Typical Bloggers getting ready for the Carnival

Tim Bulkeley hosted the carnival on his 5 Minute Bible podcast page. Tim featured biblical and theological podcasts, although his hope bloggers would all convert to podcasts for the month (or at least once) did not materialize. Jim West explained How I Became Me… A Horrifying Video and time interviewed Bob MacDonald on his fascination with biblical languages and music. So head over to Tim’s 5 Minute Bible and check out his Biblical Studies Carnival. As most postcasters and youtubers say, be sure to click subscribe.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted a few Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS for May. If you use FlipBoard to read blogs, consider following my Biblical Studies magazine. The Web-based version is good, but FlipBoard is an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs). If you are looking for a more wild biblical studies experience, stop in at r/AcademicBiblical or  r/AskBibleScholars at Reddit. Reddit can be a scary place, but these two subreddits are often quite good for academic discussions (trolls are quickly moderated out of existence).

I do not have a host for June (due July 1) or August (due Sept 1). I plan on covering June unless someone steps up, but I would really like to cover August and October through the end of the year. Karen R. Keen (@Keen_KR) is hosting the July 2018 (Due August 1) carnival. She is taking a little time away from finishing her doctoral dissertation on Israelite ethics and violence in the Old Testament at at Marquette University.

October through December 2018 is still still open, so feel free to volunteer for the fall months as well.  PLEASE email me  (plong42 at gmail.com) or direct message on Twitter (@plong42) to volunteer. You can also leave a comment here with your contact info and I will get back to you. Do not make me beg….

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing.

This short text is sometimes called the Apocalypse of Zosimus or the Story of Zosimus since it features the visionary travels of the virtuous monk Zosimus. Since a critical edition of the text has yet to be published, Charlesworth suggests it is unwise to state a probable date and provenance for the book. The book appears in Greek, Syriac and Ethiopic but it is possible the text goes back to a Semitic source. More recently, Chris Knights considers chapters 11-12 and 14-16 to be a Jewish Pseudepigrapha written before A.D. 850 originally composed in Greek (Knight, 1998, 92-3).

The book was preserved by Christians and has obvious Christian glosses. While the book has limited value for the study of the New Testament, it is an interesting parallel to the story of St. Brendan, the Irish monk who twice sailed to the Isle of the Blessed in the fifth century A.D. It is impossible to know if History of the Rechabites was influences by the tale of St. Brenden or vice versa. For details, see Witikowski, “Syriac Apocalyptic Literature,” in The Armenian Apocalyptic Tradition: A Comparative Perspective: Essays Presented in Honor of Professor Robert W. Thomson on the Occasion of His Eightieth Birthday. eds. Kevork B. Bardakjian, Sergio La Porta (Brill, 2014), 670.

History of the Rechabites is an expansion of Jeremiah 35. Jeremiah encounters a nomadic tribe of people known as the Rechabites who drink no wine and live in tents because of a vow their forefather had made. In canonical Jeremiah, this tribe is a model of faithfulness in the last days of the kingdom of Judah. In this apocalypse the tribe now resides on the Island of the Blessed Ones. A holy man by the name of Zosimus spends forty years fasting in the desert asking to see the Island of the Blessed. His prayer is finally heard and an angel escorts him over a gigantic sea. An animal of some kind takes him the rest of the way onto an island where he meets a naked man who claims to be one of the Blessed.

The Blessed Ones take Zosimus in and teach him their background including a few stories about Jeremiah and Josiah’s sons in the last days of Judah. A wicked king attempts to force the Rechabites to break their vow by forcing them to drink wine, but God himself protected them and brought them to this island. The people living on the Blessed Island know all about people in Zosimus’ world. They are aware how wicked they are and they pray for them. The Lord announced to these Blessed Ones the coming of the Word Incarnate through the Holy Virgin.

The Island of the Blessed Ones is like the Garden of Eden. The people are naked, “covered with a stole of glory similar to Adam and Eve before they sinned” (12:3). They eat from the fruits of the trees drink from “the exceedingly good, sweet, and delightful water which comes out to us from the roots of the trees.” These people are aware of the fallen world because “the angels of God dwell with us and they announce to us those things which (happen) among you.” They pray for the “sinners and pagans who are in the world and petition God constantly to restrain his anger” (12:8).

On feast days the Lord rains manna on the Blessed Ones, and they never suffer from sickness or temptation. The Rechabites know when they are going to die, but there is no need to dig graves because the angels conduct them to heaven. The Blessed pray for Zosimus specifically that he could be a guide and refuge. While they pray, a white cloud delivers him back to his home. The text breaks off here, although OTP notes there is an additional four chapters in Greek by a Christian author concerning temptation.

 

Bibliography:

Bosman, H. L. “The Rechabites and ‘Sippenethos’ in Jeremiah 35.” ThEv 16 (1983): 83-86.

Demsky, Aaron. “The Scribal Families of Jabetz”, in M. Garsiel (ed.) Studies in Bible and Exegesis vol. 10 (Shmuel Vargon Vol) (Ramat Gan: Bar-Ilan Universty Press, 2011), pp. 253-261 (Hebrew).

Frick, Frank. “Rechab, Rechabites” in ABD 5:630-631; “The Rechabites Reconsidered,” JBL 90 (1991): 279-287. Frick suggests the Rechabites were a guild of chariot makers, based on the etymology of their tribal name.

Haelewyck, J-C. (Jean-Claude), et al. “Diverse Perspectives on the Manuscript Tradition of the Story of Zosimus,” Oriens Christianus 99 (2016): 1-44

Keown, G. L. “Excursus: The Identity of the Rechabites” in Jeremiah 26-52 (WBC 27; Dallas: Word, 2002) 194-96.

Knights, Chris “‘The Story of Zosimus’ or ‘The History Of The Rechabites’?” Journal for the Study of Judaism in the Persian, Hellenistic, and Roman Period (1993): 235–245.

Knights, Chris. “Towards a Critical Introduction to ‘The History of the Rechabite,’” Journal for the Study of Judaism in the Persian, Hellenistic and Roman Period 26 (1995): 324-342.

Knights, Chris. “The History of the Rechabites-an Initial Commentary,” Journal For The Study Of Judaism In The Persian, Hellenistic And Roman Period 28 (1997): 413-436.

Levenson, J. D. “On the Promise to the Rechabites.” CBQ 38 (1976) 508-514;

 

 

 

Ruben Rus posted the 146th Biblical Studies Carnival for April 2018 at his blog, Ayuda Ministerial. Ruben has been blogging for a long time and is one of the few pages collecting both English and Spanish resources. You should add Ruben’s site to your regular reading list.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted a few Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS for April.  If you use FlipBoard to read blogs, consider following my Biblical Studies magazine. The Web-based version is good, but FlipBoard is an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs). If you are looking for a more wild biblical studies experience, stop in at r/AcademicBiblical or  r/AskBibleScholars at Reddit. Reddit can be a scary place, but these two subreddits are often quite good for academic discussions (trolls are quickly moderated out of existence).

Next month Tim Bulkeley will host the carnival on his 5 Minute Bible podcast page. This Carnival will be a little different since Tim will focus on podcasts and videos pertaining to biblical studies (although he may include some traditional blogs). Follow the link and offer some suggestions to Tim: what are the best academic biblical and theological podcasts?

Here is the list for the upcoming Carnivals hosts. Please notice the empty dates – I am in desperate need of a few more volunteers for 2018!

  • June 2018 (Due July 1) –
  • July 2018 (Due August 1) – Karen R. Keen (@Keen_KR), who is completing her doctoral dissertation on Israelite ethics and violence in the Old Testament at at Marquette University.
  • August 2018 (Due September 1) –
  • September 2018 (Due October 1) – Jim West, (@drjewest)

The rest of 2018 is still still open, so feel free to volunteer for the fall months as well. PLEASE email me  (plong42 at gmail.com) or direct message on Twitter (@plong42) to volunteer. You can also leave a comment here with your contact info and I will get back to you. Do not make me beg….

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing.

Ain’t no carnival like a Jim West carnival, ’cause a Jim West Carnival just don’t stop.   The 145 Biblical Studies Carnival for February 2018 has been posted at  Zwinglius Redivivus.  Head on over and click all the links. Do not miss Jim’s BiblioBlogger Easter Bunny tribute…or maybe you should miss it.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted an abbreviated Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS for March.  If you use FlipBoard to read blogs, consider following my Biblical Studies magazine. The Web-based version is good, but FlipBoard is an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Upcoming Carnivals hosts are:

I have someone for September, but the other 2018 months are still open. I would like to get those summer months covered, so PLEASE email me  (plong42 at gmail.com) or direct message on Twitter (@plong42) to volunteer. You can also leave a comment here with your contact info and I will get back to you. Do not make me beg….

Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing.

Jacob Prahlow posted the 144 Biblical Studies Carnival for February 2018 at his blog, Pursuing Veritas. Jacob is a veteran blogger who has hosted carnivals in the past, and this one is a fine collection of the best of the biblioblogs on a wide range of topics. He has arranged the carnival into several categories: Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, New Testament, Early Christianity, Theology and Hermeneutics, Book Reviews, and News. So head over to Pursuing Veritas, click all the links and thank him for his hard work. You should subscribe to Jacob’s blog, he posts some very good material there.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted a Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS for February.  Good to see a healthy number of Hebrews posts again this month. If you use FlipBoard to read blogs, consider following my Biblical Studies magazine. The Web-based version is good, but FlipBoard is an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Upcoming Carnivals hosts are:

I have someone for September, but the other 2018 months are still open. I would like to get those summer months covered, so email me  (plong42 at gmail.com) or direct message on Twitter (@plong42) to volunteer. You can also leave a comment here with your contact info and I will get back to you.

Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing.

Bob MacDonald posed the first Biblical Studies Carnival of 2018 at his blog, Dust. Bob has done an excellent job collecting links to biblioblogs on a wide range of topics. Be sure to thank him for his hard work, and click on all his links to read the best and brightest posted in January. In other blogging news, Brian Small posted a Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS.

Bob made two important observations. First, his Carnival was #143, making the next carnival the twelve year anniversary of the Biblical Studies Carnival.  No pressure on our next host,  Jacob Prahlow, who is hosting the next carnival at Pursing Veritas. You can tweet a few suggests to Jacob as the month goes by, @prahlowjacob.

Second, Bob said “without people named Jim, the carnival would be a less interesting place.” Should I change my name to Jim to get more street-cred as a Biblical Scholar?

Upcoming Carnivals hosts are:

I have someone for September, but the other months are still open. I would like to get those summer months covered, so email me  (plong42 at gmail.com) or direct message on Twitter (@plong42) to volunteer. You can also leave a comment here with your contact info and I will get back to you.  If you use FlipBoard to read blogs, consider following my Biblical Studies magazine. The Web-based version is OK, but FlipBoard is an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests.

Follow me on twitter (@plong42), I tweet less than the president.

I have one more book to give out in celebration of the new academic semester. I used Stanley Porter and Andrew Pitt’s Fundamentals of New Testament Textual Criticism in my Greek class last semester. When I could not find my copy on the shelf, I purchased another copy at the now-shuttered Eerdmans Bookstore and promptly found my original copy.

There were seventeen names left in the comments (I deleted  James Snapp, do read his review of the book though). I  randomized the names and uses random.org to generate a winner, this time Ben Brown gets the book.  If you could contact me (plong42 at gmail dot com) with an address I will ship this out ASAP.

Missed the last giveaway? Follow me on twitter: @plong42

I have one more book to give out in celebration of the new academic semester. I used Stanley Porter and Andrew Pitt’s Fundamentals of New Testament Textual Criticism in my Greek class last semester. When I could not find my copy on the shelf, I purchased another copy at the now-shuttered Eerdmans Bookstore and promptly found my original copy.

I reviewed the book when it came out in 2015:

There are a few features which I found helpful which are not common in other textual criticism textbooks. First, Porter and Pitts include a chapter on canon (ch. 2). To a certain extent this material seems extraneous to the method of textual criticism. I am not sure they make a clear connection between their interesting discussion of the development of the canon and the process of textual criticism. A professor could easily omit it without losing the argument of the book, although from my experience students often have questions about canon at this point in their Greek training.

Second, they include two very useful chapters on the development of the Nestle-Aland and UBS texts.  Chapter 12 is particularly good for professors since it describes how to use both the NA27/28 and the UBS4/5. The book is therefore a good resource regardless of the chosen Greek New Testament chose by the professor. The story of how the two major critical editions developed is more than interesting, this section places the activity of textual criticism into its proper place in church history.

Third, the book includes a helpful summary of translation strategies as they relate to textual criticism (chapter 13). The chapter includes lists of the various abbreviations and marginalia of both editions. Page 148 has a photograph of a page from the NA28 Greek New Testament with arrows identifying everything on the page; page 163 does the same for the UBS4. For some students, this chapter alone will be worth the price of the book.

Craig S. Keener liked it too: “This very readable textbook provides a helpful and balanced introduction to text criticism aimed at just the right level for beginning students. It is clear, introduces multiple views, gives good reasons for the approaches it favors, and — an unexpected bonus — offers in two relevant chapters useful, concise introductions to canon formation and translation theory.”  However, James Snapp, Jr. did not like the book. So leave a comment, win the book, read it and decide for yourself.

I will pick the winner on January 31. Be sure to check back in a week to congratulate the winner.

Missed the last giveaway? Follow me on twitter: @plong42

In order to celebrate the beginning of the new semester as well as my forgetfulness in buying duplicate books, I offered a brand new copy of N. T. Wright’s Pauline Perspectives: Essays on Paul, 1978-2013 (Fortress, 2013) back on January 12.  All you had to do to win was leave me your name and mention your favorite Pauline scholar. I noticed James  Dunn and John Barclay did quite well in this informal poll, but the winner said N. T. Wright was his favorite.

I put all forty two comments (after deleting a couple duplicates) into a spreadsheet and randomly sorted them. I think used random.org to generate a a number. The winner of the N. T. Wright book is:

Jared Kusz

Jared made his saving throw and succeeds in adding this book to his library. Get in touch with me and I will get you this book ASAP.  I will have one more book to give away this semester, to be sure to check that out tomorrow, or follow me on twitter @plong42.

The winner of the Robert Gundry book never contacted me: Charles, if you are out there, contact me via email (plong42@gmail.com) or twitter so I can get you this book. If I do not hear from you in a couple of days I will give it to someone else.

I have a brand new copy of N. T. Wright’s Pauline Perspectives: Essays on Paul, 1978-2013 (Fortress, 2013). This 620-page book is the companion volume to Paul and the Faithfulness of God and collects Wright’s most articles on Paul over the last 35 years. Several are previously unpublished exegetical essays on Paul’s theology. These thirty-three articles are essential reading for students of Paul whether you think Wright is a friend or a foe. Ben Witherington III blurbs the book:

“Pauline Perspectives gathers into one convenient place the multitudinous essays and lectures on Paul and his thought world that have come forth from the prolific pen of N. T. Wright during the course of the last 35 years. Here you can see the development of seminal ideas, major themes, and the relentless pursuit of understanding important trajectories in Paul’s thought, ranging from justification to the righteousness of God to atonement to much more. Reading a book like this is like going to a great feast put on by a master chef and discovering there were no ephemeral starters but all meat, and none of it half-baked either, but well worth chewing over and always nourishing. Bon appetit!”

The book is $70 retail (but who pays retail?) I ended up with two copies, so I will celebrate a new academic semester by sending this book to a randomly selected person who leaves a comment below with their name and and the name of their favorite Pauline Scholar.

I will pick the winner on January 23. Be sure to check back to see if the odds were in your favor. If no one wins, I will send the copy to Jim West since he is a huge N. T. Wright fan.

Missed the last giveaway? Follow me on twitter: @plong42

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