I am currently in Vienna at the International SBL. I read a paper here in the Historical Jesus section. The paper went well and will be published in a volume on Jesus that will be a collection of the presentations. The seminar as a whole was called Jesus in Continuum. The idea is that one can discuss the historical Jesus by seeing how he is a transition from Jewish practice to those of the early church. I labeled this the "middle" Jesus.One of the interesting features of the section is how much other NT scholars are seeing as going back to Jesus. This has not normally been the case I am not sure why this is, but it has been the case here. In the section were presentations by people like James Charlesworth (Princeton), Christopher Tuckett (Oxford) and Gerd Theissen (Heidelberg). It has been a beneficial time.Another element in the works is that NT scholars and Second Temple Jewish scholars are discussing getting together to talk more informally about the relationship of these disciplines to each other. In the last fifty years, these areas have become more specialized and complex. The cross contact has been limited. The hope is to reverse this trend. I have been asked to be a part of this process.So a great time in Vienna, which also is a lovely city that in the summer has their city square open with concerts and operas or plays projected on a big screen each night in the open air with food available from around the world as you sit and watch. An affordable dinner and a concert---that is pretty nice.I leave for Romania tomorrow where after 11 hours on a train I speak in Arad over the weekend at the church of Cristian Barbosa, a graduate of our school from a few years ago. Then it is on to Sibiu in Romania for the SNTS, the International Meeting of NT scholars.
International SBL Vienna July 26