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cover-1000x1500Now through December 31, Wipf & Stock is offering 40% off any purchase through their website, using the discount code BYE2016. The best use of this discount is to buy my book, Jesus the Bridegroom (Pickwick, 2015).

Marianne 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 now 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 few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.

If you do read the book, please leave a nice review on AmazonI would appreciate your comments., Unfortunately Amazon reviews carry weight these days, so please consider giving the book five stars 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!

one-million

Reading Acts launched in September 2008, and after three years hit about 50,000 views. As of today, the blog had its one millionth hit! Although the majority of these are undoubtedly spambots from eastern Europe hoping to steal my identity or sell me low-cost Ugg books, there are quite a few regular readers who occasionally leave comments, so I know some people are actually reading what I write.

In the early days I might have seen 20-30 hits a week, but now the average is well over 800 per day so far in 2016, and the last month as been closer to 1000 per day. Since the end of 2015 I am seeing about 25000 a month, and growth almost every month over the last two years.

I am quite humbled that Reading Acts has lasted long enough to pass this mark. Yesterday was my 1700th post over the nearly eight years I have been writing here. This is quite a few considering I do not write the types of posts that tend to go viral. You know the type: cheap shot political articles, clickbait, celebrity gossip, etc. I also do not espouse radical theological opinions to generate hits. No historical Adam histrionics or anti Rob Bell rants. Maybe if I wrote acid-laced rants about these hot topics I would generate more traffic, but I really can’t pull that sort of thing off.

For the most part I write all the posts (there have only been three guest posts).  I did publish my dissertation in 2012, but it is not controversial nor all that exciting, apparently. I think I only get hints from people looking for Brant Pitre’s book of the same name (and different subtitle). Go buy a copy and review it on Amazon, it is only $10 for the Kindle version.

Most of my posts plod along a a few hits a week although there are a few which consistently turn up as top posts every week. Sometimes there are hits coming from a moodle page or from a University discussion board. Since I cannot see them, hopefully people are treating me gently. With only a few exceptions, comments on Reading Acts have been helpful and friendly.

Commentors

Speaking of future plans, I was hoping to update the Top Five Commentary series from 2012 this summer. In the last four years new commentaries on virtually every book of the New Testament have been published so my original lists are now out of date. Several people have encouraged me to add more categories (historical Jesus, Parables, Pauline studies, etc.) Leave a comment if you have a suggestion for a similar “top five” category, I might just include it.

I am also considering a summer series on Jewish apocalyptic literature since I am teaching a Daniel and Revelation summer class and a Second Temple Period lit class in Spring 2017. I need to sharpen up on the material and a blog series is a great place to start. I am teaching Romans in the fall, so I am planning on a slow read through the book starting in September and going through December.

Since one million hits is a pretty big milestone, I will celebrate with a few book giveaways over the next few weeks. I have been setting a stack of books aside to give away all winter long, now is the time to get them out there! Check back after the weekend for the first book giveaway.

Once again, thanks to everyone who reads this blog, even the spambots.

One-Million-Hits

 

00_PICKWICK_Template Marianne Blickenstaff of Union Presbyterian Seminary reviewed my Jesus the Bridegroom for Review of Biblical Literature. 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 now available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website. The book retails for $33, but Amazon and Wipf & Stock have it discounted. The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers. I have not seen a Kindle version yet. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.  If you do get the book, leave a nice review on Amazon, I would appreciate that.

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

Of course, 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!

liebsterDan Gullotta nominated me for a Liebster Award. I thank him kindly for this honor, and I am thrilled there is someone out there reading this blog who is not a Brazilian spammer trying to get me to buy Uggs. I am also happy to be on a list with Jim West that is not on a Post Office wall. Since these awards are the blogging equivalent of a chain letter, I better pass it on lest I be plagued with more plagues than usual.

“The Rules” according to the Wording Well, in order to accept the nomination you must follow these following guidelines:

  • Post the award on your blog.
  • Thank the blogger who presented this award and link back to his/her blog.
  • Write 5 random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 5 bloggers (they should have less than 300 followers).
  • Answer 5 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 5 questions.

Questions from Dan:

  1. If you were trapped on an island for the rest of your life and only had one book to read and only one movie to watch, what would they be? I suppose I ought to take a book on Tropical Medicine and Castaway….How am I watching this movie if I am on a deserted Island?
  2. What do you think is the biggest issue facing the world today and why? Apathy, people care more about what famous people are wearing than crimes against humanity committed every day.
  3. If you could have lunch with anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why? I’d like to have coffee with Bob Dylan, after midnight in New Orleans.
  4. If you change something in your past, what would you alter? I should have started my PhD sooner.
  5. For pleasure only, what language would you love to be able to speak perfectly? Korean or Vietnmese, so I could know what they are saying about me.

I am also supposed to “write 5 random facts about yourself.”

  1. I had a letter published in Omni Magazine when I was 16 years old asking for a Philip K. Dick story.
  2. I met Phil Keaggy on an airplane once.
  3. I am often mistaken for V. Phillips Long. Often.
  4. I think Ron Swanson is an acceptable role-model.
  5. I plan my vacations around used book store locations.

Nominate 5 bloggers (they should have less than 300 followers).

  1. Mike Skinner at Cataclysmic
  2. Jennifer Guo at Jennifer Guo
  3. Vincent at Talmidimblogging
  4. Jeff Carter at That JeffCarter Was Here
  5. Claude Mariottini, at Dr. Claude Mariottini

Answer 5 questions posted by the presenter and ask your nominees 5 questions.

  1. You can only listen to one CD/record for the rest of your life – what is it?
  2. What book most shaped the way you think today? (Bonus points for not saying Atlas Shrugged)
  3. What movie are you most embarrassed about liking?
  4. You get to meet with the Pope alone for five minutes – what do you say to him?
  5. Which Simpsons character is your favorite?

So there it is. Go read these blogs, they are all very good. Thanks, Dan!

blogiversaryOn September 1, 2008 Reading Acts published its first post, “Why Acts?” I originally set up this blog as a supplement to my preaching through the Book of Acts at Rush Creek Bible Church. My plan was to offer a few thoughts before and after I preached on a particular text in Acts. Those first few months I something like 75 hits a month; the first four months I totaled 481 hits in all! While there are several blogs that have been around longer, there are not many that make it to the six-year mark. At least, there are not many that make it to six years without being turned into a spambot.

Reading Acts has grown consistently over the years. This surprises me a bit since I avoid political posts and generally ignore the easy “controversial” targets (Jesus’s Wife, Mark Driscoll, etc). I might do a bit better if I tried to argue a Coptic fragment proved Mark Driscoll was secretly married to Benny Hinn in a secret Illuminati ceremony presided over by Sarah Palin, but I really do not want to stoop that low.

The blog recently passed 1200 posts and 600,000 hits. While daily traffic peaked two years ago there has been steady growth since a lull in posting last summer.  I see more involvement from readers in the last two years, which is a positive sign. It is gratifying that Reading Acts is consistently in the Top Ten Biblioblogs for several years now (#7 for Summer 2014), although I know that several popular blogs have dropped off that list in the last year, inflating my rank just a bit.

Most readers are from the the US, UK, Canada, and Australia, although I see quite a few readers from the Philippines, India, South Africa, and Singapore. My all time top post is the beginning of a series I wrote on using an iPad for biblical studies. Despite being three years old, it consistently leads all other posts each month. I wrote a short piece on Paul’s teacher Gamaliel in 2011 which is still in my top few posts every month. I assume I am helping some homeschoolers or Bible college students do their homework. In 2012 I asked if John was the Disciple Whom Jesus Loved. This post continues to generate hits and comments after more than two years. By far the most popular single-day post I have written was a bit of humor, Top Ten Ways To Fail a Bible Paper. I suppose it is not humor for people who have to grade Bible papers, but it did get well over 2000 hits the first day I posted it, making it the closest thing to “viral” a BiblioBlog is likely to get. I also added a Facebook Page for Reading Acts, so go and “like it” if you are into that sort of thing.

My first book was published by Wipf & Stock, Jesus the Bridegroom. You should really go buy a copy, or at the very least post a glowing review on Amazon. The Kindle version is cheaper, and it is available through publisher.

I started organizing the Biblioblog Carnivals a few years ago and have hosted that event twice. Occasionally I read things about the “death of the biblioblog,” but the Carnivals seem to indicate there is a healthy group of bloggers publishing good work regularly each month. It is not the same ground as six years ago, but it seems to me there is still a need for freely available quality scholarship on the Internet.

Starting almost immediately, I am going to return to the Gospels. I am teaching Jesus and the Gospels in the fall and I have read several excellent monographs on Jesus studies this summer. After a couple of weeks of orientation and basic foundational posts, I will be blogging through the life of Jesus through the fall.

I am looking forward to another great year on Reading Acts, thanks to everyone who regularly reads the blog.  I do appreciate your interest and comments.

Tolerate

Logos BridegroomHere is some good news on my book, Jesus, the Bridegroom. It will be available in the Logos Library as a part of a two-book bundle. The “Wipf & Stock Eschatology Bundle” is on pre-order along with Jonathan Menn’s Biblical Eschatology. Menn is the  director of Equipping Church Leaders-East Africa, and his book runs over 600 pages! I guess I am the junior partner in this bundle at 300 pages. I hope that once my book is published in the Logos library it will become available separately, but it is exciting to see it on the Logos site.

Jesus the Bridegroom has been reviewed in a couple of places. I posted a notice of Peter J. Leithart’s review 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 available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website and retails for $33 (Amazon and Wipf & Stock sell it for discounted price). 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. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.  If you do get the book, leave a nice review on Amazon, I would appreciate that.

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

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.

00_PICKWICK_TemplateIn 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!

00_PICKWICK_TemplatePeter J. Leithart at First Things reviewed my book, Jesus the Bridegroom. Despite being a revised dissertation, he calls it a “fine monograph” despite my “failure to incorporate the temple” into the study. Leithart says “He comes close to recognizing its centrality in several places (when he notices that Isaiah 41 lists the materials for tabernacle construction [86], or when he notes the connection between the “cloud” and the nuptial chamber in Isaiah 4 [122]), but he doesn’t follow through.”  Leithart says that the Temple “is a place of festivity, of marital covenant renewal, of enthronement of the divine Bridegroom in the trysting place in the wilderness.” Perhaps, but I am not sure that language appears in the Hebrew Bible, even if it does in later rabbinic reflections on the Temple. Nevertheless, I appreciate the nudge toward other evidence to support the thesis of the book.

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 is now available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website. The book retails for $33, but Amazon and Wipf & Stock have it discounted. The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers. I have not seen a Kindle version yet. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.  If you do get the book, leave a nice review on Amazon, I would appreciate that.

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

Of course, 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!

It is traditional for the media to fill out their content at the end of the year with “top ten lists” and other year-in-review type stories. Part of the reason is that no one really wants to work from Christmas to New Year’s Day, so these kind of easily generated stories pad out news outlets. They do not really say anything new, although they are sometimes interesting to read. I find that reading “top fifty albums of the year” lists remind me how out-of-touch I am with contemporary culture.  But mostly these kind of articles are Shameless Self Promotion. So without further ado, allow me to flog my own blog for the final post of 2013.

Self Promotion

It was a busy year on Reading Acts, with 256 new posts, pushing the total over 1000 posts since the blog began in September 2008.  The blog had over 173,000 hits from 195 countries, with the Philippines, India and Singapore leading the non-English speaking countries) and it cross the 500,000 hit threshold in the next day or two. My first book was published in November (here is a summary of the book with links).

Reading Acts makes the “top lists” regularly now, such as the BiblioBlog Top 50, although my favorite is Peter’s Kirby’s list, since he put me at #4.  Reading Acts was the host for the March 2013 BiblioBlog Carnival and I have been cajoling people into volunteering for that honor for the last year and a half.  If you are interesting in hosting a Carnival, contact me!

I AM AWESOMESince I do not write on political / cultural issues, this is quite remarkable. I could probably generate a great deal more traffic if I made a few sharp comments about the burning issues of our day. I suppose I could do a few posts on Kim Kardashian’s strange relationship with Duck Dynasty, or Rob Bell’s new book denying the existed of Rick Warren, or Mark Driscoll plagiarizing Peter Enns’ new book on the historical N. T. Wright.  But that has not been the ethos of this blog and I probably will not change things that much.

As you can see in the left margin, I have added links to my Academia.edu page (facebook/linkedn mash-up for academics) and the Bible Gateway Blogger Grid. Both of these sites are excellent resources for academic study of the Bible.

My Top Seven Posts in 2013:

WordPress does a good job of letting me know the sorts of things people search to get to Reading Acts. I obviously get hits on iPad apps, especially around Christmas or the release of a new iPad/iPhone. But the top five search terms for this year were “why did judas betray jesus,”  carnival, pentecost, and judaizers. So the ultimate post would be about Judas and the Judaizers betraying Jesus at a Pentecost carnival.  I am always amazed and the hits I get from people obviously cut and pasting a question from their homework (“1. why did paul….” or “what are the three main themes of Galatians?”) I assume that these are properly cited in MLA format.

I do want to sincerely thank the many people who read this blog. I am always amazed to hear that someone follows the blog and actually reads it.

This is some exciting news:  My book is now available through Amazon and the Wipf & Stock website. The book retails for $33, but Amazon and Wipf & Stock have it discounted. The Kindle version is only $9.99 and claims to have real page numbers. I have not seen a Kindle version yet. If you live in the Grand Rapids area, I have a few copies in my office if you want to get one directly from me.  If you do get the book, leave a nice review on Amazon, I would appreciate that.

00_PICKWICK_TemplateThe 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.

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

Of course, 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!

1000 CandlesThis month Reading Acts celebrated its fifth anniversary. When I started, I was averaging about 4 hits a day for the first few months. This blog now gets about 500 hits a day and it is fast approaching 500,000 hits since 2008. On September 1, 2008 Reading Acts published its first post, “Why Acts?” I originally set up this blog as a supplement to my preaching through the Book of Acts at Rush Creek Bible Church. My plan was to offer a few thoughts before and after I preached on a particular text in Acts. After the series concluded, I kept the blog going, expanding to Pauline Theology and other New Testament topics.

Book reviews have become a major part of the life of Reading Acts. I enjoy reading and need to stay current in the literature of Biblical studies, so I relish the opportunity to review books regularly for the blog. I have also started posted some of my book reviews to Academia.edu.

1000 Candles 2But this post represents another milestone as well – this is post #1000. For some bloggers, a thousand posts is a couple of months of work, but for me, this is a big deal. Bloggers seem to use 1000 posts as an indication of some level of success. After a thousand posts, most of which are substantial attempts at writing on the New Testament, I think that I can call Reading Acts a “success.”  Well, it survived into a fifth year, and that alone is special in the blogging world.

I want to use post #1000 to comment on blogging in general, and more specifically Biblio-blogging.  I agree with Michael Hyatt’s observation that blogging helps clarify one’s thinking. It is harder to writer 500 words on a topic that 5000.  Most of my posts are 500 to 750 words, so that represents quite a bit of work (even though I have re-posted a few times!) But most of what I have done on this blog has helped me to express a thought or idea better in a lecture for class or in a Bible study or sermon at my church. Some bloggers write therapeutically, but I can’t do that.

For me, this blog is something of a scratch pad for ideas that might develop into a longer article or book at some point in the future. While I understand a blog as “published,” it is still (in my mind) less substantial than a book. IO have had students ask me how to cite my blog in their paper. That is a bit intimidating since I am not sure I want to stand behind my research on a blog post the same as I might a full length book. And I am fully aware of the many students use this site for their homework since I see Google searches that are obviously cut and pasted from assignments! I hope that what is offered here is a first step in research and encourages readers to dig a little deeper (and I do not mean wikipedia!)

I am looking forward to another great year on Reading Acts, thanks to everyone who regularly reads the blog.  I do appreciate your interest and comments. And now for the next 1000 posts…

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