Jesus, the Mamzer, and Ruth

I am reading Peter Schäfer’s creative reconstruction of the background for Jesus in the Talmud and a thought occurred to me that I do not see how I missed before (and a connection Schäfer does not seem to make). The Talmud addresses Jesus’ lineage (b Shab 104b), asserting that he is a bastard, a mamzer in the […]


On laughing at students’ mistakes | Remnant of Giants

Deane is absolutely right. It has always rubbed me the wrong way. Very similar to the way in which “Dean Dad,” a community college dean who blogs anonymously, would openly mock or criticize his faculty and others who were in their community. Oddly enough, Inside Higher Ed decided to make him a regularly contributor. Dean’s […]


Congratulations to Jeremy Schipper!

Kudos to Jeremy Schipper of Temple U,  a friend and colleague who is very deserving of being awarded a 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship! As a Guggenheim Fellow, Schipper will be writing a book currently titled Demark Vesey’s Bible: Biblical Interpretation and the Trial that Changed a Nation. In 1822, Denmark Vesey, a formerly enslaved man of […]


Moving from Sente to EndNote (with screenshots)

In a previous post (Sente is (long) dead, long live EndNote?) I wrote about the fact that Sente, the bibliographic database solution I had espoused is now defunct and that I had moved over to EndNote. (And I feel horrible about that! Coincidentally a former PSU student of mine just emailed me to say that […]


Why are you weeping? (An Easter Sermon)

The following was my Easter sermon delivered at St. B’s in 2017.  Jeremiah 31:1-6 Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24 Colossians 3:1-4 John 20:1-18 1Cor. 15:3 For I shared with you the most important truth that I had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, 4 and that he was buried, and that he […]


Sente is (long) dead, long live EndNote? 1

Several years ago I wrote about seeking a bibliographic software. I had been using EndNote for years, but I wanted a solution that would allow me to archive and annotate PDFs while also having access to them on the iPad. I chose the “walled garden” of Sente. It was well integrated, had server support, and […]


Hospice or Hospital? 1

This year I have been thinking a lot about the fact that the Church should be a place of healing. That means that, if a Christian community is doing their job right, there ought to be a lot of hurting people in it, needing healing, comfort, and love. If we are honest with ourselves, we […]


Rouse yourself! Why do you sleep, O Lord?

In Rom. 8:26-39 Paul cites Ps. 44:22 in a curious way. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be […]


I Don’t Need Lent

I don’t need Lent. I don’t need to be reminded of my mortality. I don’t need to be reminded of the sinful and wicked workings of this world. I don’t need to be reminded that I am a sinner. I don’t need to be reminded that I am ashes and to ashes I shall return. […]

Toppled Cross

Blaming everyone but ourselves. 3

The Archangel from Tobit, as retold by Frederick Buechner, explaining how we blame suffering on everyone but ourselves. “When terrible things do happen, they fail to understand that for the most part they have brought them down on their own heads. They prefer to think that it is time itself that is terrible and that […]