Geza Vermes

Now that I have been posting on the Dead Sea Scrolls and the historical Jesus, I would be remiss not to mention  that one of the absolutely great scholars of modern times, one of the world experts on both the Scrolls and Jesus, died several days ago.   Geza Vermes was a formidable scholar.   Of the three major English translations of the Scrolls, it is his that I typically use and prefer.   In the 1970s he began publishing a series of ...

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Back in the Saddle. Sort of….


My plan had been to return to the blog in full force when I got back to the States but, well, I’m a little slow on the uptake.   We got back late Saturday night, and I decided to blow Sunday off.  Actually, I watched the golf tournament all afternoon.   Half way through I started feeling odd.  By the end I wasn’t good at all.   Stomach virus, probably.  Brought it back with me from Israel.  As did several other guys ...

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More in Jerusalem

This has been a great trip.  One of the things I’ve liked about it is that it has been focused on Israel in a number of historical periods as well as in the present; it has not been entirely about Christian and Jewish Holy Sites.  And so, for example, today we did the City of David (that I’ll talk about below), had a grand overview of the Temple Mount (with the Dome of the Rock), walked through good chunks of ...

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Off to Israel

I’m off to Israel first thing tomorrow morning, and will be gone for ten days.  I’ll be on email most days; I’m not sure how much time I’ll have to blog, but I’ll do my best.

So this is an alumni tour for UNC, just over 20 people going (they limited it to that size), along with Sarah and me.  It’s a great deal for me.  On these things the university will send a faculty member who gives a few lectures, ...

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OK, apologies to all 29,475 of you who noticed that I said “astrology” instead of “astronomy” yesterday, and that I dated the earth — not the universe –at 13.8 billion years old.   Mistakes noted!

It was a long day: ten hours of writing and editing, and then the blog.  Yuk!   But, well, at least I know that lots of you were paying attention.   I won’t post your comments if they simply were making corrections this time around…..

I am nearing the finish ...

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Explaining myself….

This post will be on something different for a change.  So my current reality is that every day of the week, for several weeks now, I have either been travelling or working on How Jesus Became God.  Neither activity is conducive to writing posts for the blog.   When I write on the book – as I did yesterday – it usually means going at it intensely all day long, until I’m brain dead, which luckily tends to ...

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Paul’s Christology

A small bit from my now chapter 7:


I have read, pondered, researched, taught, and written about the writings of Paul for forty years, but until recently there was one key aspect of his theology that I could never quite get my mind around.   I had the hardest time understanding how, exactly, he viewed Christ.   Some aspects of Paul’s Christological teaching have been clear to me for decades – especially his teaching that it was Jesus’ death and resurrection that ...

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Seriously off topic….

OK, this is comletely irrelevant to anything related to the blog – especially early Christology, my current topic.   But I thought it was too funny to pass up.   A fellow who lived in my neighborhood, but whom I never knew (to my regret: he sounds like he was a remarkably interesting guy), beloved chemistry professor Dr. James Bonk died Friday at the age of 82, ending his 53-year career at Duke University.

 According to the local newspaper:

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