SBL Paper (Midwest Region 2009)

Yesterday went very well. I got GREAT feedback, some very good questions were asked and felt like I fielded all of the inquiries quite well. I had a good time. I noted in my last post that I'd post an audio version of the paper, so, that is below. Again, the paper was titled: "A 'New' Reason for Jesus' Death: Reading Mark Socio-Culturally". If you have any thoughts, comments or questions, please, feel free to leave them.

*A new, more user-friendly audio player has been posted. With this player, due to some of the fuzziness of the audio, it sounds at times like I have a lisp, which I do not. Anyway, enjoy!


  1. Hey Michael,

    I have tried and tried to click on the quicktime link for your paper presentation, but it is not working. What should I do?

  2. Rod,
    I will try to fix it momentarily. Sorry for the inconvenience. It was working just fine yesterday. Check back shortly friend.

  3. Rod,
    A new audio player has been posted. This should work just fine for you now. Let me know what you think.


  4. Thanks Michael.

    I thought it was an excellent. To add to your point about Jesus making a distinction about his ministry and that of John the Baptist, I could not agree more. Especially when in the 1970s, Raymond Brown was arguing that some of the Gospel of John was written with the intention (his speculation, which is obviously biased) that the Johanine Messianic community wanted to disspell of the possible rumor that John the Baptist claimed to be the Messiah. Thus, it is John's version of Jesus' baptism where Jesus' agency is highlighted more as well as John, in the first chapter, claiming that one greater than himself will come after him, not just once, but twice.

    I have never ecountered the argument that the wineskins metaphor in Mark could be Jesus making a distinction between himself and the Baptizer. I am mostly convinced that you are correct, given the context of the statement. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Rod, glad you enjoyed the lecture. Thanks for your kind words and encouragement. My argument about the wineskins analogy being about a distinction between JB and JC, in my view "HAS" to be the "ONLY" correct interpretation. There is no way the others can work, as I suggested. Unless one can prove that JB and the officials were aligned, they cannot argue otherwise. I believe that I am the first to make this particular argument but regardless, the other views just do not hold water!

    I am presenting a paper in Cincy in April titled "Why Jesus Was Baptized: Immersed in Mark's Culture & Story". In that paper, I deal a bit with the continuity / discontinuity between Jesus and John. In fact, a lot of my research on the first few chapters of Mark has dealt with this very issue as of late. Anyway...

    Thanks again for listening and making thoughtful comments. I appreciate that very much!

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