Monday, September 24, 2018

Hourly Schedule for the 2018 Symposium on Violence

For those who cannot make the 2018 Symposium on the Theological Reading of Scripture this year on the North Park seminary campus, you can watch the sessions through livestream. I'll update the link here. I'm unsure if they will post recordings of the sessions but if they do, I'll be sure to make them available here on this blog. 
    Please click on the links below for the sessions and times of the symposium from Thursday evening September 27 through Saturday afternoon September 29, 2018. 

The Thursday and Friday sessions are: 
Click the schedule to enlarge

The final Saturday sessions are: 
Click the schedule to enlarge
Hope to see you there, in person or online! MJL

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The 2018 Nils W. Lund Memorial Lectureship

North Park Theological Seminary's Nyvall Hall
Home of the Annual  Nils W. Lund Memorial Lectureship
Live streaming links: here 

This coming September 26-27, 2018, North Park Theological Seminary is hosting its annual Nils W. Lund Memorial Lectureship which invites one Old Testatment lecturer and one New Testament lecturer to speak on their current research and how it is relevant to the mission and ministry of the church. 
    This year, our OT lecturer is Dr. Nancy L. deClaissé-Walford, The Carolyn Ward Professor of Old Testament and Biblical Languages at the McAfee School of Theology. She is the current OT editor of the Word Biblical Commentary series and will be giving the following lectures on Wed morning: 
Dr. Nancy L. deClaissé-Walford - The 2018 Old Testament Lund Lecturer

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

9-10:15am: Lecture 1 – “Let the Floods Clap Their Hands:  An Ecological/Feminist Reading of the Enthronement Psalms (Psalm 93-99)”
10:30-12pm: Lecture 2 – “The Embodied Praise of God in the Songs of Ascents (Psalm 120-134)”




    I'm especially excited that a mentor who was on my doctoral dissertation committee is the NT lecturer: Dr. Seyoon Kim, Emeritus Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary. He has two major works that will be published within the next year: his long-awaited commentary on 1-2 Thessalonians in the Word Biblical Commentary series and a book on Jesus and Paul. The latter is the subject of his lectureship which take place Thursday morning: 

Thursday, September 27, 2018
9-10:15am:  Lecture 1 – “Justification & God’s Kingdom.” Part 1
10:30-12pm: Lecture 2 – “Justification & God’s Kingdom.” Part 2


    The Lund Lectures are live-streamed and the link for the livestream will be posted on the seminary website here. Scroll to the middle of the page and click "Watch Live" about 15 minutes before the 1st lectureship begins. 
    I hope many will join us in person and online. Best, MJL.


Monday, September 10, 2018

The 2018 Symposium on Human Violence


It's already here. The annual Symposium on the Theological Interpretation of Scripture hosted by North Park Theological Seminary in Chicago on September 27-29, 2018. The symposium has always been on the nose about choosing themes that reflect some of the burning questions and issues of our time. But this year's theme seems especially relevant in light of current events domestically (#blacklivesmatter, or even a typical summer on Chicago's south side) and internationally (the persecution of Coptic Christians in Egypt, the armistice between a divided Korea, human trafficking which is equally a domestic issue, the Middle East). The 2018 Symposium theme is on human violence. 

     What is violence? Is violence ever a Christian option? If so, under what conditions? If not, what are the alternatives? How do we pastoral care for those traumatized by violence?

     When a person just a few years ago was gunned down in front of my flat, and I had to go out and scrub the blood from my sidewalk, I became even more personally invested in this topic. And I think many pastors and leaders of the church will be as well. I'm hoping our symposium will be a packed house where those thinking biblically and theologically about the problem of violence and the gospel's radical solution to it will find some answers and even more important questions.

     The poster has the roster and names of those scholars across the disciplinary fields of theological education (biblical studies, theology, church history, ministry and missions) who will be giving our plenary addresses (click on the poster above for a larger view). A special shout out to my academic mentor Dr. Seyoon Kim, Emeritus Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary, who sent me an early copy of his paper entitled "Paul and Violence." 
     If interested in attending the Symposium, the 1st Thursday session is always free for visitors. After that, we ask that participants register officially for the symposium. North Park community members, students, and alumni, of course, receive a discount. More information is found here. Hope to see you there! MJL

Saturday, June 2, 2018

For Teachers Everywhere

I and my sons are big Golden State Warriors fans, since I was born in San Francisco, raised in the East Bay, and brainwashed my boys to love California teams over Chicago. It was a rough start for Game 1 of the 2018 NBA Finals but #30 helped pull out the win. Cleveland made a crucial mistake in the last seconds of play that could have ended the regular game time with their win, not Oakland's. I made a meme of the infamous episode in honor of all professors and teachers in education who know how the following feels:

Best! MJL

The End of the Bibleworks Era


It saddens me to hear that Bibleworks 10 will be the last version produced by the fantastic programmers and staff come June 15, 2018. The good and faithful folks at BW have provided a needed academic application/program/database for Bible scholars, seminarians, and undergraduate students for decades. Hands down, the best Bible program and database out there, I personally have valued Bibleworks for its up-to-date Greek texts on the New Testament, the Septuagint, Josephus and Philo, its Hebrew text for the Old Testament, their lexicons, multiplicity of English translations, and its powerful search engine. 
    While the programmers will try to keep up with periodic updates on the latest version of BW10, inevitably, many Bible scholars and students will have to find an alternative program to use. Personally, I'm not a fan of Logos' library, so I'm at a loss of what new application+tools to adopt. Ughhh! I'm quite discouraged by this loss. Details of the discontinuation of Bibleworks can be read on their website. Below is a screen capture of Michael Bushell's (owner/founder) letter to BW users.

Letter by Michael Bushell to BW users on the end of future editions at the BW site

    For all that Bibleworks has done, thank you for decades of service and ingenuity. I'm grateful for all that I could learn and do with BW4-10 (yes, I've gone through six versions). I wish the team at BW the Lord's blessings in their future endeavors. MJL

Monday, May 28, 2018

Intertextuality in the New Testament Section SBL Denver 2018

Invited Plenary Speakers for the Intertextuality in the New Testament Section
Theme: Ancient Exegetical Methods in
Greco-Roman Discourse and the New Testament
SBL Denver 2018
It's been quite some time since I revisited my blog but I have not forgotten about it. But I did need the timely break to get a sense on how to manage my time as the chair of the biblical field at North Park Theological Seminary.
    In this post, I'm excited to announce the opening plenary session of the Intertextuality in the New Testament Section at the Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting in Denver this November 2018. The theme of the session is Ancient Exegetical Methods in Greco-Roman Discourse and the New Testament. Much ink has been spilt on how the New Testament authors quote, cite, echo, and allude to Old Testament and Jewish texts in their writings, but little has been done on the way they quote, echo, allude or recontextualize Greco-Roman sources. The three main presenters who are giving papers on various intertexts between Greco-Roman discourse and the New Testament are all experts in their respective fields and have masterfully engaged with a wide range of rhetorical, religious, political and philosophical material by Greek and Roman authors. The speakers and their papers titles are listed below. 
     I especially want to highlight that the respondent to each of the papers is Peter Oakes. Anyone having read his 2005 journal article in JSNT entitled "Remapping the Universe," where he outlined four possible ways the New Testament texts allude, echo, appropriate or compete with Roman imperial texts/theology would know that there are few who could comment on not only the specific content of the papers but on the broader issue of how to map out a method for detecting Greco-Roman textual and conceptual allusions in the New Testament. It's sure to be a fantastic session. I hope all attending SBL and reading this post will come to the session on Saturday morning Nov 17, 2018. Best! MJL



Intertextuality in the New Testament
11/17/2018
9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Room: Room TBD - Hotel TBD

Theme: Ancient Exegetical Methods in Greco-Roman Discourse and the New Testament
Each paper will be 25-30min long. Peter Oakes will be responding after each paper for 10min. There is a general discussion at the end of the session

Max Lee, North Park Theological Seminary, Presiding

Bruce Longenecker, Baylor University
Intertextuality in Pompeian Plaster: Can Vesuvian Artifacts Inform Our Expectations about Intertextual Expertise among Sub-Elite Jesus-Followers? (30 min)

Peter Oakes, University of Manchester, Respondent (10 min)

Judith M. Gundry, Yale Divinity School
Roman Household Religion and the Interpretation of 1 Corinthians 7:14 (30 min)

Peter Oakes, University of Manchester, Respondent (10 min)

Paul Trebilco, University of Otago
Echoes in Ephesus: ‘From the beginning’ in the Johannine Letters and in Ephesian Foundation Myths (30 min)

Peter Oakes, University of Manchester, Respondent (10 min)

Discussion (30 min)

Business Meeting (0 min)

Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy New Year! The Year of God's Favor and Strength

Wow! 2017 came and went. I know it's the same 12 months in a year, or 52 weeks, 365 days, 8760 hours, or 525,600 minutes, and so on... but it does feel like it goes by much faster as I get older. And before I knew it, 2017 raced by without many blog posts. My life just became too busy to keep up with weekly posts. I did not even keep up with monthly ones. Probably, for the time being, I will post randomly and occasionally. I hope this is just an interim period. As soon as I get some book projects off my desk, and perhaps finish my tenure as chair of the biblical field at North Park, I will come back to the blog and reignite it with a flurious succession of original articles, book reviews, pastoral reflections, and historical-cultural notes from the world of the New Testament and early Christianity. 
     But for now, blessings to all this 2018!


FYI, this is the year of the dog according to the Chinese Lunar calendar! It's the year of fortune and health. May the Lord bless the work of your hands and give you strength to serve Him faithfully this 2018. MJL