Daily Archives: 12 May 2018

Psalm 90:12

‎לִמְנ֣וֹת יָ֭מֵינוּ כֵּ֣ן הוֹדַ֑ע וְ֜נָבִ֗א לְבַ֣ב חָכְמָֽה׃

ἐξαριθμήσασθαι τὴν δεξιάν σου οὕτως γνώρισον καὶ τοὺς πεπεδημένους τῇ καρδίᾳ ἐν σοφίᾳ

So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom.

What can be a greater proof of madness than to ramble about without proposing to one’s self any end? True believers alone, who know the difference between this transitory state and a blessed eternity, for which they were created, know what ought to be the aim of their life. No man then can regulate his life with a settled mind, but he who, knowing the end of it, that is to say death itself, is led to consider the great purpose of man’s existence in this world, that he may aspire after the prize of the heavenly calling.  — John Calvin

Rewriting and Reception in and of the Bible

This new volume, in English and German, arrived in early April for review from Mohr.  I’m very excited about it because it is a Festschrift for my very dear friend Mogens Müller.  He’s a wonderful scholar and has long deserved the recognition brought via a Festschrift.  He deserves a celebration.

Die Beiträge dieses Bandes setzen sich kritisch mit der Arbeit Mogen Müllers zu antikem Judentum, der Septuaginta, den Evangelien des Neuen Testaments und der Rezeptiongeschichte der Bibel auseinander und decken dabei ein breites Themenfeld innerhalb der biblischen Redaktion und Rezeption ab. Neuschreibung und Rezeption sind Teil eines fortlaufenden Prozesses, der innerhalb der biblischen Literatur begann, und der sich in der Geschichte der interpretierenden Gemeinden fortsetzt, die die Bibel bis heute auf zahlreiche Arten rezipieren und wertschätzen. Der vorliegende Band möchte die wissenschaftliche Debatte über solch wichtige Themen innerhalb der Bibelforschung voranbringen. Er zeigt, dass man sich mit dem Begriff der Rezeption aus sehr verschiedenen Blickwinkeln und unterschiedlichen hermeneutischen und methodologischen Perspektiven befassen kann, welche alle neue Einblicke in die antiken Texte und deren Nachleben bieten.


Jesper Høgenhaven/Jesper Tang Nielsen/Heike Omerzu: Introduction: Rewriting and Reception in and of the Bible

Part I: Rewriting and Reception in the Bible Ancient Judaism– Jesper Høgenhaven: Fortschreibung und Kanonbildung in der Bibliothek von Qumran: Bemerkungen mit besonderem Hinblick auf Genesis-Kommentar A (4Q252) – Ingrid Hjelm: The Coming of a ‘Prophet like you’ in Ancient Literature – Thomas Thompson: ‘Rewritten Bible’ or Reiterative Rhetoric: Examples from Yahweh’s Garden – Siegfried Kreuzer: New Testament Quotations and the Textual History of the Septuagint

New Testament– Michael Labahn: Die Königin aus dem Süden und ihr Auftritt im Gericht: Q 11,31 oder zur (Wirkungs-)Geschichte einer Begegnungserzählung – Troels Engberg-Pedersen: The Messianic Secret in the Fourth Gospel: On the Fundamental Importance of Mark for John’s Rewriting of the Story of Jesus – Jesper Tang Nielsen: Lukas und Johannes: Szenen einer Beziehung – Frederik Poulsen: A Light to the Gentiles: The Reception of Isaiah in Luke-Acts – Martin Meiser: Torah in Galatians: The Significance of the Reception of the Septuagint

Part II: Rewriting and Reception of the Bible Ancient Times– Martin Karrer: Reception and Rewriting: Beobachtungen zu Schriftreferenzen und Textgeschichte der Apokalypse – Heike Omerzu: Das Petrusevangelium als ‘rewritten Gospel’? Eine forschungsgeschichtliche Erörterung der Rezeption der Kategorie ,rewritten Bible’ in Bezug auf frühchristliche Texte – Tilde Bak Halvgaard: Reception of the Johannine Logos in the Trimorphic Protennoia: The Gnostics and the Bible – Part II – Francis Watson: Reception as Corruption: Tertullian and Marcion in Quest of the True Gospel – Thomas Hoffmann: Everywhere and Nowhere: On the rewritten Bible and Qur’ān – John Strange: Rewriting the Bible in Pictorial Arts: Some Examples and Observations

Modern Times – Christina Petterson: Zinzendorf’s New Testament and the Production of Gender – Halvor Moxnes: Desiring Christ: A Nordic Christology in the Time of Romantic Friendships – Gitte Buch-Hansen: Converting Refugees and the Gospel: Exegetical Reflections on Refugees’ Encounter with Denmark and with the Lutheran Church

The wide ranging interests of Mogens Müller are perfectly reflected in this well conceived and executed Festschrift.  Subject areas like the Septuagint, Ancient Judaism, the Gospels, and how those have been received throughout history fill the work.

I first met Mogens in New Orleans at a meeting of SBL and a few years later when I attended a conference in Copenhagen he graciously allowed me to stay with him and his wonderful wife at their beautiful home.  He is a friend and consequently I am positively disposed to his being celebrated.

I am also positively disposed to this volume because it celebrates his work properly.  Its contributors are experts in the fields for which they present essays and all well acquainted with MM’s contributions.  Of special note are the essays of Hjelm, Thompson, Kreuzer, Engberg-Pedersen, Poulson, Watson, and Moxnes (who in typical fashion for himself is more than willing to shake some cages).

My favorite essay, though, and the one which was most informative (in terms of new facts with which I had previously been unfamiliar) is that of Christina Petterson on Zinzendorf’s New Testament.  Here she describes the Moravians and their Bibles, and the choirs of the Moravian churches, along with the groups of which they were comprised (men, boys, girls, widowers, etc.).  All in an effort to delve into the understandings and implications of gender and social relations in the Moravian community.  Fascinating stuff to be sure.

The volume uses footnotes instead of endnotes (which every scholar I know prefers, i.e., footnotes), has a list of contributors, an index of sources, and an index of modern authors.  It lacks a subject index, but to be fair collections of essays really don’t need one and it also lacks a bibliography of the celebrant, which I think every Festschrift ought to have.  A number of essays are in German and most are in English.  Greek and Hebrew occur often enough and the font used for each language is clear and pleasant.  And, finally, Strange’s contribution features several reproductions of important works of art.

This is a fine collection; much to be appreciated is contained herein and much to be learned by virtually every reader.  It is worthy of its celebrant, who is himself worthy of accolades and appreciation.  It is my hope that students and scholars who have not yet come to know Mogens Müller’s work will be intrigued by what they find here and be led to read the many works which provoked such a positive response.

Go See…

Dead Sea Scrolls stuff!

Go See…

Dead Sea Scrolls stuff!

To Make This a Better Country…

Everyone in this country should be required, by law, to watch

Luther’s Advice During the Peasant’s War

I ask all good Christians to lend their aid and earnestly petition God, that His divine grace would ward off the devil and turn away His wrath from us. For the peasants have become so deeply and firmly hardened in their madness that they neither see nor hear, and neither preaching nor writing does any good; God alone must help, otherwise our action and advice will never bring any end to the misery.

It is no longer the time for preaching, but time for praying; the wrath has begun, and we must ward it off with prayer, as Aaron warded off the [plague] with his censer [cf. Num. 16:46]. I also ask the lords and government for two things.

First, if they win and conquer, I ask that they not be presumptuous about it, but fear God, in whose eyes they, too, are thoroughly culpable. For God does not give them the victory because they are so pious and righteous, but (as Moses says to the children of Israel concerning the godless [Deut. 9:4]) in order that God may punish the peasants’ disobedience and blasphemy, together with all their other sins. Second, I ask that they be lenient to the prisoners and those who surrender, as God is merciful to everyone who surrenders and humbles himself before Him.  — Martin Luther

Don’t Give Hasty Answers or Melanchthon Will Bring the Hammer Down on You

Master Philip examined a student in Anthony Lauterbach’s home. He was a schoolmaster in Stargard, and when he answered thoughtlessly Philip said, “Do not answer so abruptly and burst out so heedlessly, for there are more things we do not know than there are things we know.”  — Martin Luther, Table Talk.

Quote of the Week

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! (2 Tim. 3:1-5)

I Guess they Need to Tidy Up…

The office of the New York Review of Books (small wonder most of their book reviews review crap books- they can’t find any good ones in their reprehensible trash pile…)

photo via facebook

He Had a Weak Stomach, And He Liked to Make up Dates Too…

Fun Facts From Church History