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Did Jesus Curse Himself in Mark 8:12?

In my reading today I was surprised to come across this

“Jesus hat nach Mk 8 diese Forderung scharf abgelehnt mit einer damals üblichen Formel, die eigentlich bedingt eine Selbstverfluchung enthält: „(Verflucht will ich sein,) wenn dieses Geschlecht ein Zeichen bekommt!“ D. h. positiv ausgedrückt: „Dieses Geschlecht wird sicherlich kein Zeichen erhalten!“ (Haenchen, Ernst. Der Weg Jesu: Eine Erklärung des Markus-Evangeliums und der kanonischen Parallelen. 2nd ed. dGl. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 1968, p284)

Haenchen states that in Mark 8:12 Jesus self-curses and states "I'll be damned if this generation gets a sign!" This seems shocking on several levels. Firstly, that is not how we would expect Jesus to speak. Secondly, why hadn't I noticed this before - having read Mark through in Greek several times? Thirdly, why is there no trace of this in our English translations?

A quick check of the commentaries reveals that Haenchen is not being controversial to suggest that …
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Taking Words out of Paul's Mouth?

Usually we complain when people put words into our mouths, "I didn't say that!" But there has been a tendency in Bible translation as well as scholarship to take some of Paul's words in 1 Corinthians out of his mouth and place them in "speech marks" to suggest that he is quoting someone else or somehow distancing himself from what is said.



In my article "The Argument against Attributing Slogans in 1 Corinthians 6:12–20" just published in the Journal for the Study of Paul and His Letters Vol. 8, Nos. 1-2 (2018), pp. 147-166, I take issue with this practice. There are three possible slogans (so called because they are pithy axiomatic sayings that Corinthians Christians had allegedly been using to refute or corrupt Paul's teaching) in the passage 1 Cor 6:12-20.

Here it is in the NRSV

6:12 “All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are beneficial. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be dominated by anything. 13 “Food is meant for…

How to use Google Docs and Translate to make a Quick Rough Translation of a Modern Language Document (for FREE)

We all know that there is no substitute for knowing the language and that Google translate can make amusing mistakes. However, the ability to quickly make rough translations saves a great deal of time and also allows you to (carefully) engage in language literature that doesn't come up frequently enough to be worth learning, but has that one article you really want to read.

1. Make a good quality PDF scan of the document with one page per scan. (this may mean twice the number of scan pages, but it will save you time in the long run, trust me) I use a piece of paper to blank the page I don't want to copy in each scan. Ensure the scans are straight and all on the same orientation.

2. Save the resulting PDF in Google Drive.

3. Right click on the PDF in Google Drive and [open with] [Google Docs]. This will open a new window in your browser and will take some time - now is a good time to recite some verb conjugations. This is because Google's OCR is turning the scan into text b…

Christophobia and the Subjectivist Turn: Welker, God the Revealed, review part 3

Welker concludes his opening section with chapters that outline, explore and attack two phenomena he identifies with the Christian West.

First he discusses Jesus Christ as a cultural icon in Western society "present in manifold ways" with the effect that "his presence is desensitizing" (p28). At the same time as Christ's ubiquitous cultrual presence there is a manifest resistance to any sense in which Christ might shape and influence the lives of individuals and societies in any concrete way. Generally this is present in a form of "Christophobia" (a term coined by Joseph Weiler). Even those who speak in terms of "Christian Europe" or "Christian values"  in fact "operate within a not inconsiderable Christological void" as "they are actually harboring culturally chauvinistic ideas only externally associated with Jesus Christ" (p30). He attacks both the western church in its failure to acknowledge the contextualiza…

FREE Eugene Peterson Downloads

A number of lectures available free from Regent College, which is an opportunity not to be missed because they normally charge top dollar for them.



Polyphonic presence: Welker, God the Revealed, review part 2

[picture from here, bears no relation to review, but I like it! Listen here if you're into prog rock.]

Welker (MW) begins with Bonhoeffer, and what MW describes as Bonhoeffer's two legacies. First that "only the suffering God can help us" (p16-18) and second that the kingdom of God encompasses all of human life, that Christian life is essentially "multidimensional, polyphonic" in opposition to the "one-track thinking" of those without faith (p24-27).

While the first "legacy" is part of a well worn theology of the cross, dating back at least to Tertullian and continuing after Bonhoeffer with the likes of Heidegger and Moltman (p17), the second legacy has "hardly been discussed" (p23).

However, MW argues that the two legacies taken together provide a solution for Bonhoeffer's perplexing critique of religion. Bonhoeffer, he argues, refers in his critique of religion to the "religious strategy" that tries to maintain…

ANZABS 2018 program and abstracts

ANZABS CONFERENCE 2018
6-7 December, 2018


Venue: Wesley Hall, Trinity Methodist College,

202A St Johns Rd, Meadowbank, Auckland 1072

Thursday 6 December
9.30 am – REGISTRATION
10.00-10.10 – mihi
10.10-11.00 – Keynote speaker: Robert Myles – Fishing for Eyewitnesses in the Fourth Gospel
11.00-11.30 – Morning tea
11.30-12.00 – Lyndon Drake – Economic Capital in the Hebrew Bible
12.00-12.30 – Anne Aalbers – Resurrection and Celibacy: Two Sides of the Same Coin?
12.30-1.00 – Jonathan Robinson – "And he was with the beasts," (Mark 1:13): Ambiguity,
Interpretation and Mark as a Jewish Author
1.00-2.00 – Lunch
2.00-2.30 – Ben Hudson – Ethical Exhortation and the Decalogue in Ephesians
2.30-3.00 – Csilla Saysell – The Servant as 'a covenant of/for people' in Deutero-Isaiah
3.00-3.30 – Afternoon tea
3.30-4.00 – Jacqueline Lloyd – Did Jesus minister in Gaulanitis?
4.00-4.30 – Mark Keown – Jesus as the New Joshua
4.30 – AGM
Friday 7 December
9.30-10.00 – Ben Ong – Pākehā Readin…