Biblical Studies Carnival 164

Here it is, the Back-to-School Biblical Studies Carnival for September 2019 (#164 if you are counting).

I have been the curator of the Biblical Studies Carnival since August of 2012 when Jim Linville stepped down as the Keeper of the List. Over the last seven years many bloggers have moved on to other things (ie., real life). Quite a few regular biblical studies blogs are now silent or post rarely. Mark Goodacre has posted a few times in 2019 (after an entirely silent 2018), but noting in September. Dr. Jim’s thinking Shop and Near Emmaeus has been taken over by spammers.

Yet there is still some life out there in the Biblioblog world. Three new hosts are lined up for the next three carnivals, with Jim “King of the Carnival” West doing the first one 2020. In this month’s carnival there are at least a half-dozen bloggers I have not read before, a few of those have been around for a while and a few are new.

Here are the upcoming hosts for the rest of 2019:

I would love to start filling in a few hosts for 2020, so contact me at to volunteer to host a carnival. They are fun to do, and will draw attention to your blog.

Old Testament

The busiest biblioblogger of the month was Claude Mariottini:

Next month’s carnival host Gary Greenberg offered a short piece on “A Genesis editing error? Separating the second and third days of Creation”.

Clark Bates at ExeJesus asks “What’s a Christian to do With Leviticus?”  This is a new blog for me, and I must admit I misread the title and thought this was one of those conservative fundie lost his faith type blogs (ex-Jesus), but that is the opposite of the case.  Clark also posted The Epistle to Diognetus and Why I Disagree with the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. “The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy fails the believer and the skeptic when it affirms doctrines like inspiration and inerrancy, but necessarily links them to a particular body of texts (the autographs) and I believe that this Article of the Statement should be reworded if not rejected.”

Another new blog for me this month is Cripplegate (you need to visit and read the explanation for the name). There are five pastors blogging on the site and it is very well done. Eric Davis, Is the Rod of Proverbs Literal or Metaphorical?  From the conclusion: “Parents can be assured that God is not asking them to treat their child with abuse or a lack of love when they administer the rod biblically.”

Bill Barrick on Samson and Gaza’s Gates, recalling his 1976 article, “Samson’s Removal of Gaza’s Gates,” Journal of the Near Eastern Archaeological Society 8 (1976): 83–93. is quickly becoming a favorite website for me. Although not a biblioblog in the traditional sense, they have some excellent scholarly articles. For example, Norma Franklin’s Megiddo’s Stables: Trading Egyptian Horses to the Assyrian Empire.

At The Gospel Coalition, Nancy Guthrie interviews Stephen Um on Teaching Micah.  It is a podcast, but there is a transcript for those of you who are still reading things.

Doug at Liturgica has an interesting piece on the use of the Old Testament by Christians, Arguing over the Old Testament. “The early Christians, increasingly living all over the Mediterranean, and losing touch with many aspects of their Jewish background and heritage, simply borrowed Jewish collections of books and made them their own. Christian use of these books, together with the way in which the early rabbinic movement started to rebuild Judaism after the Roman destruction of Jerusalem, meant that the synagogues started to reject them. Increasingly Judaism retreated to the core Hebrew books, and abandoned these Greek books to the churches.”

Observatório Bíblico has a review of Römer, Gonzalez, and Marti, Représenter dieux et hommes dans le Proche-Orient ancien et dans la Bible. Actes du colloque organisé par le Collège de France, Paris, les 5 et 6 mai 2015. (Leuven: Peeters, 2019). The book is in French and the review is in Portuguese. The book is about the function of representations of divinity and humans: What are the different ways of making the gods visible and what are the specific functions? The book is available for free from the University of Zurich, along with 308 volumes of the Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis series.

New Testament

Evie Gassner, How Jewish Was Herod? at TheTorah.Com.

Alex Finkelson at Scribes of the Kingdom has a nice post on Israel and the gospel of the kingdom. Alex is hosting the December 2019 Biblical Studies Carnival (due January 1), so be sure to check out his blog. He has another post asking “Did the disciples see the son of man coming in his kingdom on the mount of transfiguration?”

Ian Paul posted on two parables in Luke, The parables of the lost in Luke 15 and Can we read of the Unjust Steward in Luke 16 with irony?

Lydia McGrew, The realism of Jesus’ dialogues in John. This is from a blog I have not noticed before although it has been around since 2007, What’s Wrong with the World: Dispatches from the 10th Crusade. She says, “the implication that the dialogues in John appear artificial through an overly pat consonance between question and answer, misunderstanding or interruption, and further explanation rests on cherry-picked data.”

The Amateur Exegete Podcast discussed Dirty Hands, Clean Food (Mark 7:1-23; Matthew 5:17-42, 15:1-20; Galatians 2:11-16).

Anne Kim has a fascinating article on Hebrew or Aramaic Loan-Words: 4 Canonical Gospels and 8 Non-Canonical Gospels. She says “This post concludes the recent series studying Hebrew and Aramaic loan-words in various documents that are commonly referred to as gospels, whether inside or outside the New Testament. I approach the study of these documents as an exercise in data analysis, employing computerized methodology whenever possible to give the most objective results that I can manage.” Here is the rest of the series:

Candida Moss has an article in the Daily Beast on the literacy of Jesus: Could Jesus Read and Write? As you might expect, Chris Keith is featured in the article. She cites Keith in her conclusion: “I have no doubt that Jesus was a powerful and effective teacher; he was, in fact, so effective that he managed to convince some people that he was a scribal-literate teacher even though he likely wasn’t!”

Michael Kok did several posts on Acts, including

James McGrath did a Paul APB, a mini-carnival of Pauline studies. Hopefully he will continue the series in the future.

David Turner, Ephesians, Social Media, and Biblical Community. David says, “Being a part of the community of the King has nothing to do with how many followers we have on social media or how prominent we may be in a local congregation.” Great point, but still have more twitter followers than he does.

Graham Ware, Pastor of Centre Street Baptist Church has a sermon tape (I guess we are calling them podcasts now) on Titus and 1 Timothy, A Trustworthy Word (part 1 and part 2).

Marg Mowczko discusses 3 reasons why it’s a woman, not all women, in 1 Timothy 2:12. She argues “1 Timothy 2:11-15 probably refers to a particular couple” and Paul “offers corrections (1) to the woman’s behaviour in verse 11-12, (2) to her teaching in verses 13-14, and (3) to her concern about salvation in verse 15.”

Ian Paul offers a selection from his new Tyndale commentary on Revelation “What is Michael doing with his angels in Revelation 12?”

One of my students translated a Reading Acts post into Chin/Hakha for his own blog, so if you read Chin/Hakha (spoken in Myanmar), check out Zeiruang ahdah Saul nih Jewish Khrihfa arak hrem hna?  His blog is one of the few apologetic blogs this language, maybe the only one.

Doug at Liturgica posted on Writing and reading the New Testament, “early Christianity was determinedly literary.”

New Testament Textual Criticism

Peter Gurry has a short note on Correcting Text und Textwert in Eph 5.22.

Amy Anderson describes her Pied-Piper Teaching Techniques, moving “students from no interest in Greek at all to enthusiastically transcribing manuscripts on the VMR.”

Tommy Wasserman shares some New Images of Papyrus 967 (Ezekiel Portion).

Peter M. Head summarizes Evidence for Codex Alexandrinus in Egypt.

Theology and Church History

The Non-Alchemist wrote a lengthy essay On Biblical Violence (Spoiler: they do not like it).

Scott Fritzsche, When I Was Hungry You…Modern Progressive Social Gospel.

Jordan Standridge, God Doesn’t Need You.

Peter Mead on preaching the other people in the Bible.

James McGrath has a nice roundup combining music and Biblical Studies, Belshazzar and Other Scripture in Song (+1 for the Johnny Cash reference). He also posted James 4:13 and Whovian Marcionism, not sure if I should file this under New Testament Church history or pop culture. James says “If you didn’t get the joke in the title of this post, that means you didn’t click through and read the transcript of the podcast.”

Book Reviews

Charles Savelle shared a link to the Journal of Inductive Bible Studies 6, edited by Fredrick J. Long. The highlight is an article by David R. Bauer, “Streeter Versus Farmer:  The Present State of the Synoptic Problem as Argument for a Synchronic Emphasis in Gospel Interpretation.”

Miroslav Volf/Matthew Croasmun, For the Life of the World (Brazos Press, 2019), reviewed by Spencer Robinson at Spoiled Milks. Spencer also reviewed the second edition of David deSilva’s Introducing the Apocrypha (Baker Academic, 2018) and Gordon McConville’s Apollos commentary on Deuteronomy (IVP Academic, 2002).

Eric H. Cline, Three Stones Make A Wall: The Story of Archaeology (Princeton, NJ:  Princeton University Press, 2017), reviewed by Jim West. Jim also has a quick overview of Jan Assmann, Achsenzeit: Eine Archäologie Der Moderne.



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