Sunday, October 09, 2011

Authenticity, Accuracy and Reliability


This past week I had the opportunity to be the designated respondent to a lecture presented at the Oklahoma City's Museum of Art - OKC MOA - connected to the private Biblical Antiquities collection owned by the Green Family, owners of Hobby Lobby, Inc.

Much more about the exhibit can be explored here: Explore Passages

As I understand it, my presentation will soon be available in DVD format - similar to this DVD in the same series. That is fun! My low quality - personal recording of my portion of the the presentation is available at this link: Michelson on Authenticity, Authority and Reliability of Scripture.

Additionally, I will be the first to announce here - what the President of my university, Southern Nazarene University will soon be announcing - I have been invited to become a Scholar-Mentor with the Green Scholar's Initiative. This will not only be exciting for me, working with the Green Collection - it is also exciting that through this series of connections, I will get to work with emerging young scholars who will continue to develop their ability to study and engage the Bible, working with unheard of access to primary texts and documents that have not yet been translated or researched!

At the most recent lecture, I was able to get this snapshot - including (from left to right) - Dr. Jerry Pattengale, Director of the Green Scholars Initiative; Dr. Loren Gresham, President of Southern Nazarene University; Steve Green, President of Hobby Lobby, Inc.; Dr. Stan Toler, General Superintendent for the Church of the Nazarene; and myself.

The lecture I responded to was entitled "Answers to New Theories Regarding How We Got the Bible." I used several news or book issues (Headlines in the Associated Press News, to Cover Stories in national magazines like the National Geographic, to popular HarperOne published best-sellers) to talk about the continuing authenticity, accuracy and reliability of Scripture - especially discerned in light of a Wesleyan Perspective on the role and function of Scripture. It is great to be a representative from the Church of the Nazarene invested in this process!

It was a great opportunity and I am anxious, myself, to see the DVD when it becomes available!

I am always delighted to have opportunity to share in other Churches or Synagogues regarding what we can know about the Bible. I'm excited that I get to share a small portion of this knowledge with other churches even this Fall.

What a privilege to share!

As a supplementary note - several weeks ago I was asked to provide a series of "sound-bite" quotes for the media group working with the advertisement and promotion of the Green Collection and the Green Scholars Initiative. I am not sure if and when any of these quotes might get used - but they accurately characterize my thoughts on the Green Collection:

Past Scholars in Biblical studies have been known to acquire treasured documents and use these documents to advance their own careers. The Green Collection and the Green Scholars Initiative is intentionally stewarding treasured documents in shared ways - to advance scholarship and discernment of the Bible for the world! Their work and their sharing is a sign of their commitment to let these Ancient texts continue to speak today!

The Greens have done the world of Biblical Scholarship a great favor in their willingness to share these important ancient texts. The Bible has shaped the culture of the world and the willingness to share these important, ancient texts demonstrate their kindness and their contribution to a world that is aware of the influence of the Bible.

The fact that the Green Family is committed to scholars and mentoring relationships, demonstrates that this is not a short-lived commitment by the Greens. By encouraging established scholars to share research and engagement of ancient texts with emerging scholars demonstrates a life-long- extended commitment to excellent scholarship in the area of Biblical studies.

Generations of scholars - and Biblical scholarship - will be forever shaped by the Green's willingness to share and steward these resources among small teams of scholars - and young people.

This will allow teams of scholars to study the ancient wisdom of the Bible - for applied discernment and extended influence in advancing good news for the future of our world.

Marty Alan Michelson, Ph.D.
Peacemaker, Pastor, and Professor at Southern Nazarene University

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