CSBS 2010 Programme

Unless noted, all events are in the CL and MB buildings

 

Friday May 28, 2010

 

14:00-19:00 (MB 12-101)

Executive Committee Meeting / Réunion du Comité Exécutif

 

Saturday May 29, 2010

 

8:45-11:30 (CL 217)

Hebrew Bible/Old Testament / Bible Hébraēque/Ancien Testament I

Chair / Président: Alexander Damm (University of Toronto)

 

8:45-9:15 Adam Brown (McMaster Divinity College)

Discovering David in Light of 1 Samuel 25: A Narrative Critical Reading of 1 Samuel 24-26

The objective of this paper will be to demonstrate that 1 Sam 25 is an integral component of 1 Sam 24-26 and that it is an essential chapter in order to fully understand the narrator’s characterization of David. This paper will be structured around three main sections. The first will establish the literary coherence of 1 Sam 24-26. The second will identify and assess David’s men (in 1 Sam 24/26) and Abigail (in 1 Sam 25) as David’s rhetorical alter-egos. The third will draw conclusions about David’s character from these observations. The thesis to be defended is that in 1 Sam 24-26 David acts with both restraint and unrestraint and that these seemingly opposite manifestations of character both stem from David’s political brilliance and moral deficiency.

 

9:15-9:45 Daniel Miller (Bishops University)

False Prophets and Prophets of Falsehood: The Question of Cultic Legitimacy in Israelite Prophecy

In Deut 18:22, Moses declares: “If a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD but the thing does not take place or prove true, it is a word that the LORD has not spoken”—yet in 2 Kgs 22:20 the prophetess Huldah assures Josiah that his end will be peaceful and he is later killed by Pharaoh Neco. Ostensibly, “the Lord GOD does nothing, without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets” (Am 3:7)—yet Elisha claims that the reasons for a woman’s distress have been hidden from him by his god (2 Kgs 4:27). Elsewhere, we are told that the words of a false prophet can indeed prove correct—but this is just a testing of faith by Yahweh (Deut 13:1–3). In this paper, it will be argued that there was deep uncertainty in Israelite society regarding the cultic legitimacy of prophecy. Consequently, prophets and their allies would have been compelled to find means to substantiate prophetic bona fides, an undertaking not uncomplicated given a lack of public consensus regarding what “prophecy” was.

 

9:45-10:00 Break

 

10:00-10:30 Marvin Lloyd Miller (University of Manchester)

Shaking out the Skirt: A Social Vision of Nehemiah Regarding Debt Slavery

The account from Nehemiah 5 is the most definitive example of the result of expropriatory practices within the province of Yehud. It is the aim of this paper to view Nehemiah 5 in its wider literary and social contexts in order to suggest possible cultural antecedents that can assist in understanding the scope of debt slavery and the effects of the remission of debts. Since Israel had no king, Nehemiah was called upon to act as God’s representative in hearing the cries of the oppressed and bring justice to the disenfranchised.

 

10:30-11:00 Ken M. Penner (St. Francis Xavier University)

Why the Differences between LXX and MT Isaiah?

Although Isaiah in the LXX and the MT differ considerably, the differences are due not to the translator's Vorlage (which is close to the MT) but rather to his translation style. Yet what that Übersetzungsweise is has been a question for debate in recent years. Arie van der Kooij (following Ziegler and Seeligmann) argues that the Greek translator of Isaiah contemporized the book of Isaiah by finding fulfilment of its prophecies in his own day. However, Ron Troxel finds no basis for such Erfüllungsinterpretation and claims rather that the differences are due mainly to a "desire to convey the sense of the book as clearly as possible in Greek." This paper examines the differences between the Hebrew and the Greek in the first chapters of Isaiah in order to find which theory best explains why the translator made these changes.

 

11:00-11:30 Jonathan Vroom (University of Toronto)

Recasting Mishpatim: Legal Innovation in Leviticus

One of the issues that is particularly important in discussions of inner-scriptural exegesis, particularly in the field of biblical law, is the relationship that a text was meant to have with its source. Were later texts intended to replace their sources, or supplement them? While the bulk of this paper will examine one instance of textual reuse in the Holiness Code (particularly the reuse of laws from the Covenant Code in Lev 24:17-21), the larger issue that my paper will address is the methodological complexity involved in determining motivations for textual reuse. In the end I will argue that the H authors’ rhetorical strategy relies on the continued preservation of their source, and therefore H was meant to accompany CC.

 

9:00-11:30 (CL 215)

Second Temple Judaism

Chair / Président: Michele Murray (Bishop’s University)

 

9:00-9:30 Jonathan Bernier (McMaster University)

Sirach’s Synagogue: Reconsidering the Institutional Forms of Pre-Maccabean Synagogues

Frequently do scholars state that Sirach does not refer to synagogues. Less frequently, however, do they take into account recent work which has examined more closely the diversity of institutional forms among ancient synagogues (cf. the work of Philip Harland, Lee Levine and Anders Runesson). The word συναγωγή appears 10 times in Sirach, while the closely related term κκλησία appears 13; of these 23 cumulative occurrences, at least 10 refer to a specific institution. In addition, in 51:23 there is a reference to a οκος Ļαιδείας, i.e. a “house of instruction.” This paper will ask ‘To what sort of institution(s) are these terms referring?” Starting with Runesson’s distinction between public and association synagogues, it will be argued that the terms συναγωγή and κκλησία refer to the former while the οκος Ļαιδείας refers to the latter. This paper will also consider the possible implications of this argument for our knowledge of synagogue origins and development.

 

9:30-10:00 Frank Clancy (Waterloo)

The Exile and Ben Sira

Ben Sira is the earliest available witness to Biblical stories, but, it also poses some difficult questions about the sources he used.  There are no references to the Egyptian exile or the Exodus, and the Babylonian exile and the return.  Possibly, Ben Sira left these out for ideological reasons or because they were unimportant.  However, it is also possible they did not exist at that time.  Concentrating on chronology and ideology, I shall examine the “Return from Babylon" theme to see if there is evidence to support the claim that these stories did not exist for Ben Sira.

 

10:00-10:15 Break

 

10:15-10:45 Carmen Palmer (Emmanuel College)

“Wisdom for the Righteous of the World: Wisdom of Solomon as a Universal, Mosaic tô Law”

While Second Temple biblical and extra-biblical texts (both esteemed Palestinian and Diasporic) often refer to “Mosaic tô,” “tôrČ,” or “nomos,” the question often remains as to whether these “laws” referenced actually denote the tradition of the “written Pentateuch.”  For example, the Jewish Hellenistic Greek text of the Wisdom of Solomon refers to a “nomos,” which in this example is often deemed not to be “written-Mosaic-Pentateuchal- tôrČ,” and is instead considered some form of Hellenistic natural, or universal, law  (Winston).  This paper devises a three-part textual framework to apply to this particular nomos, and concludes that in fact, Wis Sol references a written-Mosaic-Pentateuchal- tôrČ.  To further test this textual method, the paper concludes with the application of this framework to two other Second Temple textual examples, namely Ben Sira 24’s reference to “Mosaic law,” and also to the DSS Community Rule’s (1QS 5 and 6) reference to “reverting to the law of Moses.”

 

10:45-11:15 Heather Macumber (St. Michael's College)
Earthly Angels in the Prayer of Jacob and the Prayer of Joseph
In many Jewish texts, fluidity between the boundaries of heaven and earth is evident. Humans are transported to the heavenly realm and  angels serve as messengers to earth. In the Prayer of Jacob, this 
blurring of boundaries is demonstrated as the petitioner is identified as an earthly angel, one who has achieved immortality. Likewise, the Prayer of Joseph also describes the elevated status of Jacob as an angel. This paper seeks to identify the nature of an “earthly angel” and how these liturgical texts relate to other angelomorphic traditions found especially in the Dead Sea Scrolls.

 

11:15-11:30 Discussion

 

8:45-11:30 (CL 221)

New Testament I

Chair / Président: Edith M. Humphrey (Pittsburgh Theological Seminary)

 

8:45-9:15 Alain Gignac (Université de Montréal)

“We know that everything that Law says.” Intertextuality, Enunciation, and Characterization in Rom 3:9-20.

The interpretation of Rom 3:9-20 seems so clear (an indictment which proves or simply illustrates the universality of sin) that there are only a handful of papers dedicated to these verses (Hays 1980, Keck 1977, Moyise 1995). From a rhetorical perspective, it is an argument based on the authority of Scripture in order to prove that all are under Sin’s domination. Nonetheless, the mechanisms of this text are very sophisticated. Beyond rhetorical analysis, my goal is to demonstrate the intertextual, narrative and enunciative resources used in the text.

 

9:15-9:45 Mona Tokarek LaFosse (University of Toronto)

Age Hierarchy and Widows in 1 Timothy 5:3-16

Scholars have long debated the historical situation that informed the extended discussion of widows in 1 Timothy 5:3-16. A consideration of age hierarchy among women in the ancient Mediterranean clarifies some of the enigmatic statements in this text. This paper suggests that the author exalted the 60+ widows (5:9-10) as role models not in contrast to the younger widows (5:11), but in contrast to a group of middle-aged women who were not behaving “properly.” In the view of the author of 1 Timothy, these middle-aged women were shirking their responsibilities as models, teachers and patrons for the younger widows in the community, whose behaviour was out of control as a result (5:11-15).

 

9:45-10:15 Ryan S. Schellenberg (University of St. Michael’s College)

The Rhetoric of Desperation: Boasting and Apostleship in 2 Corinthians 10–13

Second Corinthians 10–13 has, since Windisch, been regarded a Fool’s Speech (Narrenrede): Although Paul’s boasting may seem excessive, it comes from behind the mask of a fool, and thus can only be considered an ironic parody. More recently, these chapters have been read as an exemplum of ancient self-praise (periautologia): Although Paul’s boasting may strike a modern reader as unseemly, it in fact accords with ancient prescriptions for boasting without causing offense. Upon closer reading of the ancient texts to which 2 Cor 10–13 is ostensible comparable, it becomes clear that neither proposal can be sustained. Moreover, both are historically misleading, obscuring the precariousness of Paul’s relationship with the Corinthians by positing a dispassionate Paul who chooses among his rhetorical options rather than a desperate Paul who clings to his self-declared identity as apostolos in the face of widespread rejection.

 

10:15-10:30 Break

 

11:00-11:30 Gary Yamasaki (Columbia Bible College)

Empathizing With a Villain: A Perspective-Critical Analysis of Saul’s Damascus Road Experience (Acts 9:1-9)

Given Saul’s introduction into the story line of the Book of Acts as a villainous persecutor, it is only natural that the audience would delight in the trauma he experiences as he is stopped dead in his tracks on the Damascus Road.  Yet, a reading of this passage elicits empathy for Saul in his trauma, and not delight.  One explanation for this empathy could be that the audience is aware that Saul goes on to be a hero, and thus, feels for him now as he goes through this suffering.  However, a better explanation is supplied by a perspective-critical analysis, that is, a study of the point-of-view dynamics of this passage.  Such an analysis reveals that the way the narrator uses point of view positions the audience to have a subjective experience of Saul.  According to point-of-view theory, a subjective experience of a character leads the audience to empathize with that character, regardless of whether he or she has been characterized positively or negatively earlier in the narrative.  Therefore, even though Saul has been characterized strictly as a villain to this point in the narrative, the narrator’s point-of-view moves engender a sense of empathy for him within the audience.

 

 

11:30-12:30 (MB 3-210)

Lunch for all Students and New Members / Casse-croěte pour étudiants et membres nouveaux 

 

12:30-14:00 (MB 3-210)

Special Session Organized by Students / Session spéciale organisée par les étudiants
Presiding: Sonya Kostamo (Student Liaison, CSBS Executive)

Finding Your Own Voice: Insights into the Transition from Student to Scholar
Successful graduate students immerse themselves in the scholarship of others, but such immersion can sometimes overwhelm or frustrate the unique voice of students in their own research and writing. This year’s student session will discuss aspects of professional development related to individuality and includes comments from a panel of scholars regarding this transition from student to author, teacher, and contributing member of the academic community. Come with questions for the panel and gain helpful insights that will inspire you as a student to cultivate your own voice as you work towards contributing creative and original scholarship.

 

14:00-15:20 (MB S2-330)

Student Essay Prizes / Prix pour travaux d’étudiant(e)s
Chair / Président:
Francis Landy (University of Alberta)

 

14:30-15:00 Jeremias Prize: James Magee (Vancouver School of Theology)

Jesus and Augustus – Divine Sons: Multivalent Lukan Sonship in the Light of Graeco-Roman Ruler Worship

In the wake of a growing sensitivity to the affects of imperialism on colonized indigenous populations, an understanding brought about by postcolonial critique, the New Testament writings continue to be mined closely for their relationships to empire.  Against the backdrop of Graeco-Roman ruler worship as it developed in the ancient Mediterranean east, this paper will explore the various models of divine sonship present in Luke and Acts, proposing that they were strategic appropriations of the different ways in which Augustus was considered divine.  It will further be suggested, through the lens of James Scott's work on public and hidden transcripts, that these appropriations were intended by Luke to extol Jesus as a divine son over and against the Roman Emperor.

15:00-15:10 Questions

 

15:10-15:40 Founders Prize: Eric R. Montgomery (McMaster University)

Divine Knowledge as a Requisite for Communion with the Angels

This paper examines the soteriological function of divine knowledge in the Qumran community.  I contend that the Qumran covenanters believed that God’s gift of divine knowledge allowed them to commune with the angels in joint worship of God. The first section of my paper elucidates the nature of this divine knowledge. In the second section I show that this knowledge is what made human communion with the angels possible. In the third section I prove that divine knowledge had the power to effect communion because it restores the human recipients to their original, Adamic state.

 

15:40-15:50 Questions

 

15:30-17:00 (MB S2-330)

CSBS Annual General Meeting / Assemblée annuelle de la SCÉB

Presiding / Présidence: Francis Landy (University of Alberta)

 

17:15-18:15 (MB S2-330)

Presidential Address / Conférence du Président
Presiding / Présidence: Margaret Y. MacDonald (St. Francis Xavier University)

Francis Landy (University of Alberta)

"I and Eye in Isaiah or Gazing at the Invisible"

 

19:00-22:00 (Weinstein and Gavinos, 1434 Rue Cr.)

CSBS Annual Dinner / Banquet annuel de la SCÉB

Sunday May 30, 2010

 

9:00-11:30 (CL 221)

Hebrew Bible/Old Testament / Bible Hébraēque/Ancien Testament II

Chair / Président: Erin Runions (Pomona College)

 

9:00-9:30 Shayna Sheinfeld (McGill University)

From Words to Actions: An analysis of 4 Ezra 9:26-10:58

In recent research on the fourth vision in 4 Ezra, the character of mourning woman is thought to act as a physical being that propagates the movement of roles within the story: Ezra replaces the role of comforter that Uriel plays in “visions” 1-3, while the woman moves into Ezra’s previous role. However, Ezra does not provide comfort but instead berates the mourning woman, who refuses to be consoled. In verse 10:25, she is transformed into the heavenly Zion and Ezra’s experience of the physical sensations associated with this transformation is beyond anything he has yet felt.  Through literary analysis this paper will show that there is not an exchange of roles, but that the fourth vision is set up to move the text as a whole from dialogue to apocalyptic revelation, with specific emphasis on the language and structure of 4 Ezra 9:26-10:58.

 

9:15-9:45 Suk Yee (Anna) Lee (McMaster Divinity College)

An Analysis of Intertextuality as a Methodology in the Discipline of Hebrew Bible Studies

There has been an explosion of interest in intertextuality in the last two decades. Critics have begun to realize that a text is not an isolated object, but rather it is embedded in a larger web of texts. However, the frequent use of the term with diverse definitions is threatening to blunt its uniqueness. The major problem is that intertextuality has been developed as a theoretical rather than a methodological term. The purpose of this paper is to contain intertextuality ideologically so that its literary notion can be applied fruitfully as an exegetical methodology to the study of the Hebrew Bible. Three interrelated hermeneutical assumptions will be proposed, and they are: (1) The definition of a text; (2) The nature of textual relationships; and (3) The agents of textual meaning.

 

9:45-10:00 Break

 

10:00-10:30 W. Derek Suderman (Conrad Grebel)

(Over) Hearing Jussives at Work

Psalms scholarship has paid less attention to shifting address from one audience to another than to formal elements. In one particularly striking example, Anneli Aejmelaeus identifies “traditional prayer” with imperative address to God and explicitly eliminates jussives from her discussion due to their inherent ambiguity. In contrast, this paper will argue that it is this ambiguity that permits jussives to function rhetorically within individual complaint psalms to address divine and human audiences simultaneously. Rather than being sidelined, jussives should be recognized as highly significant for their rhetorical function. 

 

10:30-11:00 Nick Meyer (McMaster University)

“What is Man?” Creation and Anthropology in the Hebrew Bible to the Hodayot

A prominent form critical element of the Hodayot found among the Dead Sea Scrolls has been termed “Doxologies of Lowliness”, after the so-called “Doxologies of Righteousness” of the Hebrew Bible. These Qumran texts share with their biblical counterparts an emphasis on the righteousness of God, but along with amplifying the emphasis on human sinfulness they ground human lowliness and sin in humanity’s very creatureliness rather than simply its behaviour. This paper will investigate select Hebrew Bible texts which combine the themes of creation and anthropology, including the P and J sources in the primordial history of Genesis, Psalms 8 and 139, and a selection of texts from the Book of Job, in order to compare their own formulations of the tension between human creatureliness and sinfulness and to uncover any tradition-historical connections which may illuminate the Doxologies of Lowliness.

 

11:00-11:30 Carla Sulzbach (McGill University)

Elijah at Horeb: the dark side of Moses on Sinai

The Pentateuch contains the familiar account of Moses’ encounters with the Divine on Sinai/Horeb. In I Kings, however, a much less known story is found about the prophet Elijah who likewise had an intense spiritual experience at Horeb. This story, which shows many similarities to the earlier narrative, appears to lampoon that of Moses. This paper will explore those similarities and especially emphasize the role dreams and visions play in the two stories. The notion that both characters traverse otherworldly realities is something that is often overlooked in studies that treat the two narratives together, thereby missing a significant point that the stories seek to make. It is also argued that it is primarily this element that accounts for the afterlife that the two characters enjoy together in Second Temple period texts and beyond.

 

8:45-11:30 (CL 217)

New Testament World

Chair / Président: David Hawkin (Memorial University)

 

8:45-9:15 John S. Kloppenborg (University of Toronto)

Explusions from Associations and the Aposynagogos of John

The appearance of aposynagogos in John 9:22; 12:42; 16:2 has mainly been discussed in relation to the alleged revision of the Birkat ha-Minim either at Yavneh or sometime later. This paper explores the practice of exclusion of members from associations of the first and second centuries of the common era as a way to broaden the discussion of what was at stake in the exclusions of which the fourth gospel seems to speak.

 

9:15-9:45 André Gagné (Concordia University)

Polemicizing Against Other Gnostics: Gnosis and Salvation in the Gospel of Judas

Most scholars are of the opinion that the Gospel of Judas is a Sethian Gnostic text written against the emerging Proto-Orthodox church and its traditional practices and beliefs. But the debate on whether or not Judas Iscariot is characterized as Jesus’ favourite disciple is still ongoing. In relation to this question of Judas’ role, scholars have neglected to understand the value of gnosis as the means of attaining salvation in the Gospel of Judas. This paper explores the idea that the Judas Gospel polemicizes not only against Proto-Orthodox Christians, but also possibly against certain groups who solely rely on gnosis for salvation.

 

9:45-10:15 Ian Brown (University of Regina)

The Literary Unity of the Gospel of Thomas

In recent years the Gospel of Thomas has garnered a great deal of scholarly attention, especially in its relation to Christian origins and the historical Jesus. As a result two issues have dominated the scholarly imagination: the question of Thomas’ date, and the question whether or not Thomas betrays a literary relationship with the New Testament. At one time these questions were of interest, but to continue to dwell on these issues is to ignore the many other questions we could be asking about Thomas. In my paper I intend to address one of these other questions: does Thomas show signs of literary unification, and if so, in what ways? By asking these questions I hope to move past the quagmire created by issues of date/(in)dependence and raise some important issues that are seldom addressed.

 

10:15-10:30 Break

 

10:30-11:00 Christophe Rico (Ecole Biblique et Archéologique Franćaise, Jerusalem)

Speaking Koine Greek as a living language

Very few people in the world are able to read a book in Ancient Greek without dictionary as one would read a text in French or Spanish. Many are those who have spent long years learning ancient Greek with traditional methods only to feel completely disappointed by the results of their study. We need to explore new avenues in order to find an efficient way of learning ancient Greek. Two conditions seem to be necessary in order to reach that goal: choosing a single dialect and period of time among the different varieties of ancient Greek and following a method which draws its inspiration from techniques applied nowadays for teaching modern languages. This paper describes a new textbook that has been published recently which is grounded on the so called “total physical response” method and on a full immersion in Koine Greek.

 

11:00-11:30 Alexander Damm (University of Toronto)

Revelation’s Appeal to Rhetorical Form in the Judgement of Rome (Rev 18:1-24)

In recent years, scholarship on the Book of Revelation has demonstrated the impact of Greco-Roman rhetorical convention on the composition of visions. An important tradition whose rhetorical form has missed such analysis, however, is John’s vision of the judgement of Rome (Rev 18:1-24). While commentaries point to its dependency on genres that include Greek tragedy and Hebrew laments, the vision has a striking if basic rhetorical form: a tripartite sequence of proofs that begins with an appeal to character, proceeds to an appeal to logic, and concludes with an appeal to emotions. Whichever genres have influenced John’s composition, John has arranged his materials in a rhetorical manner. This paper seeks to articulate a significant rhetorical influence upon John’s work, and so to underscore the careful efforts that inform the composition of visions.

 

8:45-12:00 (CL 215)

The Book of Chronicles and Early Second Temple Historiography (Session 1)

Chair / Président: Patricia Kirkpatrick (McGill University)

 

8:45-9:15 Tyler F. Williams (The King’s University College)

Chronicles and Early Second Temple Historiography:

The last quarter-century has seen a remarkable resurgence in scholarship on the book of Chronicles. Much of this research has focused on the nature of the Book of Chronicles in the light of early Second Temple Historiography. This paper will evaluate the state of Chronicles research, with a particular focus on contributions from members of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies.

 

9:15-9:45 Peter Sabo (University of Alberta)

To be, or not to be (King Saul), that is the question: Conjuring up the old problem of the Saul Narrative in Chronicles

If one assumes, as most do, that the Chronicler was aware of the book of Samuel (or some version of it), then it is only natural to ask why he chose to omit almost all the chapters of Samuel that deal with Saul. Gary Knoppers notes that the question can be asked in a different manner: Given that Chronicles focuses exclusively on the Davidic monarchy centred in Jerusalem, why offer any attention to Saul at all? Indeed, a survey of the major interpretive options on the issue thus far is evidence that it is the question(s) and presupposition(s) of the scholar which dictate what answer is provided. Scholarship should not make the same mistake as Saul and conjure up a ghost who tells us only what we already know. The present study presupposes that texts inform the reader, not of the period(s) about which they are written about, but primarily of the period(s) in which they were written. There is both a Saul Polemic and an anti-Saul Polemic present in the text of Chronicles; these features work in tension and in tandem with one another, as both would directly relate to the present experience of readers in the community of Achaemenid Yehud. 

 

9:45-10:15 Mark J. Boda (McMaster Divinity College)

 Peering through the Cloud of Incense: Davidic Dynasty and Community in the Chronicler’s Perspective

The purpose of this paper is to describe the multi-dimensional nature of the debate over the future of David and his dynasty in Chronicles and then to propose a both-and rather than an either-or solution.  The goal is not to convert various proposals to a lowest common denominator, nor to create a dialectal synthesis, nor to create hermeneutical skepticism and discourage any resolution.  Rather it is to argue that the various viewpoints noted throughout the recent history of interpreting Chronicles are valid and have revealed important aspects of the Chroniclers’ intention which reflect the worldview of the interpretive community represented by the books of Chronicles.

 

10:15-10:30 Break

 

10:30-11:00 Louis Jonker (Stellenbosch University)

Of Jebus, Jerusalem and Benjamin: The Chronicler's Sondergut in 1 Chronicles 21 against the background of the late Persian Era in Yehud.

1 Chronicles 21 has been scrutinized by biblical scholars for many reasons – one of which is the addition of verse 6 in the census narrative, indicating that Joab did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering. There is still no consensus among scholars on why the Chronicler mentioned these exclusions. Particularly, the exclusion of Benjamin generates different theories: some relate it to the fact that the ark was in Jerusalem; others to the fact that the tabernacle was in Gibeon; and still others to the fact that Joab was actually accused of not completing the counting of the people. In my paper I will investigate how this addition of the Chronicler relates to another piece of Sondergut at the end of that chapter (21:28-22:1) in which the place of temple-building is aetiologically related to the threshing floor of Ornan, the Jebusite. The interrelationship of Jebus, Jerusalem and Benjamin will be evaluated against the socio-political backdrop of the late Persian period – particularly from the perspective of the province Yehud. Recent work on the tribe of Benjamin (such as, for example, the essay by Philip Davies, "The trouble with Benjamin" [2007]) will be taken into account in this investigation.

 

11:00-11:30 Isaac Kalimi (East Carolina University)

The Rise and Fall of King Solomon: Deuteronomistic versus Chronistic History

Overall, Solomon is represented as a more earthly and human figure in the book of Kings.  Solomon and his kingdom have a climax, but also failures and downfall.  He was granted wisdom and wealth by the Lord.  However, the wisdom and the wealth did not remain for him at the end of his life.  Strikingly, Solomon had many political marriages to foreign women and became an apostate.  In fact these also add to his earthy description.  The portrait of Solomon in Chronicles, however, is more idealistic than any other king in ancient Israel.  He has been chosen by the Lord to be a king and Temple builder.  He kept completely his father’s testament in both parts: building the Temple and keeping Torah commandments.  Solomon was granted wisdom and wealth by God and these remained so all his lifetime.  He never acted inappropriately in or out of his kingdom and also never transgressed.  Solomon did not cause to the split of the united kingdom of Israel and the fall of the empire. The difference provides a clear perspective into the literary, theological, and pedagogical goals of the Deuteronomistic and Chronistic historians.

 

11:30-12:00 John Wright (Point Loma Nazarene University)

Divine Retribution in Herodotus and the Chronicler

The Chronicler's historiography was written in the time of the great flowering of Hellenistic historiography.  While recent scholarship by Gary Knoppers has established ties to the Greek genealogists, this paper will seek to pursue commonalities and differences between the Greek and Judean historiography by examining descriptions of divine retribution in Chronicles and Herodotus.  Both insist that certain actions will receive retribution from God (the gods)even while explaining these actions in strictly human terms; while Herodotus has a notion of the capriciousness of the gods and the fates, the moral/theological retribution is more consistent within Chronicles.

 

12:00-13:30 (Pino, 1471 Crescent St.)

Women Scholars’ Lunch / Casse-croěte pour les femmes savants

 

13:30-17:45 (CL 215)

The Book of Chronicles and Early Second Temple Historiography (Session 2)

Chair / Président: Tyler F. Williams (The King’s University College)

 

13:30-14:00 Gary N. Knoppers (The Pennsylvania State University)

Yhwh will raise up for you a prophet like me”: Prophecy and Prophetic Succession in Chronicles

In my essay, I would like to comment on the prophetic phenomenon in Chronicles with a special view to the distribution of prophets throughout the course of the monarchy. My paper will argue the presentation of Chronicles has been profoundly influenced by the tradition reflected in Deut 18:15-22 dealing with the prophetic office. The influence is fourfold: 1) prophecy as a largely independent institution ordained by Yhwh; 2) what prophecy is; 3) what prophecy is not; and 4) a succession of prophets actualizing the promise that Yhwh would raise up prophets like Moses to follow him. To be sure, Chronicles neither directly quotes the officeholder legislation of Deuteronomy nor speaks directly of a prophetic succession. I shall argue, however, that the work assumes the fundamental aspects of the Deuteronomic presentation and presents Israelite history as repeatedly instantiating the fulfillment of the divine pledge. Beginning with a sketch of the prophetic office and prophetic succession in Deuteronomy, my essay will discuss Chronistic prophecy and its indebtedness to the  portrayal in Deuteronomy. Given the diversity of prophets and prophetic figures appearing in Chronicles, it will be important to pay some attention to the different titles given to prophetic figures and the distinction between regular prophets, individuals whose occupation it is to prophesy, and non-professional prophets, pro tem figures from other walks of life who are led to prophesy in a particular setting. Having distinguished between regular prophets and temporary prophets, I shall explore how the prophetic succession operates within different periods of the monarchy.

 

14:00-14:30 Keith Bodner (Atlantic Baptist University)

Capital Punishment: The Configuration of Ahaziah's Last Hours in 2 Chronicles 22

Even though his royal tenure lasts but a single year, the ill-fated career of Ahaziah receives considerable attention in both the Deuteronomistic History (2 Kings 8-9) and the Chronicler's narrative (2 Chr 22). Yet numerous commentators have observed a series of substantial variations in the portraits of Ahaziah in these two accounts, especially with respect to his royal execution at the hands of Jehu son of Nimshi. For instance, a century ago in their ICC volume, Curtis and Madsen remarked that Ahaziah's death in Chronicles is a "totally different representation" from the version recounted in 2 Kings 9. This position has been affirmed by a host of subsequent scholars, to the point that R. B. Dillard referred to the two versions of Ahaziah's demise as presenting "formidable difficulties," and posing "one of the most difficult historical problems in the OT." In this paper I compare the relevant texts of Kings and Chronicles and proffer a new position: rather than a historical problem, this text provides an ideal point of entry for appreciating the literary world of the Chronicler. While the biblical narratives do recognize the use of omens manipulated by specialist ephod-wearing priests for the purpose of predicting the outcome of an impending battle, Dtr seems to denigrate the use of divination and give to the prophet the function of predicting future events. This has to do, not only with warnings about the consequences of disobedience to the divine will, but also concerning the more long-term destiny of royal dynasties and the fate of the nations of Israel and Judah. This is reflected in the so-called “theology of the Dtr history,” as spelled out by von Rad, as well as in certain reactions to Dtr in later additions to the history (e.g. the David Saga). The paper will take up a number of examples to illustrate these features. What I hope will become clear are the great differences in the understanding of prophecy as prediction within biblical historiography.

 

14:30-15:00 Paul Evans (McMaster University)

To Besiege or Not to Besiege:  The Chronicler’s Presentation of the Invasion of Sennacherib

This paper will undertake a close reading of 2 Chronicles 32 to determine what events are narrated by the Chronicler and to examine his method in reworking 2 Kings 18-19. Contrary to his Vorlage, in 2 Chronicles 32 Sennacherib does not conquer Judah’s fortified cities (2 Chr 32:1), and no Assyrian army accompanies the Assyrian messengers (2 Chr 32:9). Furthermore, there is no siege of Jerusalem.  Though 2 Chr 32:10 appears to refer explicitly to a siege, there is some debate whether to translate “the siege” (e.g., Selman, Japhet) or “the fortress” (e.g., Williamson, Meyers) “of Jerusalem.” This study argues for the translation “siege of Jerusalem” but since the statement is only found in the mouth of the Assyrian emissary and contradicts the narrator’s direct statements, his statement is unreliable.  The Chronicler clearly downplays the Assyrian threat, however, in doing so he was following the lead of his Vorlage.  References in 2 Kgs 19:8-9 to Sennacherib’s abandonment of the fortified cities of Lachish and Libnah may have suggested to the Chronicler they were not conquered.  The “heavy force” of 2 Kgs 18:17 may have been understood by the Chronicler as a small military force (cf. 2 Kgs 6:14) accompanying the Assyrian messengers which subsequently left with them (2 Kgs 19:8).  Finally, the lack of a “siege of Jerusalem” followed the lead of his Vorlage which does not narrate such a siege.  What is more, the prophetic word of Isaiah (2 Kings 19:32) denied the possibility of such a siege making the choice to have Sennacherib ‘not besiege’ immutable.

 

15:00-15:15 Break

 

15:15-15:45 Mark Leuchter (Temple University Department of Religion)

 Implicit and Explicit Rhetoric in 2 Chronicles 35-36

As most commentators have noted, the closing chapters of Chronicles diverge significantly from the alleged source materia in the book of Kings, presenting historical events, characterizing individual personalities, and alluding to liturgical and legal traditions without parallel in the Hebrew Bible.  Though some scholars have concluded that this speaks to a diversity of oral and now-lost literary sources, the present study will suggest that the Chronicler has here deployed a careful rhetorical strategy regarding the multiplicity of authoritative but conflicting literary and ideological traditions he inherited.  The Chronicler engages in this enterprise at a critical moment in his narrative to make a point regarding the place of these religious traditions in his own socio-political climate.

 

15:45-16:15 Ehud Ben Zvi (University of Alberta)

Exile in Chronicles

This paper examines the concept of Exile in Chronicles.  It explores the ways in which Exile in Chronicles resembles and deviates from the manner it is construed in prophetic literature and other historiographical works that existed in Judah during the late Persian/early Hellenistic period. In particular, the paper draws attention to the different challenge that the calamity of 586 BCE represented within the ideology of the Book of Chronicles and to the impact that the concept of Exile reflected and evoked by Chronicles had on reconfigurations of memories of the past and to some extent, hopes for the future within the relevant community of literati.

 

16:15-16:45 Sonya Kostamo (University of Alberta)

Historiography in Lament: A Case Study of Isaiah 63:7-64:11[12]

The composition of Isaiah 56-66, or so-called “Trito-Isaiah,” may be dated to the late-Persian/Early Hellenistic Period making this portion of the book of Isaiah relevant to the study of Chronicles.  While Isaiah 56-66 lacks any explicit mention of historical events, the communal lament in Isa 63:7-64:11[12] may offer insight into another post-exilic interpretation of Israel’s past. This paper will examine the perspectives on the past found in Isa 63:7-64:11[12] with special attention given to figures elevated in the lament, namely Moses and Abraham.  Finally, the paper will briefly compare the results of the analysis with references to the same figures in Chronicles to see if there is any overlap in the historiographical discourse evidenced in these two texts.

 

16:45-17:15 James Bowick (McMaster Divinity College)

Hearing Darius in Ezra: A Bakhtinian Analysis of the Voice of Darius in Ezra 6.

There is no doubt that Ezra-Nehemiah is basically a pro-Persian book, and that Cyrus and Darius are shown playing very positive roles. The letter of Darius in Ezra 6, echoing the early edict of Cyrus, is pivotal in bringing completion to the rebuilding of the temple after the exile. This study will examine how this letter functions within the book using the Bakhtinian concepts of chronotope and double voicing.  Ezra makes excellent use of the intersection between narrative and chronological time at the nexus of Ezra 5-6 to nuance the character of Darius that arises from a straight reading of the chapter. Arrangement of the materials in a manner that is at odds with the chronology creates a dialogue that is trans-generational.  This, combined with careful double voicing of the letter itself, nuances our hearing of the letter.  While Darius is given special status among the Persian kings, the writer also takes care to limit his authority and role.  First, Darius’ graces to the Yehudites are not borne of his own intention, but are subservient to the will of Cyrus. Further, the writer takes great pains constantly to trace the impetus to rebuild, and to complete the temple not back to Darius, but to Yahweh himself, mediated not directly through the king, but through prophetic agents.  In the end, it is not Darius who, as king, initiates and rebuilds the temple, nor is it Cyrus.  The true king of Israel is Yahweh.

 

17:15-17:45 Christine Mitchell (St. Andrew’s College)

Reflections on the Book of Chronicles and Early Second Temple Historiography

 

13:30-16:15 (CL 217)

Lament

Chair / Président: Andrew Wilson (Mount Allison University)

 

13:30-14:00 Andrew Wilson (Mount Allison University)

Famous Last Words: The Intersections of Forgiveness and Lament atop Golgotha.

Is forgiveness integral to lamentation?  This paper follows the tradition of the seven last words of Christ on the cross, with attention given more specifically those that evoke lament (references to Psalm 22 and Psalm 69) and those that invoke forgiveness  (namely, Luke’s account).  Of particular importance will be Derrida’s development of the notion of forgiveness, a concept which forms part of his so-called “ethical turn.”  Is lament an attempt to voice the unforgiveable?  Does forgiveness gesture towards the same point of impasse that lament marks?  Ultimately, this paper raises theological questions relating to incarnation, the im/possibility of divine-human encounter and the locations spanned by the inter-textual cross.

 

14:00-14:30 Fiona C. Black (Mount Allison University)

When Babylon is Not Babylon: Psalm 137 and the Caribbean Hermeneutical Space
This paper considers the multi-positionality of lament discourse via a reading of Psalm 137, "By the Rivers of Babylon." The psalm's play with ideas of place and space suggests a useful heuristic for thinking about the ways that lamentation intersects with different, often conflicting, interests, particularly those of insiders (exiled) and outsiders (enemies). Discussion will be framed against Caribbean hermeneutics and the experiences of present-day insiders and outsiders, that is, exiles and immigrants. The psalm serves here both to explore the contours of the Caribbean immigrant experience and some of the benefits and failings of Caribbean hermeneutics.

 

14:30-14:45 Break

 

14:45-15:15 Robert Culley (McGill University)

The Language of the Complaints of the Individual

The term “language” covers much ground but does indicate my general approach and starting point.  The concern of this paper lies in the existence of recurrent language in the complaints, or, as I call it, “traditional” language. This language creates a certain sense of familiarity, stability, and consistency, yet the poems display a remarkable range of variation and do not simply follow a standard pattern. In addition, the complaints present a number of rapid shifts, jarring transitions, and apparent contradictions. The complexity produced will be explored briefly using some texts like Psalms 35, 71, and 86.

 

 

15:15-15:45 Erin Runions (Pomona College)

Torture by the Book: Psalm 137 after Abu Ghraib

This paper explores the work of lament in the context of war. It starts from the little remarked report that the song Rivers of Babylon, by Boney M, was repeated at high volumes at Abu Ghraib in the attempt to break prisoners. Between WW II and the events of Abu Ghraib, scholars have often read this psalm in the context of the Holocaust, to try to understand the violent ending of Psalm 137 as an understandable response to acute oppression. The implications of that interpretation and the violence that it might inadvertently have facilitated in the Iraq war are considered, before looking at how the language of the Psalm might contribute to, and also resist, such violence.  

 

15:45-16:15 Bill Morrow (Queen’s University)

Lament and Human Rights: The Crisis of Agency

In the concluding chapter of my book, Protest Against God (Sheffield Phoenix, 2006), I suggested an analogy between the discourses of biblical lament and human rights. This association rested on the observation that, as with the arguing with God tradition, contemporary human rights thinking is based on concepts of entitlement, grievance, and trial. In this paper, I intend to reframe these insights by integrating them with contemporary discussions about agency, particularly in post-colonial studies. Reference will be made to Truth and Reconciliation Canada’s approach to survivors’ of the Indian residential school system as a case in point.

 

Monday May 31, 2010

8:30-11:45 (CL 215)

Panel on Children in Early Judaism and Christianity

Chair / Président: Margaret Y. MacDonald (St. Francis Xavier University)

Each panelist will speak approximately 15 minutes, followed by a full discussion.  There will be a break 10:15-10:30.

 

Cecilia Wassen (Uppsala University)

Children in the Dead Sea Scrolls

The Qumran movement was a highly stratified and exclusive sect. One branch appears to have been celibate, whereas another perhaps larger one consisted of families. What was the status of children in this sect? To what extent did they participate in communal activities? When and how did the transition from child to adult take place? These are the main questions I will address in my paper. Although the information on children in the sectarian texts is limited, I will examine a few key passages that provide some clues concerning these topics. To begin with, the enigmatic passage 1QSa I 4-9 provides instruction on different stages in life, including the education of children. The Damascus Document (CD XIII 18-19/4Q266 9 iii 6-9) mentions the instruction of children by the Examiner. Furthermore, the exclusion of children from the meetings of the congregation in D (4Q266 8 i 6–9) and from the war camp in the War Scroll (1QM VII 3–6) are informative with regards to the status of children in the community. Finally, I will discuss the regulations in D (CD XV 5-15) concerning the entrance rituals for the young people from within the movement whereby they became full members.

 

Adele Reinhartz (University of Ottawa)

Children and Childhood in the works of Josephus

This paper will survey Josephus’s comments on children and childhood.  While these topics are not central to his own concerns, Josephus does not hesitate to express his views on a range of issues such as proper relationships between parents and children and “household management.” Josephus’s remarks on these and other aspects of family life will be discussed in the context of Josephus’s own apologetic interests in treatises such as Against Apion and in comparison with Roman law, for example, on the role of the paterfamilias. 

 

Mary Rose D’Angelo (Notre Dame)

Children, Sexuality, and Slavery

The views of ancient Jewish and early Christian authors on sexual practices address a context in which the status of children and the realities of slavery play a major role. This presentation will seek to contextualize fears of same-sex context and of women’s sexuality in the treatment of children in a society in which Jews and Christians experienced or were threatened by slavery and its power over the body.

 

Janet Tulloch (Carleton University)

Children in religious ritual - the visual/material evidence

In Roman and Early Christian Art children appear on diverse ritual objects such as votives, funerary monuments, and goods found in graves. They also appear in a variety of ritual scenes, from playing musical instruments while the emperor sacrifices to participating in familial cult practices. This paper will present visual examples of three types of scenes from the first and early second century which show children participating in or performing ritual: sacrifice, meals, and ritual procession. In presenting this material, I discuss three possible functions of the imagery: 1. Religious identity formation of children; 2. Transmission of correct ritual practice to the next generation; and 3. Visual communication of ‘inclusiveness’ to viewers.

 

Margaret Y. MacDonald (St. Francis Xavier University)

Reading the New Testament Household Codes with a focus on Children

In scholarship on the New Testament household codes by far the greatest attention has been paid to marriage and the slave-master relationship.  Children and their relationship with parents have been virtually neglected.  But new studies on the lives of children in the Roman world call for a reassessment of the implications of this ethical discourse.  Moreover, methodological insights emerging from the interdisciplinary field of Childhood Studies suggest analytical approaches that can lead to a new appreciation of the significance of this material.  A focus on children highlights the need to read the exhortations concerning the three pairs of relationships as deeply interconnected, rather than as isolated teachings directed to specific household groups.

 

Carolyn Osiek (Brite Divinity School, Retired)

The Education of Girls in Christian Ascetic Traditions

There is a surprising silence about any kind of education of children by Christian families until quite late, and information about the education of girls is even scarcer. Margaret MacDonald and I in A Woman’s Place: House Churches in Earliest Christianity tried to mine whatever information would be forthcoming. Here I will follow some of the elusive strands from ascetic writers of the third and fourth centuries that suggest the beginnings of a full educational program for girls that would certainly have applied only in selective situations, but that may have its origins much earlier.

 

11:45 -12:30 (CL 215)

Discussion for new CSBS Seminar

Chair / Président: Steven Muir (Concordia University College of Alberta)

CSBS has had several seminars on themes specific enough to generate focused discussion, yet broad enough to attract a variety of scholars and topics.  Recent seminars were Religious Rivalries, and Travel and Religion in the Ancient World.  At this meeting we will consider possible topics and who would help direct this venture. 

 

9 :30-11:45 (CL 217)

Patterns in Biblical Scholarship/Methods of Interpretation

Chair / Président: TBA

 

9:00-9:30 Gerbern S. Oegema (McGill University)

The Study of Early Judaism in Canada

This paper deals with the study of early Judaism in Canada, which began at McMaster University. It will both look at the origin of the crucial group of scholars gathered there for the study of early Judaism from the mid-1960s onward, and then how the McMaster doctorate program influenced a large number of Canadian scholars from coast to coast. As there wasn’t anything remotely comparable elsewhere in Canada in the 60s and 70s, there were individual scholars interested in early Judaism. The major SSHRC project on Normative Self-Definition in Early Christianity and Judaism developed at McMaster attracted many leading scholars for stays of various lengths. A crucial feature of the McMaster program in its early years was its creation of a single, unified area called 'Judaism and early Christianity.' Many of those conditions changed as the core faculty moved away and they were replaced by a new group with somewhat different perspectives, and the department reshaped itself accordingly. But the McMaster approach had established itself within the CSBS, and a number of special seminars emerged over the years, leading to significant publications. The second half of the paper will specifically deal with some of these publications of Canada based scholars since the 1960s and then ask whether there are any common themes, objectives and perspectives, that would make the study of Early Judaism in Canada different form that in other countries, and thus could be called the “Canadian approach”.

 

9:30-10:00 Christiana de Groot (Calvin College)

Grace Aquilar: an advocate for Jewish Women

Grace Aquilar’s interpretation of Pentateuchal laws in her three volume work, The Women of Israel (1845), is unique in nineteenth-century England. She exegeted laws that concern wives, daughters, mothers and maid servants so that Jewish women would better understand and embrace their heritage. She wrote explicitly as a member of the Jewish minority living in a Christian nation which discriminated against Jews, and through her interpretive work sought to empower Jewish women. In addition, through her biblical studies she strove for reform within her own patriarchal community, advocating for religious education for Jewish girls.   

 

10:00-10:30  Marion Ann Taylor (Wycliffe College, University of Toronto)

Wrestling with the Enigmas of Jael (Judges 4:17-23, 5:24-31)

The story of Jael's murder of Sisera has provoked great controversy throughout history. This paper will examine nineteenth-century interpretations of Jael, focusing especially on the writings of women who left behind the traditional figural readings of Jael as a type of the Church and even the Virgin Mary who ushered in redemption triumphing over sin and the devil. Instead, using a literal-historical approach to the text, they wrestled with the social, cultural and moral issues arising out of Jael's actions toward Sisera and her subsequent blessing by Deborah. The authors considered include Sarah Trimmer, Elizabeth Whately, Eliza Smith, Clara Balfour and Harriet Beecher Stowe.

 

10:30-10:45 Break

 

10:45-11:15 Heidi Epstein (St. Thomas More College)

SOS--The Sequel: The Musical Plight of a Shtetl-Bound Shulammite in Waszinski’s Dybbuk

S. Ansky’s play The Dybbuk, and Waszinski’s film adaptation thereof have been described as Jewish versions of Romeo and Juliet, Wuthering Heights, or Tristan and Isolde.  Given that a musical rendition of the Song of Songs figures prominently in both play and film, why does Khonen and Leah’s unconsummated, albeit lethal, game of lovers’ hide-and-seek not prompt comparisons with the Song’s tale of love?  Readers’ utopic pigeonholing of the biblical love ‘story’ may explain this myopia.  But Fiona Black’s positing of grotesque bodies in the Song (The Artifice of Love, 2008) and their evocation of love’s darker dynamics (eg. “death of the self ... the quest for possession, envy, perhaps even repulsion.” [p. 236]) provides a heuristic that allows 1) a new, intertextual reading of the film’s “Hasidic grotesque” elements (cf. J. Hoberman, Bridge of Light, 1991), especially the demonic possession of Leah by Khonen; 2) the construction of untapped structural homologies between the film and the biblical text; 3) a resistant reading of the film’s romantically lyrical Shir hashirim as disintegrative lamentation rather than a “burning desire for unification” (cf. Konigsberg).

 

11:15-11:45 Nathan Dueck (University of Calgary)

“A diet of paradox”: The Psalmist’s Role in Leonard Cohen’s Beautiful Losers

In many psalms, King David strives to make beauty of his failures before God. In Beautiful Losers, Leonard Cohen attempts to make his losers appear beautiful through several allusions to King David. The “psalmist” – Cohen’s name for David – is a role that several characters try to play at different times in the novel. For example: an unnamed historian pleads for a maiden to warm his bed, just as David had Abishag the Shunammite (1 Kings 1.2); and, a political radical, named F., writes songs about the uprising to come, just as David sang to Saul about the kingdom to come (Psalm 22.29). Cohen defies his readers to connect these canonical references just below the level of narrative, as evidence, perhaps, of a Cohen who has pored over the Law of Moses. This paper will look into the ironic inversion of two biblical topoi in Beautiful Losers: Cohen praises the spiritual transcendence of suffering instead of salvation, and worships disconnection rather than unity between believers.

 

9:00-11:15 (CL 221)

New Testament II

Chair / Président: Kimberly Stratton (Carleton University)

 

9:00-9:30 Esther Kobel (University of Basel, Switzerland)

Identity Formation in Johannine Meal Accounts 

The Johannine Jesus offers earthly as well as heavenly food and drink to a diverse range of people. Analysis of the receivers and addressees of earthly and metaphorical nourishment throughout the Gospel’s meal scenes reveals the meal scenes as crucial settings. This paper traces the highly dynamic development of the group of people gathering for meals within the overall narrative of the Fourth Gospel. It will discuss how the meal scenes and attached discourses about food and drink function in the formation of identity of those gathering for meals on the Gospel’s narrative level.

9:30-10:00 Steven Richard Scott (University of Ottawa)

Probability and Chiastic Analysis

The study of proposed larger chiastic structures faces the criticism that the proposed chiasm could be due either to chance and/or the imagination of the scholar proposing the chiasm. This paper will look at how probability can solve this problem. First probability theory will be discussed, and then how it could be applied to chiastic studies. A large section of the Gospel of Mark has been divided into its smaller and larger natural units, and then the parallels between any one unit and all the other units is enumerated. The parallelism in possible chiastic patterns in this section of Mark is then analyzed  using probability theory.

 

10:00-10:15 Break

 

10:15-10:45 Stephen Ney (University of British Columbia)

Colonial Annunciation: Luke 1:35 Arrives in Africa

This paper takes the angel’s annunciatory words to Mary in Luke 1:35 – “that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the son of God” – as a cross-section of the history of the Bible’s movement across linguistic, colonial, and religious boundaries. After a preliminary survey of this short text’s transmission from Luke’s Greek to Augustine’s Latin (in his Enchiridion) to King James’s English, this paper focuses on the obstacles encountered and the cultural work performed when in 1844 Samuel Ajayi Crowther chose this passage, in his own translation, for the first sermon and one of the first written phrases in his mother tongue, Yoruba. Drawing on my own work on African literary responses to the Victorian missionary movement, I demonstrate how the translator’s perception of his or her antagonist religions (in Crowther’s case, Islam and African animism) colours the translation.

 

10:45-11:15 Keir Hammer (Edmonton)

The Silent Narrator: Examining the Narrative Voice of 1 Peter

Discussions regarding the authorship of 1 Peter revolve primarily around the use of the apostle Peter’s name in the opening of this letter.  To date, no study has focussed on the “narrative” voice that shaped this first-century document.  Interestingly, especially in comparison with the letters of Paul, this letter offers very little of the authorial, “Petrine” voice, and presents, instead, a voice that is unique among the NT epistles.  This paper will move beyond the questions of authorship in order to explore the distinctive details of 1 Peter’s narrative voice.

 

19:30-21:00 (MB 1-210)

CTS/CSSR Joint Lecture (hosted by CTS)

Justo L. González

Beyond Christendom: New Maps

The nineteenth and twentieth centuries have brought momentous changes to the map of Christianity, so that it is no longer possible to speak of Christendom in either geographical or theological terms. How is not only the present reality, but also on the way we look at the entire history of Christianity, reflected in the interpretation of Christianity's canonical texts? What does the incarnation of Christianity in a wide variety of often conflicting contexts imply for its unity?

Bio: Dr. Justo L. González, a native of Cuba, is a retired professor of historical theology. After completing his PhD in historical theology at Yale University in 1961, he taught at the Evangelical Seminary of Puerto Rico for eight years, followed by eight years on the faculty of Candler School of Theology. For the last thirty years he has focused on developing programs for the theological education of Hispanics, resulting in the founding of the Asociación par la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH), the Hispanic Summer Program (HSP), and the Hispanic Theological Initiative (HTI). Jointly, these programs seek to strengthen Latino/a leadership at all levels of education and training. An ordained United Methodist minister, he has also published over one hundred books, mostly in the field of history, but also on various books of Scripture and on theology. His books have been translated into eight languages. The best known are The Story of Christianity (2 vols.) and A History of Christian Thought (3 vols.). His next forthcoming book in English is a Commentary on Luke, for the series Belief: A Theological Commentary on the Bible to be published by Westminster Press in the summer of 2010. Besides his PhD degree from Yale, he has received four honorary doctorates.

 

Joint CSBS/CSSR/CTS/CSPS reception (hosted by CTS)

21:00-23:00 (MB 1-210)