L.W. Hurtado in Oslo

Hurtado290816mfThe seminar at MF Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo, mentioned in an earlier posting, found place today. As it was in honor of the New Testament professor Reidar Hvalvik, it was good to see both former and present colleagues and not a few students being present.

The first main speaker was Larry W. Hurtado, prof.em. at Divinity School, University of Edinburgh (see picture). His topic was An Early Christian Book and its Story: P45 as Early Christian Artefact. Hurtado presented and characterized the P45, then discussed its importance for 4 different aspects of early Christianity; 1) the importance that it contains the four (now) canonical gospels, 2) the placement or location of Acts in the collection, 3) the codex format used, and then 4) the importance of p45 for its use of nomina sacra.

Then there were two other lectures (Professor Kristin Bliksrud Aavitsland (MF):Representations of Church and the Synagogue in Ecclesiastical Art, and  Postdoc. Dr. Ole Jakob Filtvedt (MF): Picturing the Father in the Gospel of John?). What I found particular interesting here was a picture shown by Aavitsland, of Christ carrying his cross in form of a tree (cf. Deutr 21:23; Gal. 3:13). I have never seen that before!  That may be due to my lack of knowledge of art, but, nevertheless, or in particular for that reason- interesting to me!   🙂

Nice day in the auditorium!   Congratulations to Prof. Hvalvik!

 

 

Celebrating

vigilantismToday, March 9., it is 25 years since I had my public defense of my Norwegian PhD dissertation. Umbelievable how the years fly away..

The ‘disputatio’ was held at the University of Trondheim, now called Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). My mentor was prof. Peder Borgen, and the two other members of the evaluation committee were prof Niels Hyldahl, University of Copenhagen, and Prof. Ernst Baasland, Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo.

The dissertation was slightly reworked, and then published by Brill in 1995.The volume is still available. Looking back I am particularly pleased that it was well received by both Jews and Christians, as it dealt with a somewhat sensitive issue in the relations between Jews and Christians in the first century CA.

Below is a picture of me, and my mentor. We both were young at that time……….:)

IMG_0231At that time I was an associate professor at Volda Regional College, an institution I served until I moved to Stavanger and the School of Mission and Theology in 2005.I retired in 2014.

 

New Dissertation on Deut 32

TinaDNilsen

Research Fellow at the School of Mission and Theology, Stavanger, Norway, Tina Dykesteen Nilsen, have submitted her dissertation to the School and her work has now been accepted as worthy of the public defense thus:

Wednesday September 30, at 5.15-6.00 am, Nilsen will deliver her test lecture over the given topic:

“Moses in biblical memory across the different genres of literature”.

Thursday October 1., at 10 pm Nilsen will publicly defend her thesis: The Origins of Deuteronomy 32: Intertextuality, Memory, Identity.

Her opponents will be: Professor Diana Edelman, Faculty of Theology, University of Oslo, and Professor Karl William Weyde, Norwegian School of Theology, Oslo.

The work of the evaluation commitee has been led by professor Magnar Kartveit, School of Mission and Theology, and her mentor has been professor Knut Holter, School of Mission and Theology.

Her abstract runs thus: “Ever since its Mosaic authorship was questioned more than 150 years ago, the origins of Deut 32:1–43 have been disputed, forming the raison d’être of this dissertation. The dissertation is structured in three parts. Part One gives an introductory chapter, situating the thesis in relation to other quests, and explaining the research question: What is the compositional relationship of Give Ear to other texts, and what are its origins? Chapter Two summarizes research history, looking at criteria that have been used for dating the text, with conclusions ranging from the eleventh to the fourth century BCE. It also presents views on the compositional relationship of Deut 32:1–43 to other biblical texts. Chapter Three prepares the ground for my research by establishing the text from the perspectives of delimitation, integrity, relation to narrative framework and textual criticism. Part Two focusses on what and when. Chapter Four outlines theories and methods of intertextuality, particularly from a diachronic perspective. Chapters Five to Eight asks what is similar and dissimilar when Deut 32:1–43 is compared to a wide but ever narrowing range of other texts, looking at metaphors and similes, lexemes and phrases, lexical fields, linguistic features, forms, themes and parallel texts. Chapter Nine builds on the results from these analyses when shifting focus to when Deut 32:1–43 was composed, concluding that it is probably contemporaneous with Isa 1; 34–35; 56–66, placing it in the first half of the Persian period. Part Three focusses on why and by whom. Chapter Ten looks at theories of social memory and social identity formation and how these are applied to biblical texts, particularly from the Persian period. Using these theories as frameworks, Chapter Eleven asks why Deut 32:1–43 may have been written, discussing the text both within and without its present setting in Deuteronomy. Chapter Twelve pushes the question of who may have composed Deut 32:1– 43, using hypotheses of scribal activities to argue for an origin within an isaianic group of scribes in Yehud. The dissertation provides contributions in the following research areas: the origins of Deut 32:1–43; the relationship of Deut 32:1–43 and other texts; the relationship of Deuteronomy and the Book of Isaiah; memory and identity as constructed in Deut 32:1–43; the larger debate on memory and identity in Yehud, particularly in my proposal that some texts may negotiate between different positions; the larger debate on the origins of the Hebrew Bible in light of texts as scribal products, particularly my proposal of loose groups that interact, allowing for texts crossing boundaries. “

Her dissertation is availably in extenso by clicking HERE (pdf file)

HTLS=?

HTLS stands for Historical and Theological Lexicon of the Septuagint! You can find its site here, and get some impression for yourself, but it surely looks interesting!

Here is their own presentation: “This large-scale collective and interdisciplinary project will aim to produce a new research tool: a multi-volume dictionary giving an article of between 2 and 10 pages (around 500 articles in all) for each important word or word group of the Septuagint. Filling an important gap in the fields of ancient philology and religious studies, the dictionary will be based on original research of the highest scientific level.”

There is a solid group of scholars behind the project as presented on this site, there is a further description, and a page with lots of LXX related links. There is also a page for Contact, in which  you can apply for access.

 

 

Strack-Billerbeck in English?

Strack-BillerbeckLOGOS (Bible Software)  has now put up a call for preorders on an English translation of the famous Strack-Billerbeck Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch. Every NT scholar will know this work, and while there are different opinions out there about its use(fulness), it surely should be considered a valuable tool,- if used carefully.

So far, it has only been available in German, and as many students – and even some scholars,-rumors say… – don’t read German, an English translation should be warrantable. It is now possible to pre-order this set, consisting of the three first volumes (dealing with the NT books, the Excurses are skipped), and in fact, I think the realization of the set is dependent upon a certain numbers of pre-orders. Here is their own description:

Lexham Press is pleased to announce the first-ever English translation of Hermann Strack and Paul Billerbeck’s Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch. Using the Pre-Pub process for this project allows us to invest resources in translating Kommentar zum Neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch only if there is sufficient demand. These books, previously available only to specialists, will soon be accessible to everyone. As the scope of the project becomes clearer, the price might increase, such as when we announce the translator and begin the work of translation. That means users who pre-order the earliest—with the fewest details available—will get the best price.”

From their relevant webpage, it looks like they are halfway to an acceptable amount of pre-orders.

But there is more to come; Logos has made available for pre-order also the Germaan 3 volome set (Vol 1-3) of Strack -Billerbeck, for those who prefer the German language, the ur-text so to say.. GO HERE for further information.

And, they are also offering the possibility of preordering the combined English and German volumes.

For those who know the Logos system (and those who don’t), it is interesting to know that these Logos versions will include the useful tagging system they use. Or to cite their own presentation again:

The Logos edition of Commentary on the New Testament from the Talmud and Midrash is completely indexed, giving near-instant access to any word or reference. The Scripture references are linked to your preferred Bible translation and appear on mouseover. Greek, Latin, and Hebrew words link to the language tools in your library, allowing you to access basic lexical information with a simple right-click.

So, if you want Strack-Billerbeck included in your Logos set-up, you know what to do. 🙂

 

Bible Odyssey

Bible Odyssey is a site presenting information about the Bible and it world. It is relatively new, but still growing, and do already contain a lot of material relevent to the study of the Bible.
Several institutions are behind the site, sponsoring it in various ways, and there are important groups of people supporting it or working withs its informative articles etc.
Visitors will be able to search for people, places or passages, and the information they will find can be in text, photos or videos. The will even be able to Ask a Scholar a question via a specific question form.
Bible Odyssey Website includes the complete text of three Bibles: The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV), the Contemporary English Version (CEVD), and the King James Version (KJV), as well as several other tools.
Have a look at the site by clicking Bible Odyssey.

European Association of Biblical Studies

A mail from the EABS reminded me of the opportunity to mention this association again, and its upcoming conference in 2015.

http://www.eabs.net/site/ is open to all scholars and students of the Bible. It organizes research groups, supports a graduate network and holds an annual conference, usually in early August, at different locations in Europe.
A particular aim of the association is to encourage the flow of scholarship between European countries and especially to make it easier for scholars and students in Central and Eastern Europe to participate with their colleagues in Western Europe and beyond in the exchange of knowledge and ideas.
Members will receive a regular newsletter and are invited to share information about conferences, academic positions and general news about biblical scholarship.

In 2015, EABS’ Annual Meeting will be held in Cordoba, Spain, July 12-15th.

PhD and Postdoctoral Research

The MHS School of Mission and Theology (Stavanger, Norway) will January 1, 2015, start up a three years research project on popular biblical interpretation among the Maasai of East Africa. Linked to this project, two research positions are now open: one PhD Research Fellowship and one Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, both in Biblical Studies, and both starting up January 1, 2015.
The MHS School of Mission and Theology (Stavanger, Norway, http://www.mhs.no/en/) invites applications to two positions—one PhD Research Scholarship and one Postdoctoral Research Scholarship—in Biblical Studies. Both positions are linked to a research project funded by the Norwegian Research Council and directed by Professor Knut Holter: Potentials and Problems of Popular Inculturation Hermeneutics in Maasai Biblical Interpretation.

Read more here.

Resource Pages for Biblical Studies resurrected!

Scan this QR to get the url.
Hey,- my Resource Pages for Biblical Studies are now up again and running!

The site has been moved to a new provider, and the webpages have been completely renovated; they have got a new design, a somewhat changed structure, and a lots of dead links have been removed. All the links in the present version have been tested and found working.

Furthermore, the focus of the present version is a bit narrower that the former old on; now the focus is more strict on Biblical texts, on the social world of the New Testament, and then -of course- on Philo of Alexandria.

I find it close to impossible for one man to keep up with all the studies – books and articles- that are now being published on the Internet related to the New Testament: Hence I have skipped most of these if they not fit my main focuses indicated by my headlines on the main page. Readers will still find that Mark Goodacre’s website (do I have to say the name?) is still The Best for such searches.

The new url is now very similar to the former: http://www.torreys.org/bible
Those who use the old urls (each of the 5 pages had a different one), should now be immediately redirected to this new one.

There are still some links to be added, and more will come in the future. But I would like to publish it now in this form and format. If you have some links to suggest please use the mail adress at the bottom of my website.