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Tutor's paper wins award

KEDS tutor Jermo van Nes, who is currently completing his PhD at the Evangelische Theologische Faculteit, Leuven (Belgium), recently presented a paper at the European Association of Biblical Studies, which received the best student paper prize. 

In the award-winning paper “Hapax Legomena in Disputed Pauline Letters: A Reassessment” Jermo focuses on the number of hapax legomena (defined as words used exclusively in a text) in the so-called disputed Pauline letters – Ephesians, Colossians, 2 Thessalonians, 1-2 Timothy, and Titus. For many scholars, the large number of hapaxes in these letters as compared to the so-called undisputed letters of Paul serve as evidence that they were written by someone other than the apostle.

By using simple linear regression analysis (a statistical method widely used in the sciences but not yet in New Testament studies), however, it is concluded that only 1 and 2 Timothy use significantly more hapaxes. If proper noun hapaxes as well as hapaxes used in explicit quotations and in virtue and vice lists are not taken into consideration, it even appears that none of the disputed Pauline letters use significantly more hapaxes. As such, it is questionable whether scholars should continue to use the number of hapaxes in these letters as an argument against their Pauline authorship.

Instead, the question of authorship should better be debated in terms of the letters’ history and theology.

 

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Pentecostalism and Ecumenism

KEDS Tutor Dr Raymond Pfister recently had a chapter entitled "Pentecôtismes, œcuménisme de l'Esprit et unité des chrétiens" (Pentecostalism, Ecumenism of the Spirit and Christian unity) published in a new book edited by Michel Mallèvre, L'unité des chrétiens: Pourquoi ? Pour quoi ? (Collection Cerf Patrimoines. Paris : Les Editions du Cerf, 2016).


Further details of the publication are available here (in French). Dr Pfister, who is French, has published extensively on the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements in French, English and German. He is also an Italian speaker.
 

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KEDS 2016 Conference (Broadstairs, Kent)

Join us by the seaside on 19 November for our day conference, to be held at our headquarters in lovely Broadstairs, Kent. 

This year’s annual conference will be focusing on where theology, biblical interpretation and cultural engagement intersect. You’ll  find sessions for everyone, whether students on matters relating to theological education, workshops on advanced biblical interpretation, and talks on how Christians can effectively engage society and the major cultural challenges facing the Church today.

The conference and resources on offer are designed for students and lay Christians alike.

Download a conference brochure and programme.
Book your place now (but hurry, spaces are limited)
Contact the KEDS office if you have any questions
 

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KEDS Publication Shortlisted for Book Prize

A KEDS publication exploring the role of the European churches in the Holocaust has been shortlisted for an important Christian book prize in Australia. The book, entitled They Conspire Against Your People: The European Churches and the Holocaust, was authored by Colin Barnes and published by KEDS..

Barnes' book explores the extent to which the European churches and their theology contributed to a mindset that permitted the genocide of six million Jews during the Holocaust.  The Holocaust was a progression of increasingly lethal measures: vilification, boycotts, deportation, ghettoization and mass murder.

This pattern echoed the European churches’ own historical Jewish policy and underpinned their support for earlier Nazi Jewish policies. Thus, instead of opposing genocide they opted for a guilty, deliberate silence.

Particularly significant is how the book moves beyond an examination of Catholic responses to explore also Protestant, including Evangelical, responses and actions.

KEDS first became involved in the project in late 2009 when the author, having come across KEDS Principal Dr Calvin Smith's personal website and his work in the field of Jewish-Christian Studies, contacted Dr Smith with a copy of his manuscript (which was the product of a research degree dissertation). Barnes explained how none of the Christian publishers he had approached had expressed an interest in the manuscript. Dr Smith recalls:
 

When Colin contacted me and I first read through the manuscript, which provides a well-documented and researched study examining the role and mindset of Christians during the genociude of the Holocaust, I could understand why many Christian publishers would be unenthusiastic about publishing and trying to sell a book setting out another shameful episode of Christendom's treatment of the Jewish people.

 

Yet we felt that Colin's research yielded an important story that needed to be told. Thus, after a lengthy peer-review and production, process beset with delays and problems - not least raising the funds to publish such an unpopular topic - the book was eventually published. Importantly, it has been endorsed by several well-known scholars recognising the scholarly nature of the research it contains. I am delighted that it has since been shortlisted for this important Christian book prize.


Colin Barnes is now a tutor at KEDS contributing to modules in Jewish-Christian Studies.

The 2016 Australian Christian Book of the Year award is organised by SparkLit (the new name for the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge [SPCK] Australia). This is the 35th annual event, with 57 entries in 2016. The winner of the final shortlist of ten titles will be announced on 18 August in Blackburn North, Victoria.

Full details of the book and how to purchase it are available on the book page of our website. A Kindle version is also scheduled for publication at the end of this month.



 

 

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Tutor's New Book on Christian Zionism and the EU

Dr Elvira King, who recently joined us here at KEDS, has had a new book published which explores religious lobbying within EU institutions. The book is entitled The pro-Israel Lobby in Europe: The Politics of Religion and Christian Zionism in the European Union and is published by IB Tauris. The publisher's website states: 
 

"Through a detailed study of the European Coalition for Israel (ECI), the only Christian Zionist lobby in Brussels, Elvira King analyses whether and how a religious group can (and can fail to) influence decision-makers in the EU. By exploring the context of European relations with Israel as well as the mechanisms through which pressure groups are able to influence EU-wide policies, King offers an analysis which demonstrates how the EU can be a site where religion and politics meet, rather than just being a secular institution. It therefore contains vital primary research for both those interested in the pro-Israel lobby as well as those examining the role of religion in politics more generally."


Congratulations to Dr King for the publication of this important and scholarly piece of research.

 
 

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New Faculty Welcome

KEDS is pleased to welcome Stephen D. Campbell to its faculty for the upcoming 2016-17 school term. Stephen and wife Beth originate from Texas; but, together with their one-year-old, Caleb, they are currently residing in Durham as Stephen is in the Integrated PhD program of the Department of Theology and Religion at Durham University. Combined with two previously attained Master's degrees in theology, the estimated completion of his PhD is Fall 2019 with research concentrating on the topics of communal memory and the function of Deuteronomy 1–4.

Having a love for the Old Testament and a desire to train pastors how to read, understand and teach the Old Testament in meaningful ways, we look forward to Stephen's fervour for the Old Testament contributing to King's goal of offering innovative theological studies by distance learning.

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Principal's New Chapters on Latin American Pentecostalism

KEDS Principal Dr Calvin Smith recently had two new chapters published in two volumes exploring Latin American Pentecostalism.

The first, in a volume edited by Néstor Medina and Sammy Alfaro, explores Pentecostalism and politics in revolutionay Nicararagua and is entitled, "Revivalism as Revolutionary, Reactionary, or Remote: Pentecostal Political Heterogeneity in Sandinista Nicaragua".

The second chapter, which explores a growing wave of Pentecostalism in Cuba and its relations with the revolutionary government of Fidel Castro, was published recently in a volume edited by Amos Yong, Vinson Synan and Miguel Alvarez. The title of the chapter is "Cuba's New Revolution: From Religious Apathy to Pentecostal Revival".

Dr Smith also has a forthcoming chapter in another volume exploring the history, nature and politics of European Pentecostalism. His chapter focuses on Pentecostalism in Spain, with a particular emphasis upon Evangelicals under the Franco regime (he was raised in Spain as the son of missionaries during the latter stages of the regime). That volume will be published later this year. Meanwhile, Dr Smith is currently researching for a book on Spanish Pentecostalism.

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KEDS alumnus joins new Hong Kong University Faith and Science forum

The engagement of science with religion has a history stretching back as long as science itself. The exact form that such engagement takes is shaped by a combination of factors inherent to the particular areas of scientific and religious activity involved, as well as by the prevailing historical and cultural contexts. Hong Kong is unusual in that academic scientists are more open religious ideas than the general population.

Despite this, the political, religious and scientific history of the region means that engagement between science and religion in the academy is relatively in its infancy, compared to places like Europe and North America.

Mike Brownnutt (KEDS student from 2011-2014) has been involved in starting up the Faith and Science Collaborative Research Forum, to develop and enrich the interactions between religion and science/engineering research in Hong Kong. Based at the University of Hong Kong, it supports and equips academics in science, engineering, theology and philosophy across Hong Kong to fruitfully connect scientific research with religious thought.

Mike has long had an interest in the relationship between science and religion. He obtained an MA in theology from the King’s Evangelical Divinity School, with his master’s thesis considering how “faith” is understood in discourses on the relationship between Christianity and science. He also has a master’s degree (MSci in physics) and a PhD (in experimental quantum mechanics) from Imperial College London. He spent eight years in Innsbruck, Austria, firstly as a post-doctoral researcher and later as an Assistant Professor, developing scalable architectures for quantum computers. He has now moved to Hong Kong as Associate Director of the Faith and Science Collaborative Research Forum.

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KEDS tutor's new book on 1 Peter

KEDS tutor Dr Patrick Egan has just had a new book published examining the text of 1 Peter. He argues that 1 Peter sets forth an ecclesiology based in a participatory christology, in which the church endures suffering in imitation of Jesus’ role as the suffering servant.

The epistle admonishes the church to a high moral standard in light of Christ’s atoning work while also encouraging the church to place hope in God’s final vindication of his people.

Addressing the churches of Asia Minor, 1 Peter applies the scriptural narrative to the church in unexpected ways. 

Further details of the volume, which has been endorsed by Professor Richard Bauckham (Cambridge) and Professor Grant Macaskill (Aberdeen), are available here.

 

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  1. Well done, Susan!

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