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January 2010 - Volume XL No. 1 E-mail
Written by Ian Boxall   
Friday, 01 January 2010 00:00

Welcome to the first on-line edition of Scripture Bulletin. The Executive Committee of the Catholic Biblical Association is most appreciative for the very generous donations from subscribers which have made this new
venture possible. We hope that this new format will enable the journal to reach out to a wider audience, as well as to our existing body of readers.

In the modern tendency to oppose Science to Theology, and against a general preference for the ‘scientific’ prosaic over the poetic, the Bible is regularly regarded as a problematic text. In her article on ‘Reading the
Bible after Darwin,’ at the end of a year marking the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth, Mary Mills examines the presuppositions underlying both creationist and evolutionary treatments of the Bible, and explores an alternative and more nuanced strategy for reading Genesis. She finds in the early chapters of Genesis some similar interests, though differently expressed, to those found in evolutionary theory. She also highlights ways of reading Genesis which prioritise human responsibility over human ‘dominion’.

In the latest article in our ‘What are they saying about…?’ series, Peter Anthony offers a wide-ranging exploration of recent trends in scholarship on Luke-Acts. He shows the potential for complementing more established historical-critical approaches with other methods: holistic readings, for example, which encourage an approach to the finished text, and social scientific approaches. He also alerts us to some of the challenges posed, for example, by deconstructionist approaches and committed readings. This is a fine survey of the range of approaches on the current scholarly table, which includes suggestive pointers to the future shape of this fertile area of New Testament studies.

Our final article is what might be called an exercise in historical imagination, aiming to flesh out the historical and social context presupposed by the book of Revelation. Ironically, although authorial location is regularly regarded as significant for the interpretation of the gospels and the Pauline letters, John’s named context of Patmos has been largely ignored in scholarly discussions of the Apocalypse. This article hints at how to restore the balance, inspired by visits to Patmos itself.

Ian Boxall

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