The Carnival of Errors: Or, How Not to Do Biblical Studies*

This month’s Carnival is a day by day account of the filled to the rafters lunacy rampant on the web when wicked and demonic souls take in hand the Bible and twist it to suit their evil intentions.  The appalling vileness on display will stun, amuse, disgust, and horrify.  It’s my own little version of the fun house but without the fun and just with the freakish.  Enjoy!

yffjj1–  First up, that modern Servetus, Pete Enns, wants you to buy his book on certainty as a sin.  If certainty is a sin, then shouldn’t we reject any certainty that certainty is a sin?  Certainly!  The devil.

2– Also selling his book is the super-arch fiend Marc Cortez!  It’s a book about Christology.  It looks interesting, for the work of an arch-heretic of the Marcionite kind.  Beware, friends, beware!

I couldn't find a pic of a man marrying a computer...

I couldn’t find a pic of a man marrying a computer…

3–  The extremely demonic James Crossley (and demonic because of his unwavering support of Manchester United) wrote a very poignant post in the wake of the death of Terry Wogan.  It’s worth the read.  Even though, as I said, Crossley is the devil.  Why can’t he love Manchester City as the good Lord intends all good people to do?  Need he be reminded that United are called the ‘red devils’?  Repent, James, whilst thou canst.

4– Perhaps the worst (in the sense of being evil, not in the sense of being uninformed- that title goes to NT Wright) of all the historical Jesus scholars, Anthony Le Donne Juan has a post on apocalyptic and cheese! I don’t care what anyone says, cheese makes everything better.  Even apocalyptic.

200_s5– James ‘City Fan‘ Crossley is at it again- being wicked and festooning his formerly glorious and Christocentric blog with the wretched stench of Marxist reprobation.  He writes The next couple of posts will be about the English Marxist historian, Christopher Hill(1912-2003). Hill remains arguably the most famous historian of seventeenth-century England, especially the Civil War(s). For a full discussion of what follows see my ‘Christopher Hill’s World Turned Upside Down’, chapter 2 in Harnessing Chaos: The Bible in English Political Discourse since 1968 (Bloomsbury/T&T Clark, 2014; revised edition with new coming out in April).  Appalling.  Something’s really gone awry in St. Mary’s Twickenworthingtonhamshireville.

Wm__B__Eerdmans_Publishing6– Eerdmans, the least evil of all the biblical/ theological publishers of America (and that’s something!) posted a remembrance of Max Stackhouse, who was one of their authors and who passed away in early February.  It’s a good thing to remember those who have made important contributions to the field.

7– Phil “The Soul Crusher” Long did some thinking about Hebrews 6 and what Baptists call ‘eternal security’.  The good news is that it isn’t as unfortunately uninformed as many treatments on the topic.  The bad news?  You’ll have to read it for yourself for that bit.  I don’t want to spill all the beans on Phil’s anti-Christian views.  Enjoy the discovery at first hand.

francesca8–  A genuinely awful post was posted by Logos on their blog which suggested that reading the Bible in multiple translations was more beneficial and informative than reading it in Greek or Hebrew.  My head exploded and little particles of bone and grit splattered across my screen.  Once I was able to reconstitute I fired off a rejoinder to the folly-nonsense-insanity-madness-evil.  The evil post soiled my mood.  Soiled it.  And caused me to roll my eyes so severely that they are now permanently affixed to the back of my head.

On the other hand, the 8th of February is International Septuagint Day.  So that redeemed the awfulness quite nicely.

KING-JAMES-ONLY-1153968382429–  Someone named James at Biblical Studies Online posted a BBC interview with someone named Christopher Hill about the Bible.  It’s an ok interview as far as BBC interviews with dead people can be called ok.  He didn’t talk about how the KJV descended whole from heaven above so it seems very unlikely that he can really be trusted.  Plus, he was British and none of those people even believe in God much less inspiration.  But, if you want to sharpen your apologetic skills, give it a listen.

10–  The Italian heretics have chimed in with plans for a session at the annual meeting of the Society of Somewhat Tenuously Related to the Bible Stuff That People Are Making Up Just to Write a PhD on a Topic That Hasn’t Been Written About Yet.  It looks like it will be a very interesting session.  You may want to mark it on your calendar (or, for the Brits, write it in your diary).

On an unrelated note…  I’m so very happy to have officially sent off the final volume of the Commentary to the publisher.  I’ve managed to finish the very long project of producing a commentary on every book of the Bible for a general readership.  Whew.  Finally.

eyeroll11e:Clavis- Christian Apocrypha.  It’s evil.   I mean seriously.  The Apocrypha?  That stuff is inspired by the devil ya know, to mislead the gullible and the Methodists and the Episcopalians.  Even more evil is this guy who posted an entry on a newly organized Hebrew Bible Forum at Vanderbilt University organized and chaired by C-L Seow.  There are approximately to be 3 per year and if you’re in the area you should contact Prof Seow and get on the notification list.  The Forum will be great.  The blogger, he’s a wretch and totally depraved.  But still not as totally depraved as Joel Watts.

stupid12–  Jeff Carter, an authentically evil poet, has poem-ized a Texas cross…  It’s very much worth your reading.  Here it is:

As you take your cross to follow me
be sure it is big enough to see,
one exceedingly tall
to amaze one and all-
that’s how Texans prove their piety.

13–  Jason Gardner, an authentic wretch and utterly depraved wicked soul has posted a review of Phil Comfort’s new commentary on the text of the New Testament.  I like Phil.  He’s a good scholar.  His works have always been very helpful.  I’ve met Jason (at SBL).  I can attest that he’s a wicked, wicked, wicked young man.  He is, if it’s possible, as wicked as Joel Watts…  I know, right?!?!

jstor14–  Authentically and truly wicked is the academic extortion perpetrated by companies which take academic work and hide it behind a paywall.  Fortunately, there’s a fix to the problem and every academic in the field of Biblical studies ought to know about it.  And so should their students.

st_valentine15–  More evil than Joel Watts- Chris Tilling has offered a snippet of a new volume he’s reading on the evil topic of ontology.  Seeing is believing… that Chris has gone all whack nut job satanic and attached himself to the pagan philosophers and their wicked and misleading speculations about the nature of being and time.  Pray for him that he find his way back from the darkness of Wright-ianity to the light of Zwinglianism.

16–  Planning to attend SBL in San Antonio?  Then you ought to book your room now before all the inexpensive rooms in the vicinity of the Convention Center are snatched up by evil people (i.e., people who aren’t you).  And while we’re talking about the 16th of February- it’s the anniversary of Melanchthon’s birth.  He wasn’t just a theologian, he was also a brilliant exegete.  Far better than 99% of our contemporaries (because he was in fact a theologian who actually read the Bible and understood it).

978329017865917–  Konrad Schmid (who is by no means even remotely evil- what’s he doing in this Carnival????) has recently written a book on the history of the Faculty of Theology at the University of Zurich.  It’s reviewed here.  You’re evil if you don’t read that book.  Evil.  Evil.  Evil.

18–  More Jesus stuff from the Jesus blog by Brant ‘The Jesus Scholar’ Pitre an evil papist).  On some forum (I think already referenced) where Mike Bird and Bart Ehrman talked about stuff in front of a crowd of evil people assembled at an evil place for an evil purpose.  The forum featured a Friday night exchange between and Bart Ehrman and Michael Bird, followed by an extremely stimulating series of Saturday lectures by Simon Gathercole, Dale Martin, Larry Hurtado, and Jennifer Knust. It was a fantastic weekend.  Sounds horrible.  And horrible.

At least we got to observe the anniversary of Luther’s death.  Otherwise…  Anyway, as Luther put it-  ‘In manus tuas commendo spiritum meum, redemisti me, Deus veritatis!’

19–  This was wretched heretic day with entries on Marcion and the Mandeans both cropping up at the same time.  Sort of a blasphemous double header courtesy farflung and not so farflung purveyors.  Marcion… the first Emergent.  Blah.   Mandeans… the Eastern version of the Pentebabbleists.  Blah.  Happier is Mike Bird’s discussion of the papist pelagianism of a new book on Paul.  Isn’t it amazing how no new heresy has shown its face in 1000 years but instead old heresies crop up and people just think they’re new because they don’t know anything about the history of the Church…

eco20–  Umberto Eco ist gestorben… R.I.P.

21– Sanjay Gupta is very, very excited about Bernie Sanders reading a paper on Paul at #SBL16 (or someone named Sanders.  I don’t really like Paul that much or Pauline scholars because they tend not to bathe.  But I digress.  I like John.  John was a good disciple.  Paul was a terrible evil murderer who, like Luther, just tried too hard to change the color of his leopard’s spots).  The Johannine Lit section and the John and Jesus section are always very nicely done.  Paul?  Blah.  Yes, blah to Paul and to Bernie Sanders.

22–  The bad boys of academic publishing, EJ Brill, have done something that will make even their loudest critics sit up and say thank you.  Something very good indeed.

23–  Hugh Houghton (apparently a someone in the evil world of textual criticism… those people don’t believe in the infallibility of the KJV!!!!!!) has been interviewed on the Evangelical (and not pagan or angry atheistic) Textual Criticism (how dare they criticize texts!!!!!) blog.

tilling24–  TMS (a scholar of no mean skills) has a great little post on the notion of ‘boundaries’ in the Old Testament and their relevance for the present.  Walls are evil.  Just remember that.  Like Donald Trump.  Evil.  I mean seriously, what kind of Christian can really support a man who owns casinos… that have strip joints… where people’s lives are wrecked and families destroyed… all for the sake of satisfying some bizarre intestinal hatred of the Clintons (because, let’s all be honest for a minute, that’s the real reason Trump has supporters amongst the so called Evangelicals).  When your hatred for one candidate blinds you to the evils of another, you’ve lost the plot of the Christian faith.

25–  Tim Bulkeley, evil overlord of the Kiwis, has posted a fairly important essay on the topic of distance learning and it fits here because, of course, all the best educational institutions that offer Biblical Studies also make use of distance education.  Pass it along to your colleagues.

oxford26–  Oxford U has made available, for the lucky devils abiding there, Latin and Greek texts from the early history of Christianity.   Lucky devils.  Devils.  Luciferians….  *mumble in discontent*.  UPDATE:  Oxford have replied as follows to my grumbled discontent:  Sorry, but it’s not our choice to restrict access. It is in the terms and conditions of the subscription license. You are welcome to register as a reader of the Bodleian Library ( You would then definitely be able to access this resource within the library, either on our PCs or from a laptop.  That’s good news for people who live near the University.  I guess that’s something.

download27–  Richard *More Evil Than* Goode has posted a very interesting calendar of events taking place at Newman University- Birmingham that I really wish I could attend.  All of them.  They look amazing.  It’s a shame Britain is so far.  If it were within driving distance I would be there in a second.  Or maybe an hour.  Depending, of course, on how long the drive would be if it were indeed within driving distance.

28–  Christian Brady.  What else do I need to say.  I think you know what it means.  He’s on a rampage on 2 Macc and Hebrews 11.  You’ll wish to read it if you missed it because there’s nothing like a Brady rampage…

29–  William Ross (a student of the extremely wicked James Aitken) has posted a posting on the LXX.  I like the LXX (and don’t tell Aitken but I’m fond of him as well- one of the few people I actually enjoy spending time with who doesn’t make me wish after 5 minutes that I had lost the use of my ears).


The ‘official’ Carnival is hosted by this person.  I don’t know… he looks shady.  Or as the kids say, sketchy.  Can you really trust someone who has some weird Latin word in their blog title?…..

Next month look for more fun right back here.  The theme will be ‘nakedness and sex’ because, really, what else are the reprobates of our day interested in besides that, and sports…

In the meanwhile, enjoy this tweet pic from Phil Long- it’s the best student evaluation comment ever…


*NB- Do note that the whole ‘error’ thing is tongue in cheek. I normally wouldn’t point that out but so many these days are utterly lacking any sense of wit or humor. And yes, I’m looking at you, angry atheists, saber toothed feminists, universalists and unitarians, Brits, the politically correct, and assorted nutbags out and about in cyberspace.