Image of Pythia oracle at Delphi

Helping Jesus Fulfill Prophecy

In his presentation “Helping Jesus Fulfill Prophecy,” at the Westar Institute’s Spring 2017 national meeting, Robert J. Miller of Juniata College gave an entertaining explanation of how ancient Hebrews and Greeks thought of prophecy in order to show how New Testament authors came to treat scripture as a malleable source of authority on Jesus.

Painting of Apollo and Daphne by Andrea Schiavone

The Rape of Eve

Celene Lillie of the Tanho Center in Boulder, Colorado, and author of The Rape of Eve: The Transformation of Roman Ideology in Three Early Christian Retellings of Genesis presented “The Rape of Eve” at the Westar Institute’s Spring 2017 national meeting in Santa Rosa, California, on Thursday, March 23rd. Lillie began and ended by telling [...]

Wendt-web

Swindler or Sincere Teacher? The Apostle Paul in a Wider Field

Surely we’ve all had that awkward experience of being cornered by someone with an urgent cure or insight that simply must be imparted for our benefit—no, for our very existence, our ultimate well-being! You might be entertained to learn that this was a rampant problem in the Roman Empire, too. Yes, it’s true: scamming, swindling, [...]

Incomplete history

Daniel Boyarin and the Christian Invention of Judaism

How did Judaism and Christianity become separate religions? There are three problems with this question: the words religion, Christianity, and Judaism! These words have evolved in meaning over time, and it simply isn’t possible to separate them out so neatly. Nevertheless, renowned Jewish historian Daniel Boyarin helped to puzzle out the conundrum at the Fall [...]

St. Venantius Chapel mosaic. Credit: Kateusz.

The Missing Bible

The history of Christianity is often the history of doctrinal dispute, arguments about what the Church should or should not believe. This history is often framed as if the Church fell into division after existing an original “pure” form, yet historically no such a pure form can be found to have existed. Like most social [...]