Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Who's Your Favorite/Who's the Best?
In his interview with Alan Bandy, Mike Bird noted the prowess of Richard Bauckham: But Richard Bauckham has got to be the guy I respect the most * every time he puts pen to paper you know it is going to be rigorous, insightful, provocative, and announce the end of some poorly argued assumption in biblical scholarship (e.g. the existence of Gospel “communities”). Indeed RB has the ability to focus like a laser, master the issues, take a totally different track from previous scholars, and change the state of scholarship. He certainly did this with God Crucified, which I thoroughly enjoyed and which takes a huge swipe at some mainstays of NT theology, and in an article on my dissertation topic: "Tamar's Ancestry and Rahab's Marriage: Two Problems in the Matthean Genealogy," Novum Testamentum 37 (1995) 313-329. Very, very insightful; loads of common sense in the first half.

Elsewhere on the blogosphere, Scot McKnight (himself a favorite of a few) confesses that Dale C. Allison is the greatest on a blurb in one of Allison's books. Seems like I remember Chris Tilling admitting to being a Tom Wright fan simply for the sake of ideas and writing ability. Blogfather says Ed Sanders is most definitely the man. I think Jim West argued for Bultmann.

Anyone care to state their favorite, or one single scholar they think has done truly great work in the field?


Blogger Clifford B. Kvidahl said...

Two of my favorites are D.A. Carson and C.K. Barrett.

11:14 PM, March 29, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not a student or academic just an Aussie Christian who reads some academic stuff occasionally - especially when I can get community access to a theological library.

I have enjoyed Bauckham's work in recent years if only because, sometimes when I read more scholary stuff - and especially Historical Jesus stuff - I shake my head and think (if you pardon some Aussie bluntness) what a wankfest. But of course, for a layperson like me to say it - or even for my minister to say it - just renegades us to the realm of the uncritical masses.

But when men and women like Bauckham say it, the rest of us are thankful. Sometimes I just want to punch the air when I read Bauckham.

I recall for example, just grinning wildly while reading Bauckham on gospel communities, and thinking hallelujah! Someone is finally calling this nonsense of what it is. And then passing his stuff on to others.

My current pet peeve is the honor-shame trend. I doubt that anyone who writes about this has ever lived in an honor-shame culture and could recognise how it manifests itself (I have)

Have plenty of other faves but Bauckham rocks.

BTW I also agree that Aussie exegetes rock, be they Protty or Catholics like Francis Maloney. We also have some promising Orthodox in Sydney who may be fun to watch in future. Must be all the sun and surf that makes for a clearer head ;-)

2:16 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger Chris Tilling said...

I have to say, Bauckham is my favourite too!

3:38 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger steph said...

Going down the doctoral tree: C.K. Barrett, Maurice Casey and James Crossley. Then another tree, Michael Goulder and Mark Goodacre. Great inspirations.

5:47 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger J. B. Hood said...


Yes it's true, often the apple doesn't fall too far from...

Well, it's cliched anyway. But you're breaking the rule! The goal is throwing out ONE standout...

6:12 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger steph said...

Sorry, I was born deviant, but they all have unique aspects of brilliance, can't have one without the others, favouritism is unfair and looks like hero worship, so I'm disqualified!

6:27 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger Jim said...

You are correct- Bultmann is the greatest New Testament scholar of all time. For the Hebrew Bible it's von Rad. And for Systematic Theology it's Emil Brunner. Finally, for Church history no one is better than Kurt Aland.

6:31 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger metalepsis said...

I would have to say Richard Hays; only because he totally revolutionized my understanding of Scripture!

7:00 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger Chris Petersen said...

For me it's a tie between James Dunn, Dale C. Allison, and John P. Meier.

7:40 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger J. B. Hood said...


Actually, I'm glad someone went deviant--it'd be boring if it wasn't. I thought someone might throw in a woman somehow--Schussler Fiorenza or maybe even Karen Jobes. At least we got a woman to participate at some level...

7:42 AM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger steph said...

How about Diana Edelman and the prolific Karen Armstrong? (whoops that's two)

8:56 AM, March 30, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dale C. Allison, Rickard Bauckham, Craig Evans, James Sanders, Scot McKnight, N. T. Wright, Ed Sanders, J. P. Meier, James D. G. Dunn, James Charlesworth, Joel Markus, Richard Hays. I've learned so much from all of these guys.

Danny Zacharias

12:01 PM, March 30, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Women? Morna Hooker

5:01 PM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger J. B. Hood said...

Great point about Hooker. Paula Fredriksen is another great one--blogfather certainly thinks so! Marianne Meye Thompson may be on her way...maybe I should have asked for favorite/best male and female.


There you go again, breaking the rules. Same with you, Danny Zach.

5:41 PM, March 30, 2006  
Blogger Billy V said...

One of my favorites is F F Bruce. If I am teaching at my church I will look to him first for a good blend of scholarly pursuit and spiritual guidance. Dated? Yes, but still valuable to me.

4:31 PM, April 03, 2006  

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