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Archive for December, 2008

History of the Daily Devotional Reading of the Bible

28th December 2008

I am curious if anyone in the blogosphere is familiar with when the notion of daily devotional reading of the Bible for average everyday Christians became popular? When did this become the cornerstone of individual piety and spirituality?

It was obviously after the Reformation and the appearance of Bible translations in the vernacular (quite a bit after, I would think), but more importantly it would have to do with socio-economic factors and literacy rates.

I am preaching on the devotional reading of Scripture in the near future and wanted to provide a historical perspective on Bible reading as a spiritual discipline. I want to emphasize that while personal reading of the Bible is important, reading in community is essential and is more in line with the history of the Church.

Any thoughts?

Posted in Bible, History of Interpretation | 12 Comments »

Hosts Needed for Biblical Studies Carnivals

27th December 2008

I need some hosts for future Biblical Studies Carnivals. I will be doing December’s BSC, while Judy Redman will host January’s over at Judy’s research blog. I would like to have six months organized, so step up and do your part.

If you would like to volunteer to host a Biblical Studies Carnival, please let me know by either emailing me at “codex [at] biblical-studies [dot] ca” or leaving a comment on this post with your blog and contact information. If you have volunteered in the past by somehow never got in the schedule, I apologize. Please send me an email and you will receive priority! I will also give preference to those who have not yet done a Carnival.

If you want more information, please see the Biblical Studies Carnival homepage.

Posted in Biblical Studies Carnival | 4 Comments »

Call for Submissions – Biblical Studies Carnival XXXVII

26th December 2008

This is just a friendly reminder to submit some of your favourite posts of the month to the next Biblical Studies Carnival that will be hosted by yours truly right here at Codex. My plan is to have the 37th BSC uploaded for the first of the new year.

In order to save me considerable work, please nominate some posts today (and tomorrow, the next day, and the day after that…) It’s really easy. You have two options:

  1. Send the following information to the following email address: biblical_studies_carnival AT If you’re not sure whether a post qualifies, send it anyway and the I will decide whether to include it.
    • The title and permalink URL of the blog post you wish to nominate and the author’s name or pseudonym.
    • A short (two or three sentence) summary of the blog post.
    • The title and URL of the blog on which it appears (please note if it is a group blog).
    • Include “Biblical Studies Carnival [number]” in the subject line of your email
    • Your own name and email address.
  2. Use the submission form provided by Blog Carnival. (This is probably the easier option if you only have one nomination.) Just select “biblical studies carnival” and fill in the rest of the information noted above.

For more information, please see the Biblical Studies Carnival Homepage.

Posted in Biblical Studies Carnival | Comments Off

The End of An Era / The End of A Teaching Position

23rd December 2008

Last Wednesday I (and my colleagues) received received my six-month notice of the non-renewal of my teaching contract at Taylor University College, Edmonton, Alberta (TUC), due to “financial stringency.” Despite receiving a “pink slip” (and, no, it wasn’t even on pink paper… rather disappointing!), there was still some hope that government funding for an affiliation agreement the University of Alberta would allow Taylor University College to continue in an albeit modified form. Last Thursday (December 18) we learned that the provincial government was not willing to fund the affiliation with TUC and we were informed by our president that the University College will close its doors for good after this next semester. Thus, when my contract expires on June 30, 2009, I will be out of a job.

More significant than my own personal situation, is what this means for students, faculty, and staff, and Christian higher education in northern Alberta. Come July 2009 (and even before for some staff) there will be a lot of people looking for employment. In this regard faculty have the biggest challenge since faculty recruitment cycles have pretty much already passed for the next academic year and almost all of them would entail a move from Edmonton as well.

As far as my own situation, I am not sure what I will do. While I love academic teaching and feel “called” to it, there are very limited Hebrew Bible/Old Tesament teaching opportunities in Edmonton and I am very reluctant to move my family — especially considering the age of my children (my thirteen year old daughter’s only response to the news was to fold her arms and say very very firmly “I’m not moving!”). So, come July, I may be leaving academia and getting a “real” job. Time will tell.

So, this Christmas season, if you are a praying sort, please pray for the students, staff, and faculty of Taylor University College.

(The official announcement may be found at the TUC website:

Posted in News, Teaching | 13 Comments »