I’m Back!

In a comment posted earlier today, Jim West states that his presumption of my death appeared to be correct after all, and asks me to pass on his greetings to Zwingli in the other world. Setting aside my shock that Jim, a Baptist, is given to the practice of necromancy, I’m sorry to disappoint him (and others): I am alive and well, I have arrived safely in Puerto Rico, and like Mark Twain, I find that the reports of my death are greatly exaggerated!

Upon my return, I was greeted by an exceeding great amount of mail which included a couple of items of interest:

  • Those who have been following the saga of the damaged Orthodox Study Bible over the past few months (see here, here, and here) will be delighted to learn that I have finally received a flawless copy of the OSB to replace the severely damaged one that the publishers originally sent. It bears noting that the book was packed with the utmost care, and that it was not mechanically shrink-wrapped, but rather wrapped by hand, which suggests that it was subjected to careful scrutiny before shipping. Kudos to Conciliar Press for righting the wrong! After such a display of expeditious customer service, one imagines that Kevin’s communications merely fell through the cracks. The staff at Conciliar might take note and ensure that there are no unknown technical problems causing this.
  • I have finally had the satisfaction to peruse Ben Witherington III’s Letters and Homilies for Hellenized Christians (vol. 1), which I bought for an exceedingly low price from Mike Aubrey a number of months ago. (Thanks, Mike!) Though unfortunately I won’t have the time to examine this commentary in detail for yet a while, I am very much looking forward to that. I must, however, mention this: while I am in awe of Witherington’s prodigious literary output and his evident scholarly powers, I can’t help but be a little amused by his (systematic?) insistence on always championing some peculiar view or another, such as the notion that St Lazarus was the “Beloved Disciple” or the authenticity of the so-called “James Ossuary.” This commentary is no exception: here Witherington appears to champion the late great C. F. D. Moule’s proposal that St Luke the Evangelist was the amanuensis for the Pastoral Epistles. However, in this case I’m very interested in following his exegetical argument through, not only because I believe these Epistles to be authentically Pauline (the term “early catholicism” means nothing at all to me), but also because my inner neo-Griesbachian is continually fascinated by the interplay between St Luke and St Paul in the biblical canon. Of course, like everything else in Pauline studies, this proposal is closely tied to questions of chronology; I’m also looking forward, then, to revisiting that vexing matter. For this, I know of no better companion than Gerd Luedemann’s Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles: Studies in Chronology, which I have placed next to Witherington’s commentary (!) in anticipation of the coming day on which I shall be able to plunge into both.

In closing, I should like to take this chance to note that the one-year (i.e., silver, in internet time) anniversary of The Voice of Stefan occurred last Sunday, July 13. A year, and still alive and kicking (death reports notwithstanding)! Many thanks to all who have taken the time to read, comment and otherwise interact with me over the past year. I can only hope that the next year will likewise be filled with your input and friendship.

9 responses to “I’m Back!

  1. Do you speak the early modern version of the Swiss dialect well enough to have an extended conversation with Zwingli?

    (I mean, assuming he made it to heaven with his eating the two [presumably non-kosher] smoked sausages on March 9, 1522 and all.)

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  2. Welcome back! I pray that all is well and your stay in the states was enjoyable!

    And congrats on all the books — I literally can’t wait for some reviews! Consequently, I have a request in with Concordia but haven’t heard anything back (it’s been a month). I’m not getting my hopes up.

    Also, happy anniversary!

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  3. καὶ ἀνεκάθισεν ὁ νεκρὸς καὶ ἤρξατο λαλεῖν

    Happy anniversary, welcome back, see you.

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  4. Iyov> Well, I was counting on the visio beatifica of the Latins to provide comprehensive knowledge of such things as Swiss German–assuming Zwingli made it in spite of his rabid iconoclasm (which, directed as it was to statues, doesn't seem all that bad to me!). ;-)

    And I put the comments on moderation while I was away to ward off spam and such, but I forgot to turn it off yesterday. Oops.

    Nick> Thank you, man! I did throughly enjoy my stay; what I don't enjoy so much is the maddening heat here in Puerto Rico. Ugh.

    As for Concordia, they took a really long time to get back with me–I think like eight months. So, don't give up hope!

    Kurk> I guess my choice would have been: Τί ζητεῖτε τὸν ζῶντα μετὰ τῶν νεκρῶν; ;-)

    Thanks, and see you too! I have so much catching up to do.

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  5. Welcome home. Now start packing.

    I’m pleased to hear that you’ve finally received my intended gift. (I’m still annoyed.)

    As you’ll have noticed our mutual friend at Ora et Labora has likewise surfaced.

    It’s a happy month.

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  6. job,
    dude, you need to get better info. zwingli in fact did NOT eat any sausage at that particular gathering. he was there, and by his presence agreed with their lenten disobedience, but you are wrong to think he ate any.

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  7. They sent you Hägglund’s History of Theology for review?! I soooo want to read that book. I’ve been posting a translation of an essay of his on the regula fidei as basis for theological statements. Childs recommended it to Daniel Driver in an interview as one of the most influential essays he had read.

    How does one get these review copies anyway?

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  8. Mimi> Thanks! Now, if I only posted a little more to show I'm back like I say I am… ;-)

    Kevin> The enduring annoyance is quite understandable! But behold, we'll have have our day of reckoning. ;-) Thank you once again, so very much, for giving, uh, the gift that keeps on giving.

    I'm delighted that our Felix Culpa is back too–though I'm a bit worried that he might have had a relapse, since he stopped posting again. But then, maybe he was just busy playing catch up, like I've been!

    Jim> Oh, glory be! Oh, happy day! Zwingli did not eat the sausage during Lent! But wait–did he eat it outside Lent?! Well, at least it wasn’t Blutwurst; Luther is surely in trouble for rejecting the contemporary application of Acts 15 with respect to those. ;-)

    Phil> My initial thoughts on Hägglund's History of Theology I’ve shared with you over on your blog; when you come back from holiday, we’ll talk more. As for how you get the review copies, you just contact a publisher’s publicity department, introduce yourself and your blog, and politely request them! It’s worked marvelously for me. :-)

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