Until a few years ago elementary school students knew that in order to succeed in school they needed to know the three Rs: reading, ʼriting, and ʼrithmetic. Today, with the age of computers and modern technology, the three Rs have almost become irrelevant in modern curriculums.
Not so in academia. Since January, I have been on sabbatical. My sabbatical will continue through the end of summer. During the next several months I need to dedicate as much time as possible to the two Rs: reading and ʼriting in order to finish my sabbatical project.
Several weeks ago, Chris Brady at Targuman proclaimed the month of January 2008 to be Biblical Studies Academic Writing Month. In his proclamation, Chris asked Bibliobloggers and Theobloggers to write an article, a book review, or any material related to the Bible that could be submitted for publication.
The challenge was accepted by Tim Bulkeley at SansBlogue, by Chris Heard at Higgaion, by AKMA at Random Thoughts, by Charles Halton at Awilum, and by others whose names I have not listed here.
During the Biblical Studies Academic Writing Month, I committed myself to the following projects:
1. To write a book review of Mario Liverani’s book, Israel’s History and the History of Israel. London: Equinox, 2003.
2. To write a book review of Ann E. Killebrew’s book, Biblical Peoples and Ethnicity: An Archaeological Study of Egyptians, Canaanites, Philistines, and Early Israel 1300-1100 B.C.E. Leiden: Brill, 2005.
3. To complete an article on Asa, King of Judah.
I am glad to say that I finished my three projects by the end of January. All three projects have already been submitted for publication.
In addition, during the month of February I will finish two more book reviews and four small articles that will be published in an encyclopedia of Christian scholars. My assignments are to write a short biography on Julius Wellhausen, William F. Albright, Walter Brueggemann, and Norman K. Gottwald. I am almost finished with the four biographies and with the book reviews.
All this work means that my time for blogging will be very limited during my sabbatical. My commitment to my academic work must take precedence over extra-curricular activities such as blogging. For this reason, my blogging for the next several weeks will be sporadic. As the writer of the book of Ecclesiastes said: “There’s no end to the publishing of books, and constant study wears you out so you’re no good for anything else” (Ecclesiastes 12:12 Msg).
So, for the next several weeks I will not be “good for anything else” except R&R: reading and ʼriting and probably, most of my blogging will be related to what I am reading and writing. In addition, I may not be able to post every day. So, be patient with me. I love blogging and I enjoy the contact with readers.
As I said before, I will say again: “I’ll be back.”
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary
Tags: Blogging, Sabbatical