On April 20, 2020, I did a webinar for Oxford University Press. I have published three textbooks with Oxford and the textbook division has started hosting these events, principally for college and university professors and their students, but anyone is welcome to sign up and join in. When they asked me if I’d be interested, I thought it sounded like a great idea; and when they asked what I’d like to do it on, I told them the afterlife. Of course! It’s what I’ve been thinking about and doing all my research on for the last four years or so — not what *really* happens in the afterlife (for that I would need more experience, and I’m not eager to have it at this stage of existence, since, well, it will be my last experience and I won’t be able to write about it — but about where the ideas of the afterlife came from, especially those that have been prevalent for most of the past 2000 years. They entitled the event “Life after Death in the Bible and Beyond.”
Members of the blog and readers of my most recent book will know most of my views about that, but the webinar format makes for a very interesting different kind of experience, much livelier than reading a book or a blog post. At least from my point of view for as the presenter. I summarized the major points in about 15 minutes, and then took questions from those tuning in. That was a bit of a challenge, since there were 640 of them, but the moderator Clare Castro, Marketing Manager for Oxford University Press, took questions in writing either in advance or via Chat, and asked me some of the questions, and I answered them live. The event took an hour.
There were tons and tons of other questions, so this week Clare and I will have to record another session (it won’t be live) where I do some more of those. I’ll probably post that one later on the blog, but for now, here is webinar itself.
If you’re interested in my textbooks for further information on this topic or hundreds of others, they are The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to The Early Christian Writings, Seventh Edition; A Brief Introduction to The New Testament, Fourth Edition; and The Bible: A Historical and Literary Introduction, Second Edition.
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