Author Archives: matthewnovenson

Edinburgh at SBL 2012


(Matthew Novenson) Like many of our readers, a number of us at the CSCO will be traveling to Chicago next week for the Annual Meetings of the Society of Biblical Literature and American Academy of Religion. Edinburgh-related highlights include papers from my colleagues Paul Foster and Larry Hurtado, British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow Sean Adams, postgrad students Mark Batluck, Seth Ehorn, Brendon Witte, and Michael Zolondek, and recent alumnus Scott Manor. As ever, we will be helping host the Scottish Universities Reception, where prospective postgrad students are welcome to come meet us members of staff and learn about early Jewish and early Christian studies at Edinburgh.


Edinburgh Biblical Studies Research Seminar: Schedule for January-April 2013


(Matthew Novenson) As convener of the Biblical Studies Research Seminar at Edinburgh, I am happy to announce that the schedule for semester 2 (January through April 2013) has been finalized. Dates, speakers, and paper titles are listed below. Unless otherwise noted, all seminars are held on Fridays 11:15am-12:30pm in the Martin Hall, New College, University of Edinburgh. Visitors are welcome.

18 January 2013: Mr Hongsuk Um, University of Edinburgh, “The Observation of Celestial Phenomena in Matthew 2:1-12”

25 January 2013: Prof James Davila, University of St Andrews, “Translating the Hekhalot Literature”

1 February 2013: Mr Seth Ehorn, University of Edinburgh, “The Citation of Ps 68(67).19 in Eph 4.8 within the Context of Early Christian Use of the Psalter”

8 February 2013: Dr Sean Adams, University of Edinburgh, “Luke and Rhetorical Education: The Role of the Progymnasmata and a Response to Recent Proposals”

15 February 2013: Ms Maegan Gilliland, University of Edinburgh, “The Text of the Pauline Epistles and Hebrews in Clement of Alexandria: Methodology and Initial Results”

22 February 2013: No seminar; Innovative Learning Week

1 March 2013: Mr Brendon Witte, University of Edinburgh, “The ‘Folly’ of the Crucified Son of Man”

8 March 2013: Prof Joachim Schaper, University of Aberdeen, “Does Monotheism Breed Violence? A Look at the Israelite Sources, in Dialogue with Jan Assmann”

15 March 2013: Mr Lonnie Bell, University of Edinburgh, “Transmission Character in the Second-Century Text of John: An Interview with our Earliest Fragmentary Copies”

22 March 2013: Prof John Barclay, University of Durham, “Paul and the Gift: Gift-Theory, Grace and Critical Moments in the Interpretation of Paul”

29 March 2013: Mr Josaphat Tam, University of Edinburgh, “Preceding or Following: Where Does John 2:23-25 Belong?”

5 April 2013: Dr Peter Altmann, University of Zurich, “The Effects of Economic Changes on Theology in Biblical Texts”

Followup: St Andrews Conference on Galatians and Christian Theology


(Matthew Novenson) Last week the good people at the University of St Andrews put on a very fine conference on Galatians and Christian theology (see my previous post). Edinburgh was well represented: A number of our postgrads attended, I gave a paper on Ioudaismos in Galatians 1, and Oliver O’Donovan gave an excellent keynote paper on flesh and spirit in Galatians 5. Other highlights included N. T. Wright’s keynote paper on the messiahship of Jesus in Galatians and Richard Hays’s keynote paper assessing the adequacy of the descriptor “apocalyptic” for the theology of Galatians. There was also a lively discussion of the notorious Pauline phrase pistis Christou and the theological stakes in its translation. Thanks to Mark Elliott, Beth Tracy, and the other St Andrews staff and students for their hard work. I believe that a published volume of conference proceedings is in the works, so interested parties should keep an eye out for that.

St Andrews Conference on Galatians and Christian Theology


(Matthew Novenson) Of special interest to our readers who reside in or can easily get to Scotland: Next week (10-13 July) brings the St Andrews Conference on Galatians and Christian Theology. I am giving a paper entitled “Taking the ‘Judaism’ out of ‘Paul and Judaism’? Ioudaismos in Galatians 1,” with a response from Mark Elliott. Keynote speakers are Oliver O’Donovan, N. T. Wright, and Richard Hays. Main papers include the likes of John Barclay, Beverly Gaventa, and Bruce McCormack, with session papers from Judith Gundry, Rodrigo Morales, and other very fine exegetes and theologians. It looks to be an excellent conference, maintaining the tradition established by previous St Andrews conferences on Genesis, John, and Hebrews. My understanding is that registration is still open. Details here:

At Edinburgh this week and next: the Judaean-Roman War


(Matthew Novenson) In anticipation of Prof. Steve Mason’s lectures on the Judaean-Roman War next week (12-13 June in Martin Hall, New College; see the “Welcome and Events” tab above for further details), the classics reading group will be discussing Josephus’s War and Life tomorrow (Thursday, 7 June) at 1:00 pm in the Porteous Room, New College. Interested parties are invited to the reading group, and all the more so to Mason’s lectures.