Duane Smith has a very important reflection on the inefficiencies of higher education that is very much worth your time.
My emphasis is the article is that a readiness to accommodate diversity in a positive manner seems to have been one of the key characteristics of that cluster of forms of early Christianity that comprise what has been referred to as “proto-orthodox” Christianity. The original connotation of “heresy” in early Christian usage was a sectarian outlook, a narrow religious “party”. I give some examples of the diversity that we see represented directly in the New Testament, which is a collective statement affirming a critical diversity. Early Christianity at its best was more of a jazz combo, with creativity and room for variations, rather than a tightly orchestrated symphony with each part written out in detail and conforming to a closely-directed performance.
According to a team of researchers led by the Wharton management professor Adam Grant, introverted leaders typically deliver better outcomes than extroverts, because they’re more likely to let proactive employees run with their ideas.
I take studies like this with a healthy bit of skepticism but at least one helpful thing that it highlights is that you don’t have to be a high energy type A person to be a good leader which is what you hear from many quarters. Yet, I tend to think that good leaders are good leaders. It doesn’t matter if you are extroverted or introverted as long as you take your own personal strengths and approach and use them well while recognizing and compensating for your weaknesses. This applies not only to business environments but also to the way classes are taught and students are mentored.
Instead of trying to classify, we may fare better if we consider how the genre or genres used by an author create potentials for meaning and influence how we read a text…Instead of asking ‘What genre is this text?’–a question that locks us into one genre or another–we should ask ‘How does genre shape this text?’–a question that allows for multiple influences.
–Angela Roskop, The Wilderness Itineraries (Eisenbrauns, 2011), 28.
I’m re-reading Angie’s treatment of genre for the third time. Good books are like that; you keep coming back to them and each reading is more profitable than the last. If you are interested in genre, reading, and/or biblical studies then you need this book in your library.
Here is a prepublication version of my article in the current issue of the Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament, “An Indecent Proposal: The Theological Core of the Book of Ruth.” I am no longer teaching at SBTS so this was changed in the printed version. Thanks go to Athalya Brenner who was kind enough to read a draft and had some really great reflections that I was not able to integrate into the article due to the publication schedule, however, I will post her thoughts here on the blog soon.
In the article I try to unpack the theological implications of the threshing floor encounter and argue that that is the central event of the book and, therefore, theological reflections should center upon it instead of trying to mute its sexual overtones (which are admittedly, and likely purposefully, ambiguous). If you read it let me know what you think.
Now that the topic of immigration is in the national debate, you might be interested in Danny Carroll’s blog (of Denver Seminary) which focuses on this very thing.
A couple years ago I curated a collection of open courses that would form a curriculum for a free M.A. in biblical studies for personal study. More courses have come online since then so I’ve updated the entire thing. It’s a really spectacular list of classes taught by John Searle, Christine Hayes, Dale Martin, Shaye Cohen, Miroslav Volf, Tony Blair, and more. Enjoy.
Jeffrey Tigay has made a recent essay available for free download, “The Documentary Hypothesis, Empirical Models and Holistic Interpretation,” in which he discusses the underpinnings of the Documentary Hypothesis and how ancient editors artfully crafted a mostly coherent “final form” of the Pentateuch. Enjoy.