We’re pleased to announce that Helen Bond, Jens Schröter (Berlin), and Chris Keith (St Mary’s, Twickenham) recently received a small grant award from the British Academy. The grant funds a planning year for the three of us to work towards a major three-volume reference work on the reception of the Jesus tradition in the first three centuries of early Christianity in both literary and visual cultures. Accompanying this reference volume will be several monographs on focused topics, annual conferences in London, Edinburgh, and Berlin, and a range of other Knowledge-Transfer events.
The larger grant application (which we will apply for at the end of this calendar year) will include funds for at least three PhD studentships (tuition plus stipend), one each at St Mary’s, Edinburgh, and Berlin. These students will go through their respective programmes as something of a cohort attached to the grant project, meeting together at the annual conference and (hopefully) publishing their studies as part of the overall project. We are still a short distance from that, but this small research grant is the first step in that direction. If there are any potential PhD students who would like to be part of this exciting project, please do not hesitate to contact Chris Keith in the first instance (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Helen Bond (email@example.com). Please note, though, that any PhD studentships would not start before Autumn 2014 at the earliest.
The audio of Witherington’s lecture is here and the Q&A which followed is here. The recordings are about 45 minute sand 30 minutes respectively.
(Helen Bond) A reminder that Prof Ben Witherington III (Asbury Theological Seminary) will be in New College this Tuesday (30th April). He’ll lecture at 11.15 in the Martin Hall on the topic of: ‘Almost Thou Persuadest Me….’ Why You Ignore Rhetorical Interpretation of the NT at your Peril.
As always, all are welcome.
The (Provisional) Programme is up for the Peter Conference – just look under Events at the top of this page and follow the links for the conference. Things might change a bit, but not too much, and the start and finish times are pretty fixed now. We have 25 speakers lined up, so it’s going to be a busy 3 days! There’s still time to register.
(Larry Hurtado): One our former PhD students, Michael Kruger, has produced a fine study of the emergence of the New Testament canon: Canon Revisited: Establishing the Origins and Authority of the New Testament Books (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2012). Kruger’s first book (arising from his PhD thesis here) was The Gospel of the Savior : An Analysis of P.Oxy.840 and Its Place in the Gospel Traditions of Early Christianity (Leiden: Brill, 2005), in which he focused on a portion of an unidentified early Christian gospel-like text, P. Oxryrhynchus 840, producing a “360″ study of pretty much all features and questions relating to this fascinating text.
In Canon Revisited, Kruger (addressing a diverse readership including “general” readers as well as scholars) offers a case for whether “the Christian belief in the canon is intellectually justified” (p. 11). He shows impressive acquaintance with the primary data and also with an oceanic body of scholarship on the issues treated. Essentially, Kruger argues that the NT writings evidence an awareness by their authors that they were writing with a certain sense of authority (as, e.g., in Paul’s letters to his churches) and/or with a profound aim of providing reliable bases for Christian faith and practice. In this sense, he contends, the NT writings already have the germ of a canonical/scriptural role.
It is, of course, a position that will generate critique as well as consent. But Kruger makes his case clearly, without special pleading, and with a wide compass. And we’re always pleased to see the further academic productivity of our PhD graduates. Congratulations, Mike!