Sam Harrelson



Sam Harrelson

New Reading of the Mesha Stele

Potentially huge (I appreciate Thomas Römer‘s scholarship a great deal):

A name in Line 31 of the stele, previously thought to read ‘House of David’, could instead read ‘Balak’, a king of Moab mentioned in the biblical  of Balaam (Numbers 22-24), say archaeologist Prof. Israel Finkelstein and historians and biblical scholars Prof. Nadav Na’aman and Prof. Thomas Römer, in an article published in Tel Aviv: The Journal of the Institute of Archaeology of Tel Aviv University.

New reading of Mesha Stele could have far-reaching consequences for biblical history – Phys.org




Stanford to cut Stanford Univ. Press

Just wow.

The Stanford press actually brings in about $5 million a year in book sales, a sum that is impressive compared to sales of many scholarly publishers. But it has also depended on support from the university, which in recent years has provided $1.7 million annually.

Provost Persis Drell told the Faculty Senate Thursday that the university was ending that funding. She cited a tight budget ahead, due to a smaller than anticipated payout coming from the endowment. (The endowment is worth more than $26 billion and is the fourth largest in American higher education.)

Stanford publishes about 130 books a year. It is particularly well-known in the fields of Middle Eastern studies, Jewish studies, business, literature and philosophy. The press has also been capable of undertaking long-term scholarly efforts, such as a 20-year project to translate the Zohar, the key work in understanding the Jewish thought of the Kabbalah.

Source: Stanford moves to stop providing funds to its university press




Capitalism is killing the small church

If small church becomes extinct in the next generation, it will not be because preachers failed to promote work-life balance. It will not be because younger Christians lack faith. It will be because capitalism killed it.

Source: Melissa Florer-Bixler: Capitalism is killing the small church | Faith and Leadership




Sunday April 28, 2019

We really do forget that Easter isn’t just a day but actually a season in the liturgical Christian calendar. It would be like assigning all of Lent to Ash Wednesday. There’s a reason Easter is the longest season in the church calendar… practice resurrection.




Think You’re Discreet Online?

Go read Mad Farmer Liberation Front:

But they are wrong. Because of technological advances and the sheer amount of data now available about billions of other people, discretion no longer suffices to protect your privacy. Computer algorithms and network analyses can now infer, with a sufficiently high degree of accuracy, a wide range of things about you that you may have never disclosed, including your moods, your political beliefs, your sexual orientation and your health.

Source: Opinion | Think You’re Discreet Online? Think Again – The New York Times




Blue Ball in the Sky

I don’t remember when or why but about 2 years ago we threw this sticky blue ball onto the ceiling of our dining room. It’s been there ever since fighting a constant battle with gravity and friction thanks to the miracle of modern polymers. It’s also become part of our family and dinner routine. It’s going to be a sad day when it falls.