I sent out this monthly newsletter for June yesterday via email to subscribers to the Blog. I usually don’t post it here but decided to do so to encourage any readers who have not signed up for it can do so–and you can also sign up for notifications for future blog post (see forms in the right side-bar or at the end of any post on a mobile device).
June 19, 2023
June is whizzing by and we will officially enter summer this week—at least in this hemisphere! I have a lot I wanted to update you all on so here goes…
I launched my on-line course on the Gospel of Mark (“Creating Jesus: How the Gospel of Mark was Forgotten”) through MythVisionPodcast Courses back in February and have been meeting with my students via Zoom once a month since. We have been doing Q&A and talking about lots of issues that relate to the course. All those sessions are recorded and uploaded to the Course content—so anyone who takes the course even now can catch up on things. I love getting to interact with these “face-to-face,” “virtual” meetings—and everyone seems to really appreciate this personal and direct involvement.
This coming Sunday, June 25th at Noon ET we will have our fourth Zoom session. If any of you want to sign up for the course between now and then you will get the email invitation to participate—and it will be posted on the course site. Here is the link to sign up: https://mythvisionpodcast.com/firstgospel.
Speaking of courses—in July I am flying out to Washington state to film three new courses with Derek Lambert of MVP: “Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls,” “Apocalypticism Through the Ages,” and “Discovering the Real Apostle Paul.” I will update you on those in July, and lay out some of the details of what they cover, but I anticipate the release of the first one by August at the latest.
Join my Patron Research Team
Speaking of virtual face-to-face Zoom meetings, I also have been meeting with my Patreon group monthly—as well as exchanging countless messages and posts with this “inside group” who support my research. Any of you are all welcome to be part of that as well—and your level of contribution is up to you—as little as $5 per month gives you everything we offer there. I have “giving tiers” but everyone gets the same benefits—following the old biblical principle—“to each according to ones means.” All contributions go into a research fund and I consider all patrons as extended members of my research consulting group. This patron group tends to be really well read, and full of good ideas and questions related to research on my field of ancient Judaism and “Christian Origins.”
For the past two months we have been delving deeply into the latest work I am doing on tombs, skeletal remains, and DNA testing—especially involving the Talpiot tombs, and the tomb of the Shroud, and Masada. Our next meeting is Saturday, June 24that Noon ET. All patrons receive an email invitation.
We will have Jerry Lutgen, executive director of HistorTek, as our guest. Jerry and I will talk with the group about the latest plans for new DNA testing, using Next Generation DNA Sequencing (NGS) of Herodian Jerusalem necropolis tombs. Check out the Patreon homepage and you are welcome to join us if you are interested: https://www.patreon.com/jamesdtabor
YouTube and Blog Updates
I know many of you follow my TaborBlog and Youtube Channel. I have been posting a lot the past few weeks. Let me start with the Blog. I have a new feature I began just last week called Tabor Bookshelf. My plan is to highlight books I recommend with short reviews. As I wrote on the site, I will not include a book unless I own it, have read it, and consider it among the best on the subject. I also plan on doing interviews on my Youtube channel (@jamestaborvideos) with selected authors in coordination with these listings. I have only begun this feature but you can check it out here—if you use the Amazon links I provide a tiny percentage of the price of the book goes into my research fund: https://jamestabor.com/book-recommendations/
I am also continuing to develop the new feature “The Jewish Roman World of Jesus,” which I invite you to check out. It is growing by the day and eventually will contain all my teaching notes and archive materials from my college courses over the years. There is already a lot there and I post several things a week: https://jamestabor.com/the-jewish-roman-world-of-jesus/
My Youtube channel, as of this morning, has 190 videos—and I have reached nearly 32K subscribers. I know many of you have enjoyed and profited from these presentations and I have much more planned for the future. I have now finished the series I began last year “Narrating the Jesus Story,” be sure and check it out if you have not.
So far this month I have posted 12 new videos—they range from very short to very in-depth—up to an hour or two—which I know many of my viewers love. Here are three of the most popular over the last two weeks–one just never knows what will catch on with the Youtube world but all of these quickly gathered thousands of views:
|Okay, finally, before I exhaust you all—I am in the process of putting together two tours for 2024. One will be in the Spring (“Tracking Jesus”) and the other, a new one, in the Fall (“Jesus Across the Jordan”). Many of you have already written me of your interest and I have saved those emails. Information on both these tours will be available by the end of the summer. I only take 30 people on each, to allow personal interaction among all of us.|
I also want to encourage as many of you who are able and interested to register and attend two special events in the Fall where I am on the program—not virtually—but face-to-face, “in the flesh” at last—after three years of virtual conferences during the Covid shutdowns.
First, the International Symposium on Archaeology and the Bible VIII, September 20-23 in Albuquerque, NM. I will be presenting three lectures, along with a really great group of fellow scholars on the program. Here are the details—and space is limited so if you are interested you should reserve your spot soon: https://www.isabq.org/
Second, the Biblical Archaeology Society 26th annual “Bible and Archaeology Fest, November 17-19, in San Antonio, TX—my hometown. This fabulous event, with over twenty scholars, has been a highlight of the year for folks wanting to “meet the scholars” for the past 25 years. Here is the link: https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/travel-study/26th-annual-bible-and-archaeology-fest/
Well that is enough for now—I hope you will find all this information and these opportunities as exciting as I do. Wishing you all the very best and hope I will see you around via Zoom or in person at one or more of these opportunities.