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Jim West cosplaying his favorite reformer

Jim West, the grand old veteran of Biblical Studies Carnivals, posted a fine collection of links at Zwinglius Redivivus. You can follow Jim on Twitter, @drjewest. Jim is off to attend the Zwingli Conference, celebrating Zwingli’s arrival in Zurich 500 years ago, so we will all be treated to photos of his hotel room and the book room for the conference. (Seriously, I live for the book room pics…)

Brian Small had a few Hebrews Highlights for January 2019 at Polumeros kai Polutropos.

Unless I hear from somebody soon, Reading Acts will host the February Carnival, then Spencer Robinson at  Spoiled Milks (@spoiledmilks) has March 2019 (Due April 1).

As you can see there are some gaps in the schedule and there is no one for the rest of the year after (September through December are wide open). I have a few asks out there, but there is still time for you to volunteer as Carnival Host. Hosting the carnival is a great way to draw attention to your work, so consider hosting in the near future.

Seriously….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.

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

In case you have not seen the announcements, Logos Bible Software released a major upgrade at the end of last year. I did a “first look” review of Logos 8 here. There are plenty of new features to justify an upgrade and the software runs much more efficiently than the previous version. Everything runs faster than Logos 7 so the upgrade is well worth getting.

If you upgrade to Logos 8, you can save 25% on any upgrades to Logos 8 and pick five free books. Follow the link and used the code READINGACTS8 and save a little money on the upgrade. But this upgrader discount ends on February 7, 2019. If you do not already have Logos, here is a loophole in the sale. Get Logos 7 Fundamentals for $59 then upgrade to a Logos 8 base package and use the code to save 25%.

As always, be sure to check out the Logos Free Book of the Month. They give away a new book every month and usually have promotional pricing on one or two others from the same publisher. This is a great way to build up your library.

First time host Christopher Scott has posted the Biblical Studies Carnival for December 2018. Christopher collects links from the four categories that I write about: Bible, theology, small groups, and leadership. Head on over and check out what he has for us this month. Veteran blogger Jim West will host the Carnival in January. Jim always mixes up an interesting stew when he hosts a carnival. Here is the schedule for the next few months:

  • January 2019 (Due February 1) –  Zwinglius Redivivus, Jim West,@drjewest
  • February 2019 (Due March 1) –
  • March 2019 (Due April 1) – Spoiled Milks, Spencer Robinson @spoiledmilks
  • April 2019 (Due May 1) –
  • May 2019 (Due June 1) – Claude Mariottini @DrMariottini
  • June 2019 (Due July 1) –
  • July 2019 (Due August 1) – My Digital Seminary, Lindsay Kennedy @digitalseminary

As you can see there are some gaps in the schedule and there is no one for the rest of the year after (August through December). I have a few asks out there, but there is still time for you to volunteer as Carnival Host. Hosting the carnival is a great way to draw attention to your work, so consider hosting in the near future. Seriously….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.

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Bob MacDonald (@drmacdonald) posted the November 2018 bright and early on December 1, and it is a good one. Be sure to check it out and click on all the links. Subscribe to a few new blogs this holiday season. First time host Christopher Scott will take control of the Carnival for the December 2018 carnival (due January 1, 2019).

I noticed that Brian Small posted a notice about the death of Hebrews Scholar Paul Ellingworth, “one of the most prolific contributors to the scholarly study of Hebrews.”  Jim Gordan has a nice tribute to Ellingworth as well.

As of this time, I do not have hosts for any carnivals for 2019. I have reached out to a few newer bloggers as well as previous hosts, but I have had fewer volunteers recently. Bob MacDonald said this about hosting a carnival:

Hosting a carnival is a valuable task. You will be challenged to decide what to include from the several possible source streams that you follow on aggregators, flipboards, social media, blogs, and other news feeds. Just what is Biblical Studies? BS opens up questions that may be disturbing to an established position. Do you follow people that you may disagree with? You may allow some leeway since preachers and theologians of all confessional stripes say they ‘study the Bible’. And you may watch secular blogs and newspapers, for some of them express reception history, whether assumed or critical, from the Bible. As the month progresses, a theme emerges, maybe flippant or serious, not always as expected. Take up the gauntlet.

This is your chance to step up and host a carnival. This is true for veteran bloggers as well as newer academic blogs. Hosting the carnival is a great way to draw attention to your work, so consider hosting in the near future. Seriously….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.

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

I was quite surprised today with a tweet from a former student who bought my book, Jesus the Bridegroom for the Logos Bible Software for $4.99. This is part of the Wipf & Stock sale through Logos which (I assume) runs through the end of November 2018.

Jesus the Bridegroom has been reviewed in a couple of places. Marianne Blickenstaff reviewed the book for SBL’s Review of Biblical Literature (click here to read the review) and Peter Leithart reviewed the book at First Things a bit earlier. Don K. Preston reviewed the book at Amazon, saying he loves “the research that went into this. While Dr. Long’s emphasis is on ‘source’ and my focus is on theology, Nonetheless, I did find this book to be very helpful. I particularly appreciated the linguistic studies, showing the marital language that is used in some texts (e.g. especially Isaiah 4-5) that I had never seen before, and I truly appreciated it. His inter-textual notations were also fruitful. Long’s conclusion that Jesus drew together several strands of Jewish thought, and conflated those strands into a harmonious message, thus, suggesting that Jesus stood well within the framework of a Jewish prophet, is very good”

The book is also available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website (the retail price is $33 but there are discounted copies at Amazon and Wipf & Stock). The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers, but I cannot see them reading the book with the Kindle App on an iPad. Still, the book looks great in Kindle.

Obviously I would love for you to buy a copy, but I know that is not always possible. Here’s how you can help get the word out for me:

  • Buy the book while it is on sale at Logos, it is only $4.99!
  • Request that the book be added to your college, university, or seminary library.
  • Leave a review on Amazon.com. I cannot stress this enough, it is very difficult to get people to leave a review on Amazon, but the sad fact is Amazon reviews count for something in today’s book buying world.

What is the book about? The full title of the book is Jesus the Bridegroom: The Origin of the Eschatological Feast as a Wedding Banquet in the Synoptic Gospels. The book is an edited version of my dissertation. As I was working on my dissertation, people would ask what I was writing on. I usually said “an intertextual study on messianic banquet imagery in the Synoptic Gospels.” After a moment of awkward silence, I clarified: “Jesus said the Kingdom of Heaven is like a Wedding Banquet – what’s up with that?”

The book attempts to study the marriage metaphor / motif in the teaching of Jesus. There are a few places in the Synoptic Gospels where Jesus describes the Kingdom of Heaven as a Wedding Banquet, Matt 22:1-14 and 25:1-13 are the most obvious texts. But there are a few places where Jesus describes himself as a bridegroom, and a marriage metaphor appears in a number of other places. My proposal is that Jesus combined the metaphor of an eschatological banquet with the common Old Testament marriage metaphor and described his ministry as an ongoing wedding banquet to which all Israel is now invited. The long period in the wilderness is over and it is time for Israel to return to her Bridegroom.

In order to make this case, I apply what might be called an intertextual method to traditions or set of metaphors. The “text” in this intertextual study is the Hebrew Bible, but that text was heard by Jesus’ original listeners rather than read. They knew the metaphors because they heard them taught in their homes and synagogues. Jesus used these metaphors because they were current, but by combining them to describe himself, he created a new image of the eschatological age as a wedding banquet.

I first examine the eschatological “victory banquet” motif in the Hebrew Bible, starting with Isa 25:6-8 (ch. 3), the use of the Wilderness Tradition in Isaiah 40-55 (ch. 4), and the Marriage Metaphor in Hosea, Isaiah and Jeremiah (ch. 5).  I trace the development of these three themes through the Second Temple Period in chapter 6, and finally apply that database to the sayings of Jesus in chapter 7.

There are a few things that you will not find in this book. First, I did not cover John’s gospel, although there is much there that can be described as “wedding motif.” My reason for this omission are simple-the dissertation was already too long to include another major section on John’s Gospel! Second, there is nothing in this book on the application of the Bridegroom metaphor to the church. I wanted a study of Jesus’ use of the metaphor, not the (much) later theological development of that metaphor. Again, the reason for this is simply that I was writing a New Testament dissertation, doing “biblical theology” rather than “systematic theology.” I wanted to focus on the teaching of Jesus and the origin of the wedding banquet metaphor.

I would really like to hear feedback from anyone who reads the book – feel free to send me an email to continue the discussion. Thanks!

Biblical Studies Carnival

Jacob Prahlow posted the October Biblical Studies Carnival at his blog, Pursuing Veritas. Jacob has a great collection of links to the best biblical and theological posts over the last month. Jacob often does a “weekly roundup” on his blog and usually points out things I have missed. Head over to the Carnival, browse the links and see what people have been saying this month.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted the schedule for SBL Sessions on Hebrews and related issues (with abstracts) and ETS Sessions on Hebrews. This will help you schedule your time and the November meetings and know what sessions Brian will be attending.

The last two carnivals for 2018 are set. Bob MacDonald (@drmacdonald) will take a short break from his detailed analysis of every chapter of the Hebrew Bible to host the November 2018 (Due December 1) and  Christopher Scott will be hosting the December 2018 carnival (due January 1, 2019).

As of this time, I do not have hosts for any carnivals for 2019. I have reached out to a few newer bloggers as well as previous hosts, but I have had fewer volunteers recently. This is your chance to step up and host a carnival. This is true for veteran bloggers as well as newer academic blogs. Hosting the carnival is a great way to draw attention to your work, so consider hosting in the near future. Seriously….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.

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Jim West DripI had a particularly busy Monday, and now it is a busy Tuesday before I get to the monthly Biblical Studies Carnival.

Jim West posted Biblical Studies Carnival 151 for September 2018 at Zwinglius Redivivus.  As always, Jim draws together a wide range of blogs and topics, he has a good eye for historical theology. He begins my drawing attention to Dan Wallace’s post on the importance of the biblical languages in theological education. I am aware of a graduate program (PhD classes in fact) which does not teach the languages, but how to use Bible Software. This is dangerous, like putting guns in the hands of people who do not know how to use them.

Next month Jacob Prahlow (@prahlowjacob) hosts the October Carnival (Due November 1) and in November 2018 (Due December 1) Bob MacDonald (@drmacdonald) will take a short break from his detailed analysis of every chapter of the Hebrew Bible to host the November 2018 (Due December 1). As of today, I do not have a volunteer for the December 2018 carnival (Due January 1), or any carnivals for 2019. I have had fewer volunteers over the last few months, so this is your chance to step up and host a carnival. This is true for veteran bloggers as well as newer academic blogs. Hosting the carnival is a great way to draw attention to your work, so consider hosting in the near future. Seriously….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.

You can also review older carnivals by browsing this tag. Follow me on twitter (@plong42) if you are into that sort of thing. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Summer Carnival

Celebrate the end of long hot summer with the September 2018 Biblical Studies Carnival hosted by Jim West, the Grand Poobah of Biblio-blogging. Jim has hosted many carnivals and often has focused on some particular issue or theme. Not sure what he has planned for this carnival, but he is asking for readers to send him nominations for the best and brightest blog posts on biblical or theological topics, biblical languages, Church history, archaeology, or anything else you think worthy of inclusion in this Month’s carnival. Contact him on Zwinglius Redivivus  or direct message him on Twitter @drjewest, or you can try his FaceBook group, Biblical Studies Discussion List. He may have Pinterest and Etsy account as well.

Looking ahead to the last few months of the year, Jacob Prahlow @prahlowjacob hosts in October 2018 (Due November 1) at Pursuing Veritas. Bob MacDonald @drmacdonald will host in November 2018 (Due December 1) at Dust. I am sure they would appreciate some help as their carnival time draws close.

At this point I have no one for December 2018 (Due January 1) and the 2019 carnival schedule completely open. I would like to have a volunteer for December and start filling in the 2019 schedule. If you are a new blogger, hosting a carnival is a great way to get some exposure. I would also like to see some veterans host again. Contact me via email plong42@gmail.com, or DM on Twitter @plong42 or leave a comment here and I can contact you.

Tenessee Carnival

Photo Stolen from @TheKevenTurner

Kevin Turner posted the 150th Biblical Studies Carnival at Monday Morning Theologian.  August is always a slow month, Kevin says “scholars being busy this month due to school being back in session,” which being interpreted means, we are milking the last few moments of freedom from this summer. He says his blog ” about me pretending to be a theologian. I have no seminary education and do not work in ministry, which is kind of reason behind the name. Theology and the Christian life is something that interest me, though, so here we are.” But he posts quite a bit of good material Follow him on Twitter:  @TheKevenTurner.

In other blogging news, Brian Small posted a few Hebrews Highlights on POLUMEROS KAI POLUTROPOS for August 2018, including a few from Andreas Köstenberger at Biblical Foundations. I have a Biblical Studies magazine on Flipboard, an essential app for your iOS device. I use it on my iPad for news and other special interests (including biblioblogs).

Next month, the Gaylord Perry of Bibioblogging Jim West, (@drjewest) will host the September 2018 (Due October 1). But I have no one for November 2018 (Due December 1) or December 2018 (Due January 1). If you would like to volunteer 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….too late, I am begging.

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

Labor Day Sale

Wipf & Stock is having a Labor Day Sale. Through the weekend you can get 40% off any purchase through their website, using the discount code LABOR40. The best use of this discount is to buy my book, Jesus the Bridegroom (Pickwick, 2015).

cover-1000x1500Marianne Blickenstaff of Union Presbyterian Seminary reviewed the for Review of Biblical Literature (here is a link to the RBL Review)  I am very happy to have her review the book, especially since I read her book, ‘While the Bridegroom is with Them’: Marriage, Family, Gender and Violence in the Gospel of Matthew (London: T&T Clark, 2005) at the very beginning stages of my research on the Wedding Banquet Parable and was influenced by her reading of the Banquet Parable in Matthew 22. I appreciate her very kind review. She summarizes the book and concludes “This study is a compelling counterargument to scholarship that claims the church, and  not Jesus himself, developed the bridegroom and wedding banquet themes. Long has provided well-researched and convincing evidence that Jesus could have operated within Second Temple Jewish interpretive conventions to develop Hebrew Bible themes in new
ways to elucidate the purpose of his ministry.”

The full title of the book is Jesus the Bridegroom: The Origin of the Eschatological Feast as a Wedding Banquet in the Synoptic Gospels and is an edited version of my PhD dissertation. As I was working on my dissertation, people would ask what I was writing on. I usually said “an intertextual study on messianic banquet imagery in the Synoptic Gospels.” After a moment of awkward silence, I clarified: “Jesus said the Kingdom of Heaven is like a Wedding Banquet – what’s up with that?” I considered that as a title for a (very) short time.

The book is also available through Amazon in paperback and Kindle. The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers. There is also a Logos version of the book, if you prefer that format. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a three copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.

If you have read the book (or at least looked it over semi-seriously), please leave a review on AmazonI would appreciate your comments. Unfortunately Amazon reviews carry weight, so please consider giving the book a good rating and leaving a comment on Amazon if you can.

I would really like to hear feedback from anyone who reads the book – feel free to send me an email to continue the discussion. Thanks!

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My book Jesus the Bridegroom is now available from Amazon in paperback or Kindle


Christian Theology

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