And Some Helped Their Wish Come True

Besserman writes: “For what Samuel Johnson said of readers of Paradise Lost — ‘none ever have wished it longer than it is’ — probably holds true for most readers of the Hebrew Book of Job. The Septuagint is only five-sixths the length of its exemplar, a disparity that was already noted by Origen in the…

NSA Grads and Law Schools

Roy Atwood, dean of New St. Andrews College, reports that an NSA graduate has recently been accepted and decided to enroll in the Duke University law school. He writes: I just received an email from one of our many gifted New Saint Andrews graduates who has been teaching at an ACCS school “back East” for…

Contrary to Nature

John Starke quotes from a letter Bonhoeffer wrote his brother in a new biography: “If it is I who determine where God is to be found, then I shall always find a God who corresponds to me in some way, who is obliging, who is connected with my own nature. But if God determines where…

Jesus, Paul, and the People of God

I just listened to Kevin Vanhoozer’s talk from the recent Wheaton conference, a dialog with N.T. Wright, and I recommend it to you. If you have the slightest interest in N.T. Wright and the conversation/controversy surrounding his reformulation of the doctrine of justification and how that should be received and evaluated by those of us…

William Blake’s Job

Davis points out that one of great insights of William Blake found in his famous Illustrations of the Book of Job is the resemblance between God and Job. Blake underlines this point in Illustration Number XVII pictured here. Above the picture runs the quotation from 1 Jn. 3:2: “We know that when He shall appear…

Extreme Obscurity

“Such a diversity of opinions has prevailed in the learned world concerning the nature and design of the Poem of Job, that the only point in which commentators seem to agree, is the extreme obscurity of the subject.” Bishop Lowth Cited in The Legend of Job in the Middle Ages by Lawrence Besserman

Job’s Resemblance of God

Ellen Davis closes her essay “Job and Jacob” noting that Job’s maturation over the course of the book specifically has to do with an understanding of the concept of “blameless” as “capacity for obsession with the blessing of God.” This idea of “obsession” is itself a kind of insatiable hunger. But this hunger in turn…

Blamelessness: Capacity for Obsession

Ellen Davis has a great essay in a collection entitled The Whirlwind, ed. by Stephen Cook, et al. She recognizes the textual parallels in the characters of Job and Jacob and specifically notices the description of both men as tam or “blameless”. Davis suggests, following the Targum’s rendering of Gen. 25:27 that this “integrity” is…

Baptismal Meditation: Becoming Children Again

“Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to…

Grabbers and Givers

James says that quarrels and fights come from our lusts, our covetousness, our envy. But this table is a standing witness and invitation to another way of life, another way of speaking to one another, another way of being family and being in community. And the fundamental difference between earthly wisdom and heavenly wisdom is…