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Moody Bible Boot Camp

Back to my narrative about becoming trained in the Bible (as a prelude to what I started talking about -- why my later technical training actually made me better prepared for writing books for general audiences than my peers who were not at all interested in the technical side of things).  So, I went to Moody Bible Institute – and took that entrance Bible exam – when I was all of seventeen years old.   And it was during my first semester that I decided what I wanted to do with my life. I really, really, really do not advise doing that.  For 99.999% of the human race, it would be a very bad idea indeed to decide how to spend the rest of your life when you’re all of seventeen and can’t even yet order a beer (drinking age back then, in the Pleistocene age, was eighteen) (and anyway, we weren’t allowed to drink beer at Moody) (or smoke, play cards, dance, or go to movies) (really) (and there was a dress code).   But I’m [...]

Sad News: The Passing of Marvin Meyer

Yesterday was a sad day for me and for biblical/early Christianity scholarship.   Marvin Meyer passed away, the victim of melanoma.  He could not have been old – maybe in his early 60s.  He was a superb scholar and one of the most generous, affable, energetic, personable scholars you would ever hope to find.  Marvin was the Griset Professor of Bible and Christian Studies at Chapman University and Director of the Albert Schweitzer Institute I knew about Marvin’s work for many years before I met him.   He was some years older than me and was well established in the field before I showed up on the scene.   I think the first work of his I used was his translation of Coptic Magical Texts.   Coptic is an ancient Egyptian language, in which a large number of important works were translated in antiquity; in many instances, these translations are the only forms of the text that we have available.  This is true of these magical texts that we have, which are fascinating and of real importance for scholars [...]

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