aufgeführt.

My thoughts in due time.

Today’s Free Book of the Day From Logos

I’m not quite sure what the issue is but if you click on the cover of today’s book, or any of them, you’re taken to a 404 error page.  If you click on ‘add to cart’ you go to your cart and the discount is applied.  Today’s book is by BB Warfield.


The Latest Issue of Annali di Storia dell’Esegesi

You can see the contents here.  It may be a journal of interest.   This issue focuses on the Pastorals.

I Howard Marshall’s Video Lectures on Acts

The late Professor I. Howard Marshall (1934-2015) delivered the 1991 Annual Moore College Lectures on the Acts of the Apostles: “A Fresh Look at the Acts of the Apostles”.

Videos of the lectures in the series are available on Vimeo. All five lectures are also available in mp3 audio format (links below). In the first lecture, Prof Marshall reviews scholarship on Acts; the person introducing Prof Marshall is outspoken Sydney bishop, Peter Jensen.

Prof Marshall was the author of the Tyndale commentary on Acts (1980). A book with the same name as the lecture series, A Fresh Look at the Acts of the Apostles, was published by Anzea Publishers in 1992.

Read the rest and see the videos here.