Biblical Studies

By Phillip Long | The Best of the BiblioBlogs

Contradictions in the Gospels: An Interview with Mike Licona

On April 21 <i>Christianity Today</i> published an interview with Dr. Michael Licona about his new, provocative, and innovative book, <i>Why Are There</i> …

Review: The Book of Isaiah and God’s Kingdom (NSBT)

In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him …

Christianity

Roots of the Rebellion: Zealots and Sicarii

The activity of the Zealots and Sicarii further destabilized the political situation. The name <i>Sicarii</i> comes from a short sword that could be …

Christianity

Two New Greek New Testament Papyri from Oxyrhynchus

Two new Greek NT papyrus fragments from Oxyrhynchus have been identified: one of Ephesians and one of 1 Timothy. These fragments, already assigned …

Ancient History

How to use secondary literature in NT research

As the writer of Ecclesiastes mourns, and as John the Evangelist hints, there is no end to the number of works one might consult for acquiring …

Jesus and Cannabis?

I am quite used to seeing stories about the historical Jesus in the media around Christmas and Easter. It is a good time for the History channel to …

Theology

Roots of the Rebellion: Social Banditry

<b>Josephus, Wars 1.10.5</b> Now Herod was an active man, and soon found proper materials for his active spirit to work upon. As therefore he found that …

Christianity

Economic Knowledge in the Parables

Jürgen Moltmann on lecturing at the beginning of his career

Since my teaching brief now includes more sustained instruction in the Jewish tradition, I’ve been further familiarizing myself with some of its …

Wealthy Women in the First-Century Roman World and in the Church

The events and the epistles of the New Testament are set in the first-century Roman Empire, an ancient world whose culture is alien to those of us …

Theology

Messianic Hopes and the Jewish Revolt

E. P. Sanders contended Judaism in the Second Temple period was not a religion of individual salvation (278). God made a covenant with the people of …

Ancient Rome

Gathering Israel to Their Inheritance

Prior to the Jewish revolt, at least some Jewish writers thought the people of Israel would be reassembled as the twelve tribes of Israel. The …

Book Review: James Dunn, Neither Jew nor Greek: A Contested Identity

<b>Dunn, James. Neither Jew nor Greek: A Contested Identity. Christianity in the Making, Volume 3. Grand Rapids, Mich. Eerdmans, 2016. 960 pp. Hb;</b> …

Theology

John 20:17 – “Do not Cling to Me”?

“Noli me tangere”<p>One of the more difficult lines in the Gospel of John is Jesus’ reaction to Mary: Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to …

The First Witnesses of the Resurrection

According to John 20:1, the first witness to the resurrection is Mary Magdalene, who visited the tomb very early on Sunday morning. Who is this …

The Offense of the Cross

Mark is very brief and concise as he describes the crucifixion. The whole of Mark’s gospel has led up to the first phrase of verse 24, a simple line, …

Peter Defends Jesus in the Garden

At the Last Supper, Jesus predicted the disciples would all fall away, even Peter. Peter, as the leader of the disciples, denies this vehemently! …

Luke 22:41-46 – The Cup of God’s Wrath

Luke 22:41-46 describes this time, and says that Jesus prayed that “this cup be taken from me.” This phrase might be interpreted to mean that Jesus …

Book Review: Douglas Estes, Questions and Rhetoric in the Greek New Testament

<b>Estes, Douglas. Questions and Rhetoric in the Greek New Testament. An Essential Reference Resource for Exegesis. Grand Rapids, Mich. Zondervan, 2017.</b> …

Theology

Book Review: Richard N. Longenecker, Paul, Apostle of Liberty (Second Edition)

<b>Longenecker, Richard N. Paul, Apostle of Liberty. Second Edition. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 2016. 435 pp. Pb; $34.</b> <b>Link to Eerdmans</b><p>Richard …

Theology

Mark 14:3-9 – The Anointing at Bethany

Mark 14:3-9 is the center of yet another Markan sandwich. Jesus is anointed by a woman at the home of Simon the Leper in Bethany. Since the story is …

What is the Roman Imperial Cult?

I have posted on this topic before, usually in the context of the book of Revelation. For example in this post I argued Revelation is a form of …

Ancient Rome

Revelation as Resistance Literature

Despite the fact the book of Revelation is usually mined for what it has to say about future events, it is not a “roadmap for the future.” It is, …

Characteristics of Greco-Roman Religions

Roman religious thought is characterized by the syncretic thinking of the Roman people. They had little imagination and largely assumed the Greek …

Ancient Rome

John 12:9 – Those Palm Branches (Again)

As John Dowden pointed out in a previous comment, only the gospel of John mentions the palm branches. In John 12:13, the Greek, φοινιξ (palm) is used …

Mark 11:1-11 – The Triumphal Entry

Each of the Gospels describes Jesus entering Jerusalem as a “triumphal entry.” This is an event which Christians typically celebrate a week before …

A Biblical Theology of Resurrection in an early Christian Burial

My wife, Aubree, and I recently had a chance to get away for a few days to visit Rome—the Eternal City. It was a great visit and Rome truly is one of …

Theology

John and the Synoptics: Are We Really Still Asking That Question?

Once when discussing my thesis on John’s relationship to Mark, a fellow student enquired, ‘are we really still asking that question?’ And the answer …

“Repent, Repent”

In his new book, <i>How Repentance Became Biblical: Judaism, Christianity, and the Interpretation of Scripture</i>, David A. Lambert argues that repentance, …

Theology