Fr Stephen Smuts

Posts Tagged ‘New Testament

How Many of Your Favorite New Testament Books Were Popular Among the Early Christians?

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Jimmy Akin:BodmerPapyrus

Obviously, taken as a whole, the books of the New Testament were quite popular. They were Scripture, after all!

But how popular were they individually?

People today have favorite books in the Bible–ones they go to all the time, and ones they only rarely look at.

This is a phenomenon that affects both the books of the Old and the New Testament, and it’s possible to get a sense of how popular particular books were in particular time periods.

One way of doing that–before the Bible was bound as a single volume–is by seeing how many copies there are of individual books…

Continue here.


Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

January 17, 2014 at 16:03

Humor in the New Testament

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On the Oxford University Press’ blog:

For many people, religion is serious business which rules out any positive connection between belief and humor. For them, humor connected to religion is humor directed, in a negative and derisive manner, against religion. If this is true for religion in general, then the disconnect between the Bible and humor in particular would be especially well defined. However, scholarship in this field has grown in recent years and has attempted to dispel the notion that humor is inappropriate in, and absent from, Scripture…

Find out more here.



Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

June 3, 2013 at 15:48

New Testament: Sacrifice or Execution

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Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

October 9, 2012 at 05:42

An Advent Calendar of NT Greek

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This is well done – a few days in, but you’ll catch up.

Some important vocab. for reading the birth narratives of Matthew and Luke (this version does not include chocolates): A NT Greek Advent.



Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

December 3, 2011 at 19:15

Keep Chi in Xmas!

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HTNear Emmaus


Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

November 26, 2011 at 22:27

Posted in Church

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The Jewish Annotated New Testament

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Coming this month:

Published by Oxford University Press, here is the product description:

Although major New Testament figures–Jesus and Paul, Peter and James, Jesus’ mother Mary and Mary Magdalene–were Jews, living in a culture steeped in Jewish history, beliefs, and practices, there has never been an edition of the New Testament that addresses its Jewish background and the culture from which it grew–until now. In The Jewish Annotated New Testament, eminent experts under the general editorship of Amy-Jill Levine and Marc Z. Brettler put these writings back into the context of their original authors and audiences.  And they explain how these writings have affected the relations of Jews and Christians over the past two thousand years.

An international team of scholars introduces and annotates the Gospels, Acts, Letters, and Revelation from Jewish perspectives, in the New Revised Standard Version translation.  They show how Jewish practices and writings, particularly the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, influenced the New Testament writers. From this perspective, readers gain new insight into the New Testament’s meaning and significance. In addition, thirty essays on historical and religious topics–Divine Beings, Jesus in Jewish thought, Parables and Midrash, Mysticism, Jewish Family Life, Messianic Movements, Dead Sea Scrolls, questions of the New Testament and anti-Judaism, and others–bring the Jewish context of the New Testament to the fore, enabling all readers to see these writings both in their original contexts and in the history of interpretation. For readers unfamiliar with Christian language and customs, there are explanations of such matters as the Eucharist, the significance of baptism, and “original sin.”

For non-Jewish readers interested in the Jewish roots of Christianity and for Jewish readers who want a New Testament that neither proselytizes for Christianity nor denigrates Judaism, The Jewish Annotated New Testament is an essential volume that places these writings in a context that will enlighten students, professionals, and general readers.

And a review:

‘This exciting collection by leading Jewish scholars not only annotates the New Testament but also brings out its themes, context, and interpretation over the centuries. Essential for libraries of scholars in Christian-Jewish studies, academic institutions offering degrees in theology, and dialogue groups at all levels.”–Dr. Eugene J. Fisher, Distinguished Professor of Catholic-Jewish Studies, Saint Leo University; Former Associate Director, Secretariat for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

I prefer whole Study Bibles (OT and NT). Perhaps that will follow?


Written by Fr Stephen Smuts

October 1, 2011 at 08:43


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