Matthias Henze: The Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism and Christianity

Dr. Matthias Henze (Rice University) delivers a lecture on the topic, “In the Company of Angels: The Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism and Christianity,” recorded at Trinity University on March 2, 2017 (lecture begins at 4:36).

Jews and Christians share the belief that at the end of time God will raise the dead and make them live again. Some early Jewish and Christian writers went even further and anticipated a life among the angels. What do we know about the origin of this belief? The hope for the resurrection of the dead did not originate with Christianity, as is often claimed, but has deep roots in ancient Judaism. This talk will trace the origins of the belief in the resurrection from the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament through Judaism of the Second Temple period into the New Testament. Only when the New Testament texts about the resurrection are read side by side with the ancient Jewish texts about the end of time can we fully appreciate what the two religions have in common and where they differ.

Mark Chancey: The Constitutional Conundrum of Teaching “Bible History” in American Public Schools

Professor Mark Chancey delivered a lecture at Trinity University on April 13, 2016 entitled “The Constitutional Conundrum of Teaching ‘Bible History’ in American Public Schools.” The lecture was delivered in the 2016 Lennox Series and Seminar at Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas).

When public schools teach about the Bible, they often frame the subject matter as “Bible History.” In doing so, they are definitely favoring conceptualizations rooted in very particular theological commitments. This approach has a long history, going back to the early 20th century.  Courts prohibit it, but many courses do it.  The courts’ prohibition to not favor or disfavor particular religious viewpoints puts teachers in a pedagogical and constitutional Catch 22.  How does one talk academically about material that makes historical claims without slighting one religious viewpoint or another?

Valarie Ziegler – Submission, Sex, and Sinraptors: The Evangelical Adam as Alpha Male in American Popular Culture

Professor Valarie Ziegler delivered a lecture at Trinity University on March 24, 2016 entitled “Submission, Sex, and Sinraptors: The Evangelical Adam as Alpha Male in American Popular Culture.” The lecture was delivered in the 2016 Lennox Series and Seminar at Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas).

From Kentucky’s famed Creation Museum to People Magazine’s obsession with the ever-expanding Duggar clan of 19 Kids and Counting, Christian conservative evangelical institutions are ubiquitous in American popular culture. Eager to recreate American society in the image of Eden, conservative evangelicals have given us eHarmony, princess purity balls, erotic wife spanking, militant fecundity, and a steady stream of illustrated Bibles depicting dinosaurs romping with Adam and Eve – not to mention a succession of spectacular sex scandals. Most people would be hard put to connect these colorful images to Christian devotion. But conservative evangelicals regard the subordination of women to men as central to God’s purpose in creation, and submissive wives and daughters, as well as dinosaurs in Eden, are useful signifiers of men’s primacy over women. This exaltation of male power and privilege not only gives license in the evangelical world to abusive behaviors (think Josh Duggar) but also impacts important levels of social discourse in the larger American culture, from romance to science, from procreation to presidential politics.

 

Annette Yoshiko Reed: The Bible Beyond the Bible – From Apocrypha to Anime

Annette Yoshiko Reed delivered a lecture at Trinity University on February 17, 2016, on the topic, “The Bible Beyond the Bible: From Apocrypha to Anime.” The lecture was delivered in the 2016 Lennox Series and Seminar at Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas).

Much has been written about the continued creativity surrounding the biblical past in relation to rich histories of Jewish and Christian interpretation of the Bible. But to what degree does the creativity of biblical memory-making go beyond biblical texts and canons? What do we miss when we limit our consideration of the culturally productive encounter with the biblical past to the textual bounds of the most dominant canons today? This lectures explores these questions by looking to some prominent “Old Testament pseudepigrapha” and “New Testament apocrypha” but also by tracing their reception from medieval art to modern novels to contemporary anime.

The slides for the lecture are available here.

Michael Satlow: How the Bible Became Holy

Professor Michael L. Satlow delivered a lecture at Trinity University on January 20, 2016, on the topic, “Who in Antiquity Read the Bible?” The lecture was delivered in the 2016 Lennox Series and Seminar at Trinity University (San Antonio, Texas).

Over the course of a millennium, an odd and disparate collection of ancient Israelite texts were transformed into Scripture, to which both Jews and Christians attributed religious authority. Despite the critical importance of this transformation, it is one that is remains largely shrouded in mystery. To make matters worse, modern scholars are themselves often unclear about what they mean by such key terms as “Scripture,” “authority,” “religious,” and “canon.” In this talk I will suggest a more precise terminology and theoretical model for understanding the development of the Bible and show how this could change our thinking about how, when, and why Scripture came to be.

Michael L. Satlow is the author of various works, including How the Bible Became Holy (Yale University Press, 2015).