Mark your Calendars for Our Upcoming Fall Round-Table Event!
Many Christians watch with dismay as the cultural revolution shreds traditional understandings of morality and the family. That dismay may turn to confusion as we hear people assert confidently that the Bible does not reject homosexuality. What are we to make of these new cultural trends and the claim that they can be justified from Scripture?
Dr. Don Fortson (Professor of Church History at Reformed Theological Seminary and an adjunct professor at Gordon-Conwell) and Dr. Rollin Grams (Associate Professor of New Testament at Gordon-Conwell) have recently addressed this question thoroughly and comprehensively in their book Unchanging Witness: The Consistent Christian Teaching on Homosexuality in Scripture and Tradition. This book deals not only with the relevant biblical passages and their contemporary re-interpretations, but also with the Church's understanding of those passages throughout Christian history. The book's title says it all: the Church has been united in its understanding of homosexuality for its entire history up until very recently.
On October 25, 2016, the Cooley Center for the Study of Early Christianity is pleased to hold a round-table discussion with Dr. Fortson and Dr. Grams. They will present the basic points of their book and answer questions from the audience about the issue. Please join us from 7:00-9:00 PM in the North American Room of Rogers Hall, for a clarifying conversation that will open our eyes to the consistency of the Church's historic teaching and the degree to which our society has suddenly departed from that witness.
Update on the Gospel of Jesus' Wife
See the following links for recent news on the so-called Gospel of Jesus' Wife:
Michael J. Kruger at Canon Fodder
New Books by Cooley Center Scholars
Did the Early Christians Get the Jesus Story Wrong?
Click here for a review of Bart Ehrman's lastest work, Jesus Before the Gospels, by Michael J. Kruger, President and Samuel C. Patterson Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte. Kruger blogs at Canon Fodder.
Check Out Two New Video Links!
Dr. Donald Fairbairn, Director of the Cooley Center, has released two brief videos.
Click here for a postscript to our recent annual Cooley lecture series, which featured Dr. Daniel B. Wallace.
Cooley Lecture Series Now Available!
Check out the following links to view the recent Cooley Lecture series with Dr. Daniel B. Wallace:
We often hear that the New Testament text has been corrupted during its transmission, and some well-known scholars even argue that the scribes intentionally altered the text. The implication—spoken or unspoken—is that we cannot trust the text of the New Testament and thus have no certain knowledge about Jesus.
In light of widespread questions that these scholarly assertions raise, we, at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary—Charlotte, invite you to view our winter Cooley Lectures, featuring Dr. Daniel B. Wallace, one of the world’s foremost experts on the manuscripts of the New Testament and thus one of the people best equipped to address these questions. Dr. Wallace is Senior Professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, and the Executive Director of the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts. His lectures are ideal for anyone confused by scholarly claims or questions related to the reliability of the text of Scripture.
During the Cooley Lecture series, held January 28 and 29, 2016, Dr. Wallace delivered two lectures on our campus. The first lecture is entitled, “Is What We Have Now What They Wrote Then? The Reliability of the New Testament Text,” and assesses the differences between the New Testament manuscripts and the crucial question of whether we can trust the accuracy of the text we have. The second lecture is called “Tracking Down New Testament Manuscripts: An Update from Athens,” and presents the exciting work of digitizing New Testament manuscripts to place them in a single repository at the National Library of Greece in Athens. This visually-stunning presentation includes newly-discovered New Testament manuscripts.
Unearthing the World of Jesus
First Century Mark?
Check out the following links for articles that contain information and discussion concerning the recent claim that there is a first century manuscript of part of Mark's Gospel.
Mummy Mask May Reveal Oldest Known Gospel at Live Science
Possible First-Century Copy of Mark’s Gospel Discovered by Denny Burk
Earliest Fragment of Mark’s Gospel Apparently Found by Ben Witherington, III
Questions About "First Century Mark" at Evangelical Textual Criticism
Responses to Newsweek's latest take on the Bible, an article called THE BIBLE SO MISUNDERSTOOD IT'S A SIN, by Kurt Eichenwald
Ben Witherington, III - News Weak—- The Problems with Mr. Eichenwald’s Article
Michael Brown - A Response to Newsweek on the Bible
Daniel B. Wallace - Predictable Christmas Fare: Newsweek’s Tirade against the Bible
Jesus' Wife, Again?
Click here for Dr. Robert R. Cargill's excellent review of Simcha Jacobovici and Dr. Barrie Wilson's new book, The Lost Gospel. For a shorter review by Dr. Micheal J. Kruger, click here. Finally, click here for John Dickson's brief remarks.
A multi-part review by Richard Bauckham can be found at Mark Goodacre's NT Blog.
Does the Bible Really Tell Me So?
Click here for Michael J. Kruger's excellent review of Peter Enns' new book The Bible Tells Me So: Why Defending Scripture Has Made Us Unable to Read It.
MNAMON: Portal for Ancient Writing Systems in the Mediterranean
Mnamon provides information on the best and most useful material available on the web for the research and study of ancient writing systems in the Mediterranean: archives, research centers, bibliographies and teaching materials.
All information is selected and critically reviewed by specialists. A brief presentation of the characteristics, the places and times when documented and the languages that used each writing system are included.
New SBL site: Bible Odyssey
Textual Resource from the German Bible Society
Check it Out!
Bible Secrets Revealed or History Distorted?
Check out the following links for a series of responses to the History Channel's new documentary Bible Secrets Revealed.
See the following links for a review of Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard's book Killing Jesus: A History.
Internet Guide to Religion
Princeton Theological Seminary Puts Books Online!
Reviews of Reza Aslan's Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth
Take a STEP in Bible Study!
A Review of The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom
New Testament Virtual Manuscript Room
A "New" New Testament?
Check out the following links to read scholarly responses to the recently released A New New Testament. This collection of texts, touted as the "Bible for the 21st century," is a collection of writings that includes ten "newly discovered" texts in addition to the twenty-seven canonical texts of the NT. The collection was chosen and assembled by Hal Taussig and a team of eighteen scholars and religious leaders, including Jesus Seminar member John Dominic Crossan.
Paul Barnett - A New New Testament
Daniel Wallace - A New New Testament: Are you serious?
For information on the formation of the New Testament canon, check out Ten Basic Facts About the NT Canon that Every Christian Should Memorize by Michael J. Kruger. Another helpful site is 4Gospels.com.
Scholarly Response to "The Gospel of Jesus' Wife"
In response to the recent, sensationalistic claims regarding a newly translated papyrus fragment that refers to Jesus' wife, please visit the following links:
- Tyndale House Newsletter
- Francis Watson - The Gospel of Jesus' Wife: How a Fake Gospel Fragment was Compsed
- NT Blog: Francis Watson, Addendum: The End of the Line?
- Larry Hurtado - "The Gospel of Jesus' Wife" . . . Maybe . . . Maybe Not
- Michael J. Kruger - The Far Less Sensational Truth About Jesus' "Wife"
- Darrell L. Bock - Quick Thoughts on the New Jesus Wife Text
- The "wife" of Jesus? Some comments from Craig A. Evans
- The Biblical Word - Jesus' Sister/Wife? Ben Witherington on the Jesus' Wife Papyrus
Scholarly Response to: The Jesus Discovery: The Resurrection Tomb that Reveals the Birth of Christianity
In response to the recent claims of Dr. James Tabor and Simcha Jacobovici in their new book The Jesus Discovery, please check out the following links:
Cooley Center iMac Computer
The Cooley Collection is now pleased to offer a full complement of sophisticated exegetical research programs accessible on a new iMac in the Cooley room. A significant investment has been made in the purchase of Accordance 8, one of the premier Bible software programs. A host of high quality Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic resources have been made available. These fully-searchable texts are invaluable resources to anyone studying the cultural and linguistic background of the biblical texts.
For scholars of the Old Testament, the Cooley Collection now offers the complete biblical manuscripts of the Dead Sea Scrolls, multiple versions of the Septuagint (including the Cambridge Septuagint apparatus), Aramaic and Hebrew Inscriptions, the Targums, the Samaritan Pentateuch, and the Ugaritic Databank. For scholars of the New Testament and early Judaism, the sectarian documents of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Mishnah, the works of Josephus, Philo and the Old Testament Apocrypha/Pseudepigrapha are available, in addition to grammatically tagged versions of both Vaticanus and Sinaiticus. Specialists in early church history will find Greek and English versions of the Apostolic Fathers, a collection of apocryphal Gospel texts, and Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History. In addition to Accordance 8, other notable programs are installed on the iMac, including BibleWorks 7 and Logos 4. The Soncino Judaic Classics Library has also been installed, giving access to rabbinic literature including the Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Mishnah, Midrash Rabbah and the Zohar. PDF versions of Jacob Neusner’s translation of the Babylonian and Jerusalem Talmuds have also been installed.
Advanced students and researchers wishing to use the new computer resources may do so by appointment, which can be made by contacting the library director, Dr. Robert Mayer (firstname.lastname@example.org), and the Cooley Center fellow, Rev. Mark Poe (email@example.com) by email. Requests should include a description of the research project and the estimated length of time needed for research. Dr. Mayer and Rev. Poe will schedule your appointment and arrange for brief training in use of the computer and its resources.
Interested in Becoming a Patron?
The Robert C. Cooley Center is dedicated to exploring the historical foundations of the Christian faith. Achieving this end involves historical, literary, and archaeological research into the origins of both biblical and Christian faith and practice. Patron support is crucial to the continuing work of the Center. Your support is used to fund the bi-annual newsletter, the yearly lecture series, as well other projects and areas of research conducted by the staff at the Center. If you are interested in supporting this important work, please contact Dr. Rollin Grams at 704.527.5842 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.