Was Mary the Name of Jesus’ Mother? A Source-Critical Perspective

I previously mentioned the publication at the Bible and Interpretation site of my essay titled “Was Mary the Name of Jesus’ Mother: A Source Critical Perspective.” I am now making it available here and through a link on my Selected Writings page. Here is the opening paragraph. Click on the link to read the rest of the article.

If we had no reliable written sources mentioning the name of Jesus’ mother, a good guess would be Mary. Statistically, it was one of the most popular, if not the most popular, name for Jewish women in the first century. In the Christian scriptures, more women have the name Mary than any other name. The question I wish to raise here is whether we have any reliable written evidence that Mary was the name of Jesus’ mother. Click here to read the rest

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Was Mary the Name of Jesus’ Mother? A Source-Critical Perspective

My essay, Was Mary the Name of Jesus’ Mother? A Source-Critical Perspective has just been published on the Bible and Interpretation Web Site. The thrust of the article is that while statistically it is likely that Mary was the name of Jesus’ mother, there is no reliable textual evidence in the New Testament that Mary was the name of Jesus’ mother. The article examines the textual evidence as it relates to this issue. Check it out and tell me what you think.

Who is Nimrod? An Answer

Genesis 10 contains a list of Noh’s descendants through his three sons, Ham, Japheth, and Shem. The roster is divided into three branches, one for each son and lists a series of descendants from each son. Each branch is associated with different geographic territories. According to Genesis 10:32, “These are the families of Noah’s sons, according to their genealogies, in their nations; and from these the nations spread abroad on the earth after the flood.”

A number of the names closely align with the names of ancient nations in the Near East but many, if not most, are obscure and unknown from the historical records. One particularly glaring problem scholars have with the list is that it omits the various Mesopotamian empires that flourished in the first two millennia B.C.E.

There are many other problems with the list, including such issues as when it was composed and what it can tell us about geo-politics at the time of its publication. Here I want to focus on one particular issue. Who does Nimrod represent? The question puzzles biblical scholars and near eastern archaeologists and some academic contortions have been used to resolve the matter. I have a more sensible solution.

Fine-Tuning Radiocarbon Dating Will Rewrite History!

“A single Northern Hemisphere calibration curve has formed the basis of radiocarbon dating in Europe and the Mediterranean for five decades, setting the time frame for prehistory,” Manning and co-authors write. “However, as measurement precision increases, there is mounting evidence for some small but substantive regional (partly growing season) offsets in the same-year radiocarbon levels.”

A recent study suggests that the current basis for radiocarbon dating in the Middle East may be relying on an erroneous calibration based on sources outside of the Middle East. This site also reports on the study and includes a video on radiocarbon dating.

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