Mark Your Calendars for the Upcoming Cooley Lecture Series!

On January 15 and 16, 2015, the Robert C. Cooley Center for the Study of Early Christianity will host its annual lecture series.  This year's featured speaker is Dr. Walter C. Kaiser Jr. (Ph.D., Brandeis University).  Dr. Kaiser is distinguished professor emeritus of Old Testament and president emeritus of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts. He has written over 40 books, including Toward an Exegetical Theology: Biblical Exegesis for Preaching and Teaching; The Messiah in the Old Testament; and The Promise-Plan of God; and coauthored An Introduction to Biblical Hermeneutics: The Search for Meaning.

About the Event

The Cultivated Olive Tree and Ingrafted Branches: Re-Thinking Israel and the Church

One of the great scandals of Christian history has been the Church’s often deplorable treatment of Jews. In addition to being shameful, Christian hostility to Jews is also hard to fathom, given the fact that the New Testament grew out of the Old, the Messiah came from the Jews, and the Church was to some degree modeled on the synagogue. How can we account for this dark aspect of our Christian history?

Our 2014 Cooley lecturer, Dr. Walter Kaiser, will explore the theological beliefs that have undergirded much Christian anti-Jewish sentiment. At the root of this hostility, he will argue, is a theological approach called “supersessionism” (sometimes called “replacement theology”), the teaching that the Church replaces Israel as the heir of the Old Testament promises. Dr. Kaiser will trace the origins of supersessionism and some of its more destructive manifestations. He will also re-examine the way supersessionist theology has handled Old Testament prophecy and will offer a more accurate way to interpret that prophecy. In the process, he will remind us of the need for a more positive and constructive attitude toward Israel on the part of the Christian church.

Please join us for these thought-provoking and practical lectures from one of America’s foremost Old Testament scholars.

Schedule of Events:

Thursday, January 15, 2015
6:00 p.m., Room 140/141 - Patrons’ Reception (for patrons of the Robert C. Cooley Center)*
*Patrons must RSVP to Mark Poe (mpoe@gordonconwell.edu) by January 2, 2015

7:00 p.m., Lecture in the Cooley Chapel - The Hostile Relationship of Israel and the Church: The Shameful History of Supersessionism and Replacement Theology

Friday, January 16, 2015

7:00 p.m., Lecture in the Cooley Chapel - When the Church Needs Israel and Israel Needs the Church: Overcoming Christian Revisionist Interpretations of the Old Testament  

** No registration for the lectures is required. 

For any questions concerning the lecture events, please contact Mark Poe at mpoe@gordonconwell.edu
or 704-435-6408. 

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.

Students, specialists and researchers will all find material of interest on the Portal.  Click here to check it out!

New SBL site: Bible Odyssey

Explore the fascinating origins of the Bible and its eventful history. On Bible Odyssey, the world’s leading scholars share the latest historical and literary research on key people, places, and passages of the Bible. Click here to check it out!

Textual Resource from the German Bible Society

The decades-long commitment of the German Bible Society has produced the staples that have nourished generations of biblical scholars and translators. The booklet Textual Research on the Bible highlights this work.  Check it out!

Check it Out!

Click here to see Prof. Emanuel Tov's master list of electronic tools for Old Testament textual criticism. 

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.

Michael J. Kruger - Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6

Killing Jesus

See the following links for a review of Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard's book Killing Jesus: A History.

Anthony Le Donne

Internet Guide to Religion

Check out this helpful teacher's electronic resource site from the Wabash Center.

Princeton Theological Seminary Puts Books Online!

Check out this link for the Theological Commons, which is a digital library of 76,717 books and journals on theology and religion, including 26,783 volumes from the Princeton Theological Seminary Library.

Reviews of Reza Aslan's Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of  Nazareth

Click here for Dr. Craig A. Evans' review of this controversial new book.  Also, see Dr. Darrell L. Bock's review at The Gospel Coalition, John Dickson's review at Religion and Ethics blog at abc.net.au, James McGahey's review at McGahey's McMusings, and Dr. Craig Blomberg's review at his blog New Testament Musings.  

Take a STEP in Bible Study!

STEP, Scripture Tools for Every Person, is Tyndale House’s ongoing project to make the best resources for biblical studies freely available to everyone who needs them.  The goal is to make the tools capable of working on phones and low-spec computers (even with intermittent or no internet access). The STEP Project aims to grant all believers access to a wealth of resources previously only available to specialist scholars. STEP represents a major development in Bible study.  Check it out here.

A Review of The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom

Click here for a recent review of Candida Moss' controversial book on early Christian martyrdom.  Also, see Dr. Ben Witherington's review at his blog.

New Testament Virtual Manuscript Room

Click here to check out a new site devoted to the study of Greek New Testament manuscripts. From the NTVMR homepage, this is a site where scholars can find the most exhaustive list of NT manuscript resources, contribute to marking attributes about these manuscripts, and find state of the art tools for researching this rich database.

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

Michael J. Kruger - Review of a "New New Testament": Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Tag Team with Michael Horton.

Michael Horton - A New New Testament? and Inventing My Religion

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:

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 (bmayer@gordonconwell.edu), and the Cooley Center fellow, Rev. Mark Poe (mpoe@gordonconwell.edu) 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 rgrams@gordonconwell.edu.