Don’t Trust What You Read!

In response to my post yesterday about whether the author of Mark was a Jew, in which I said no Jew would make the claim that Mark does, in chapter 7, that “all Jews” washed their hands before eating — a claim that is simply not true — a couple of astute blog members have pointed out  that there is another text, certainly written by a Jew, the Letter of Aristeas (about the how the Septuagint — that is, the ...

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Your Thoughts on the Blog?

It is difficult for me to know what really “works” on the blog.   On the whole, most things seem to work well: as I’ve reported recently, the blog continues to grow.   We are working toward 7000 members (but I very much want that in six figures!) and this past year we raised on average over $420 a day for charity.  That’s a lot of dosh.  All to the good.

But I’m concerned about the quality of the blog and whether it ...

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My Pod Cast Interview with Sam Harris

On May 1, 2018 I was interviewed by Sam Harris for his podcast “Waking Up.”  Ostensibly the interview was to be about my book “The Triumph of Christianity: How A Forbidden Religion Swept the World” but we covered a wide range of topics, from my autobiography to numerous substantive issues, including the nature of miracles, the composition of the New Testament, the resurrection of Jesus, the question of heaven and hell, the book of Revelation, the End Times, contradictions in the ...

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Hey, They’re Free! Memberships Still Available for Those Who Can’t Afford Them

Do you OR SOMEONE YOU KNOW want a free one-year subscription to the blog (because, for various reasons, you, or the one you know, cannot afford it)?   I STILL HAVE FREE MEMBERSHIPS TO GIVE OUT.   Please ask or encourage someone you know to ask.

Here is the original announcement from a couple of weeks ago, with instructions about how to obtain one.

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Thanks to the incredible generosity of members of the blog, I am happy to announce that there are ...

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My Research Goals for 2019

I occasionally get asked what I’m “working on,” and it seems like January 1 is a good time to lay out my research goals/directions for the year.  As some of you know, a couple of years ago I decided to cut back and become less busy with research.  That lasted a couple of months.  But, well, it was a *nice* couple of months.  Now I’m back in over my head – but enjoying that immensely as well.

I have four major ...

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Blog Year in Review, 2018

Here on this New Year’s Eve I would like to reflect for a minute on the last calendar year of the blog, our seventh year of operation. By nearly any metric, I would say it has been a very good year indeed.

For just about all the users of the blog, of course, the primary interest is to read what scholars say about the subject areas that we cover, which are narrow, in one sense, in that they deal almost exclusively ...

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Free Memberships for Those Who Need Them!

Thanks to the incredible generosity of members of the blog, I am happy to announce that again this year there are a limited number of free one-year memberships available.   These have been donated for a single purpose: to allow those who cannot afford the annual membership fee to participate on the blog for a year.   I will assign these memberships strictly on the honor system: if you truly cannot afford the membership fee, but very much want to have full ...

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Another Chance: Donating Free Memberships

In years past, when I’ve solicited donations to provide free year-long blog memberships to people in need, who really would love to be on the blog but simply cannot afford it because of personal circumstances, I’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support.  For one reason or another that has not happened as much this year.  There have been a number of you who have donated, and for that I’m deeply, deeply grateful.  But the numbers are serious down – ...

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Gift Memberships 2018!

It is already December (sigh….) and we are now blasting from one holiday to the next.  For the occasion, I want to open up a holiday giving option that can help out people who really want to be on the blog but cannot afford the membership fees.

As many of you know, for the past five of years, thanks to a number of generous donors, we pulled this off in a big way.  It has happened in two stages.   It started ...

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Interested in Taking a Trip With Me to Greece and Turkey?

I have just finalized the deal.  I will be giving lectures on an amazing trip to Greece and Turkey this coming June, 2019, with a company called Thalassa Journeys.  The theme is centered around the journeys of the apostle Paul, and is called “St. Paul in the World of Late Antiquity: Civilizations and Faiths in Transition.”

For the trip we go to some of the key places in Paul’s missionary work:  Thessaloniki, Philippi, Ephesus (staying on the Isle of Samos!), Patmos ...

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