Daily Archives: 21 Oct 2019


You have seduced me, Yahweh, and I have let myself be seduced; you have overpowered me: you were the stronger. I am a laughing-stock all day long, they all make fun of me. For whenever I speak, I have to howl and proclaim, ‘Violence and ruin!’ For me, Yahweh’s word has been the cause of insult and derision all day long. I would say to myself, ‘I will not think about him, I will not speak in his name any more,’ but then there seemed to be a fire burning in my heart, imprisoned in my bones. The effort to restrain it wearied me, I could not do it. I heard so many disparaging me, ‘Terror on every side! Denounce him! Let us denounce him!’ All those who were on good terms with me watched for my downfall, ‘Perhaps he will be seduced into error. Then we shall get the better of him and take our revenge!’

A curse on the day when I was born! May the day my mother bore me be unblessed! A curse on the man who brought my father the news, ‘A son, a boy has been born to you!’ making him overjoyed.  May this man be like the towns that Yahweh overthrew without mercy; may he hear the warning-cry at dawn and the shout of battle at high noon, for not killing me in the womb; my mother would have been my grave and her womb pregnant for ever. Why ever did I come out of the womb to see toil and sorrow and end my days in shame?  (Jer. 20:7-18)

Signs of the Times

Stimer Stymied

ETC shares with its many billions of readers news today of the return of 5 papyri to the EES by Mr Stimer.

Thank heaven for Tommy Wasserman.

Evangelicals In America Today in One Photo

This is American Evangelicalism.

Konrad Schmid: Gerhard von Rad’s Interpretation of Genesis 22

Since it’s still von Rad’s birthday I’ll remind you that Konrad uploaded his 2008 Interpretation essay to Academia.edu some time back. Here. It’s still very much worth reading.

From the perspective of Heilsgeschichte, Gerhard von Rad saw clearly that Genesis 22 deals with the possible annihilation of the covenant promise. A fresh approach to Genesis corroborates this view and demonstrates that innerbiblical exegesis has shaped the message of Genesis 22.


Jesus, Deliver Us…

From all these books that apparently MUST have the word ‘Faithfulness’ in the title these days…


Luther, on What Comprises Proper Singing

“Wo aber ein solch faul unwillig hertze ist, da kan gar nichts oder nichts guts gesungen werden. Frölich und lustig mus hertz und mut sein, wo man singen sol. Darum hat Gott, solchen faulen und unwilligen Gottes dienst faren lassen, wie er daselbst weiter spricht, Ich habe keine lust zu euch, spricht der HERR Zebaoth, und ewer speisopffer gefallen mir nicht von ewern henden.”  – Martin Luther*

*From a forthcoming monograph titled Music in Martin Luther’s Theology. Which you should be sure to read.

A Fantastic Piece on Gerhard von Rad

Since it’s his birthday-

Gerhard Von Rad: State Interference and Unflappable Belief in Nazi Germany by Daniel Strecker is intriguing for a number of reasons. First, it’s by a non-theologian. Second, it features interaction with Bernard Levinson’s work on von Rad. And third, it contains the only picture of von Rad I’ve ever seen as a young man.

Strecker begins

Bernard M. Levinson, Professor and Berman Family Chair of Jewish Studies & Hebrew Bible at the University of Minnesota Law School, has recently re-posted Reading the Bible in Nazi Germany: Gerhard von Rad’s Attempt to Reclaim the Old Testament for the Church (read the full text here).  The article, which first appeared in Volume 62 of Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology (2008), explores Gerhard von Rad’s (1901–71) staunch adherence to Old Testament studies despite the challenge of Nazi elements within his theological and intellectual milieu.  Levinson also draws a direct connection between von Rad’ s hermeneutic and the historical circumstances under which he worked, painting a powerful portrait of religious and intellectual conviction in defiance of a totalitarian state.

Read the rest.  Yes do.  With thanks to Bernard for mentioning it on Academia.edu.

The 2020 SOTS Winter Meeting Booking Form and Program

Are now available:

2020 Winter Meeting Booking Form

2020 Programme

2020 SOTS Travel Directions to Jubilee Campus, Nottingham

I hope to see you there.

Call For Papers

University of Exeter, 6 April 2020

This conference aims to explore the varied relationships between biblical texts and
contemporary popular visual media such as sci-fi or fantasy films and TV shows,
comic books and video games. Traditionally considered ‘low culture’, such media have
received an upsurge in popularity over the last decade and have become a major
source of social commentary and individual expression, especially in relation to
religious texts such as the Bible. We welcome scholarly analyses of any aspect of
popular visual culture and biblical texts (including non-canonical texts). We welcome
proposals for 20-minute papers on topics which explore relationships between popular
visual media and the Bible.

Successful papers may be considered for publication at a later date.


  • Video games and the Bible;
  • Comic books and the Bible;
  • Sci-fi and fantasy TV series or films and the Bible;
  • ‘Geek Culture’ and the Bible;
  • Fan fiction and the Bible;
  • Subcultural identities expressed in Biblical remediations or retellings;
  • The portrayal of gender, race, sexuality etc. in popular visual media in relation to
    biblical texts;
  • Biblical texts in/and memes;
  • The Bible and popular user-generated content;
  • Authorial intention and biblical remediations;

    Theoretical frameworks towards popular visual media retellings of the Bible.

Please send abstracts (200-300 words) and a short bio to Dr Rebekah Welton at r.c.welton@exeter.ac.uk and Dr Zanne Domoney-Lyttle at zanne.domoneylyttle@glasgow.ac.uk, no later than December 31st, 2019. For more information.

Gerhard von Rad als Deuteronomiumskommentator

Es ist mir gegangen wie manchem anderen in der Zunft der Alttestamentler: Siewären nicht in dieser Zunft ohne Gerhard von Rads sprachlich-ästhetisch und theo-logisch so beeindruckende „Theologie des Alten Testaments“, die ich als Student imersten Semester durcharbeitete, oder so sollte man eher sagen, verschlang und ge-noß. Aus säkularem Hamburger Elternhaus stammend ohne besondere Affinität zur Bibel und schon gar nicht zum Alten Testament war damit meine Liebe zu ihm ge-weckt und hat bis heute gehalten. Als Schüler des von Rad-Schülers Klaus Kochsind für mich nicht zuletzt bis in meine Dissertation hinein, die mit der Gilgal-Thematik an Gerhard von Rads so wirkungsvollen Essays zum formgeschichtlichen Problem des Hexateuch anknüpfte, Impulse von Rad’schen Denkens prägend ge-worden und geblieben. Nur wenn ich mich in späteren Jahren der altorientalischenund biblischen Rechtsgeschichte zuwandte, nicht zuletzt weil mir die Aufgabe ange-tragen wurde, eine Ethik des Alten Testaments für die Reihe der „TheologischenWissenschaft“ zu verfassen, meinte ich eigene Wege zu gehen, die am Ende, diesversuche ich mit diesem Beitrag zu zeigen, doch mehr von Rad’sche Impulse hatten,als mir bewußt war.

Read it here.

Book Announcement: A Book-by-Book Guide to Septuagint Vocabulary

Looks like it could be a useful tool.

Septuaginta &c.

I am very excited to announce a new book that I’ve produced with my partner in crime, Greg Lanier: A Book-by-Book Guide to Septuagint Vocabulary (Hendrickson 2019). The volume is set to release in December, but it is currently available for pre-order (click on the image).

As many readers will know, while we were both involved in our doctoral research at Cambridge, Greg and I teamed up to produce Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition (Hendrickson 2018). That project has seen a lot of success now that it’s in the hands of Greek-lovers everywhere. But it wasn’t too long after the manuscript was finished for the Reader’s Edition that Greg and I got to work on this new project, the Book-by-Book Guide. The basic idea is pretty simple, but (we hope) very powerful.

Here’s the blurb from the back that explains the book:

This book-by-book vocabulary guide provides an…

View original post 858 more words

Some of Von Rad’s Works

Along with his Genesis commentary, these are on my shelves:

On Gerhard von Rad’s Birth Anniversary

Those who are wise learn from their forebears- even if what they learn is to leave them to the side.  Von Rad, however, can never be left aside.  He stands – even now – as the greatest Everest to grace the theological landscape.  And today is the anniversary of his birth.

Gerhard von Rad was a prominent German Old Testament scholar whose work brought back focus to the Old Testament. He was educated at the University of Erlangen and at the University of Tübingen and later received honorary Doctorates from the Universities of Lund, Wales, Leipzig and Glasgow. He also taught at the University of Jena, University of Gottingen, Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg. The Encyclopedia of World Biography notes him as having “developed the ‘tradition history’ approach to the Old Testament that has dominated the study of the Bible for the last 40 years.” His dissertation was on “Das Gottesvolk im Deuteronomium” (The People of God in Deuteronomy).

“The historical events of his lifetime, including the two World Wars, left their mark on him, and it was not least his detestation for the nazis’s treatment of the Jews, which called his interest for OT forth, and he became a member of the academic world in stead of the clergy. Two fields of research are in a special way connected to his name. He was one of the founders of the traditio-historical method. Being one of A. Alt’s doctoral students, history and the development of traditions always played an important part in his research. The historical credo (Deut 26) and its importance for the making of the Hexateuch has made a great impact on the scholarly world. The other field is OT theology, in which he stressed the theology in the transmission of the biblical traditions, in Vol. I the historical tradition and in Vol II the prophetic tradition. His way of doing Theologie was quite different from the traditional German Old Testament Theology.”

“Von Rad’s views were highly controversial, evoking considerable heat. Many of his theories have not stood the test of time, but it would be difficult to find another person who has contributed so much to the understanding of the Old Testament. It may be that in truth he wrote a history of Israelite religion rather than an Old Testament theology, but he insisted that the Hebrew Bible be understood in the context of the religious life of ancient Israel. That is surely a correct insight.”

Lest we forget…