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My New Course for the Great Courses

Among other things, this semester I’m working on a new course for The Teaching Company (also known as The Great Courses). This will be my eighth course with them. The other seven have all (with one exception) been 24-lecture courses, with each lecture at 30 minutes. So too will this one. Doing these courses is a great privilege and a terrific experience. What I especially appreciate about them is that they reach many thousands of people who may not otherwise have expert-level access to the material covered in them. And I think that when it comes to issues related to religion – and Christianity in particular – that’s really important. We have enough ignorance in the world as it is, and anything that we can do to combat it is all to the good. If you aren’t familiar with the Great Courses, you would do yourself a great service to look them up. I myself have watched a number of courses in other fields (e.g. The History of Rome, How to Understand and Appreciate [...]

My New Course for The Teaching Company (The Great Courses)

New Teaching Company Course! A temporary “time-out” from my posting on the Jewishness of Matthew’s Gospel. I received the good news that my new course with the Teaching Company (now called the Great Courses) has become available today.  I am, needless to say, very pleased.   Those of you who have been reading every post for the past few months will remember me talking about the course.  It is called “The Greatest Controversies in Early Christianity.”   As with all the courses I’ve done, this one was 24 lectures in length, each lecture 30 minutes in length.   As I indicated before, these are the topics it covers: Was Jesus Born in Bethlehem? Was Jesus’ Mother a Virgin? Did Jesus have a twin brother, Thomas? Is Jesus in the Dead Sea Scrolls? Did Jesus Preach that the World Would End in his own day? Was Mary Magdalene Jesus’ Closest Disciple? Was Jesus Married? What Did Judas Betray? Did the Jews kill Jesus? Was Pontius Pilate a Secret Christian? Why Did Jesus’ Early Followers Claim that He Was Raised from [...]

2017-12-31T21:24:03-05:00June 28th, 2013|Public Forum, Teaching Christianity|

The Greatest Controversies

So I am now back from D.C. and from recording my 24 lectures for the Great Courses, on “The Greatest Controversies in Early Christian History. “ It was a rugged week! In theory it shouldn’t be that hard to deliver six lectures a day on topics you’re familiar with; but these lectures for the Teaching Company are *so* intense that the energy required is extraordinarily high. I started each day around 9, finished around 4, got a work out in, worked for two or three hours on the next day’s lectures, ate and went to bed and did it again! I’m reasonably zoned now, at the end of it, and am planning to spend the evening in front of a fire, with a martini and a very nice cigar, thinking deep thoughts. But on the course. One of the biggest problems I had involved deciding *which* controversies to pick – which millennia-old ones, which modern ones, which … ones! There were so many to choose from . I ended up with the following list, and [...]

2020-04-03T18:44:53-04:00March 2nd, 2013|Reflections and Ruminations, Teaching Christianity|
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