It’s tempting to begin this review by repeating my introduction to David Mitchell’s Messiah Ben Joseph review. The details of Middle Ages Jewish messianic hope are surprising and fascinating. One particularly influential text of the time is Sefer Zerubbabel (“the book of Zerubbabel”), and so Martha Himmelfarb has devoted an entire book—Jewish Messiahs in a Christian Empire—to it.
Category: Reviews (page 1 of 33)
It’s sadly all too common to see the women of the Bible given a bad rap in sermons and popular Christian books. Often, the women of Jesus’ genealogy are portrayed as “bad girls” who are included as examples of God’s scandalous grace towards sinners. But are these assumptions correct? Do our modern Western assumptions lead us to misunderstand the Biblical texts? Do we owe these women an apology? VVindicating the Vixens attempts to reexamine the often misunderstood women of the Bible. To achieve this end, Sandra Glahn has gathered a diverse range of female and male scholars from different nationalities, ethnicities, traditions, and even perspectives on women in ministry, who all nonetheless agree we must “revisit what the Scriptures say about some Bible women we have sexualized, vilified, and/or marginalized” (p16).
Regular readers may remember my review of Matthew Bates’ Salvation by Allegiance Alone. After a conversation with the author and some reflection, I realized that some factors in my life affected my review of the book and a few of my critiques were unfounded. I think this book deserves a deeper re-reading but in the meantime I have made some small adjustments to make my review more accurate. The review can be found here.
John Sailhamer did not produce many books, but I’m gradually recognizing the impact that he has made. I’m regularly bumping up against ideas and emphases that were entrenched in his vocabulary; ideas such as composition, intertextuality, Text vs. Event, and Pentateuch 2.0. Considering Sailhamer’s impact and his passing this year, it’s fitting that editors Robert Cole and Paul Kissling would produce a festschrift in Sailhamer’s honor. Those familiar with Sailhamer will recognize the significance of its title: Text and Canon.
As the latest entries for the Story of God series, the 1, 2 & John volumes face an ironic problem. Constantine Campbell recognizes that the Johannines “seem more detached from the biblical narrative than most other parts of the New Testament” (p1). There are many odd features about these letters, but trying to read them in light of the grand story is a challenge. Fortunately for the reader, Campbell has to face this challenge head on.
[Update: 14/03/18. After some reflection and a conversation with the author, I softened my critique a little to reflect my current perspective.] Western Christians exist in a sub-culture of “prepackaged…definitions of belief, faith, works, salvation, heaven, and the gospel that in various ways truncate and distort the full message of the good news about Jesus the Messiah that is proclaimed in the Bible” (p2-3). With this opening volley of Salvation by Allegiance Alone, Matthew Bates is on the offense, and Christianity-lite is in his crosshairs.