Recent ETS and SBL Presentations

Several days ago I attended the annual meetings of the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) and Society of Biblical Literature (SBL), held this year in Denver. For those who are unfamiliar with these conferences, they (along with a few others that meet at the same time, such as AAR and IBR) are essentially the Comic-Con of the biblical studies world, only without the costumes. I don’t know the numbers for this year, but in years past the ETS meeting has had ~3,000 attendees and SBL ~10,000.

When I was a postgraduate student, these two conferences were primarily a means of networking, which brought with it the scholarly insecurity related to finding a job. But this year, now that I’m happily employed at RTS, the conferences were much more about catching up with old friends and learning a few things along the way (the same was true last year, but this year proved to be even more personally enriching).

Amid various events, lunches, dinners, and long conversations with old pals, I also made three presentations (2 at ETS, 1 at SBL), each of which—consistent with a theme of my research over the past several years—related to the Septuagint, or Greek Old Testament. The run-down of each is below, for those who are interested.

Continue reading Recent ETS and SBL Presentations

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Q&A with Hendrickson on our Septuagint book

Will and I discuss further details about our Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition in this interview over at the Hendrickson blog.

Hendrickson Publishers Blog

As the publication date for the Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition and the academic shows approach, we’re excited to reveal to you this exclusive Q&A with the editors: Will Ross and Greg Lanier. The pair has exciting background information on the LXX to share, along with helpful advice for those of us who are intimidated by the idea of reading the Old Testament in Greek. Enjoy!

1. What made you decide to create Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition?

Greg: We were both early in our PhD work and had benefited from other similar “reader’s editions” (for the Hebrew Bible and Greek NT), which helped us develop our abilities in the languages and our familiarity with the Scriptures. After SBL in 2014, we exchanged emails that amounted to, “Why hasn’t anyone done this for the Septuagint? Why not us?” We reached out to a few people to start the process, and we…

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Early Feedback on the LXX Reader’s Edition

Many thanks to the scholars who have provided early comments on the LXXRE

Septuaginta: A Reader's Edition

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As early-career scholars, we have been influenced and inspired by a variety of senior scholars whose work has shaped ours in many ways. We were excited to reach out to many of them with a request to look at a sample of Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition and share their thoughts. The volume itself will ship with the endorsements from Dr. Jobes and Dr. Aitken. But we’ve received several others in the meantime, which we’ve provided below. The full list can be found on the Endorsements page.

Many thanks to you all for your kind words!

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Looking at Textual Variation in the Main “Trunk” of the NT Manuscript Tradition

cover.jpgIn the recent issue of New Testament Studies, I have an article that presents the results of a long project studying the textual variants in sixteen key manuscripts for Acts and the Catholic Epistles:

Quantifying New Testament Textual Variants: Key Witnesses in Acts and the Catholic Letters,” NTS 64/4 (2018): 551–572.

Continue reading Looking at Textual Variation in the Main “Trunk” of the NT Manuscript Tradition

Podcast on the Importance of the OT

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I recently sat down with Clay Kraby, a pastor in North Dakota, to do a podcast for his very helpful blog, Reasonable Theology. We covered a range of topics related to the importance of the OT for Christians today. It’s one of my favorite things to discuss; in fact, I joke in my Gospels and Pauline Epistles classes that they’re basically OT classes, given how important the OT is to the thinking and theology of the NT writers.

You can find out more and listen to the podcast here: https://reasonabletheology.org/why-christians-still-need-the-old-testament/

Clay is an RTS student and an all-around sharp guy. Many thanks to him for the opportunity.

For Our Septuagint Project, How Did We Handle the So-Called “Double Texts”?

In this post, we elaborate on how we handled the few books of the Greek OT (and apocrypha) that apparently circulated in two somewhat distinct textual forms.

Septuaginta: A Reader's Edition

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As is well known in the field of Septuagint studies, certain books developed over time into distinct textual forms. That is, in some cases there are what look like two different Greek versions of the same book in the Septuagint corpus. In such cases, the manuscript evidence preserves two textual traditions that are substantially different enough that Rahlfs decided to differentiate them in his edition of the Septuagint.* Since we decided to use Rahlfs-Hanhart as a base text, when it came to producing the Reader’s Edition we had to ask ourselves how we would handle these “double texts,” as they are often called.

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OT Metaphors and Luke’s Christology: Published Thesis

In a couple weeks the published form of my PhD dissertation will be released by T&T Clark as part of the Library of New Testament Studies series.

Though I finished the dissertation version almost two years ago, it has taken a while (longer than I expected) to navigate the publication process. I’m excited to note that the release date is just a couple weeks away.

Continue reading OT Metaphors and Luke’s Christology: Published Thesis

A Note on How We Devised the Vocab Aids for our Septuagint Reader’s Edition

Will Ross on how we went about constructing the vocabulary apparatus for our LXX Reader’s Edition. Including a fancy chart that I no longer know how to explain even though I did it, as well as a short sample from Exodus.

Septuaginta: A Reader's Edition

Probably the most obvious question to ask about a reader’s edition is “What vocabulary do you provide?” After all, that is the basic function of this kind of book—to supply the reader with guidance on the form and meaning of difficult vocabulary.

So obviously that’s what we did.

But how did we define “difficult vocabulary” for Septuaginta? It was actually a pretty tricky issue to address. Let me explain.

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On the Byzantine Tradition, Minuscules, and Textual Criticism in the Past Few Decades

Last year I began work on an extended research project involving the ‘later’ manuscripts of the Greek New Testament. This all started with an invitation from Peter Gurry and Elijah Hixson (buddies of mine from England) to contribute to their upcoming volume, Myths and Mistakes: Correcting Common Misconceptions about the Text of the New Testament (IVP Academic).

The firstfruits of this project took the form of a presentation I made at ETS this past November. Today the second installment of some of the output of this project was published in Currents in Biblical Research (Vol 16/3, pp. 263–308).

Continue reading On the Byzantine Tradition, Minuscules, and Textual Criticism in the Past Few Decades

Why Did We Choose Rahlfs-Hanhart as the Basis for this Reader’s Edition?

The latest from our Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition blog, where we explain how we went about choosing the textual basis for our edition.

Septuaginta: A Reader's Edition

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One of the first decisions we faced in scoping out this project was this: which Greek text should we use?

There were essentially four options on the table:

  1. H. B. Swete’s ‘smaller’ Cambridge edition from the late 1800s–early 1900s
  2. Brooke/McLean/Thackeray’s ‘larger’ Cambridge critical edition
  3. The semi-critical Septuaginta edited by Alfred Rahlfs and revised by Robert Hanhart (a.k.a. Rahlfs-Hanhart)
  4. The Göttingen critical edition

The first option is in the public domain and available electronically (e.g., here), which was a plus, but all agree it has been supplanted by others. The second option is also publically available (e.g., here) but unfortunately the original project was never completed.

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Connecting Biblical Scholarship to the Church