Thursday, 31 March 2011

This blog isn't dead, it's just hibernating

It's been two months since my last post, which is the longest break this blog has experienced since I set it up in Sept 2007. I've already indicated in the past that my posting will be slowing down. There are a number of practical reasons: our daughter Jasmine, who arrived seven months ago, is still capturing a lot of my attention (she's doing amazingly, for those who are interested: nothing could have prepared me for the new and beautiful dimensions of life that her presence is opening up for Ingrid and I); I have a number of projects that I want to dedicate more time to (Hebrew tutor, translation work [currently Berges' intro to Isaiah]); I'm working to get this rather large thesis done by August; and I'm looking for future employers.

I could no doubt still work out time to keep on posting, but there are two further issues that are causing me to hold back. The first is a matter of my research interests. Most of this blog has been dedicated to Brevard Childs. When I started posting I had already worked out my ideas on his approach and used this blog as a platform to discuss and share them with others. For quite some time now, however, I've been dedicating my attention to Psalm 24 in an attempt to implement what I've sketched out as the content of Childs' canonical thesis. The scope of inquiry that Childs challenges us to engage in has kept me from remaining in one spot long enough to turn my thoughts into a series of posts. I'm attempting an integrative interpretation that takes into account diachrony and synchrony, cultic liturgy and canonical poetics, dogma and history, a new interpretation that connects with very ancient ones. The challenge that this poses for me has caused me to step back with the sharing my ideas and focus instead on hammering out my thesis. This leads to the second reason for my silence:

Entering the new waters of actually reading the Bible rather than talking about how one should read the Bible has obviously opened up a new box of challenges for me. It's exciting, and I would love to share my thoughts in one-to-one dialogue, but I don't feel that it is right to talk about them online just yet. There's a time for speaking (Ecclesiastes 3:7), and the prudent need to learn when to do so (Prov 10:19; 21:23; Sirach 20:6-7). I want to work my synthesis to its end and get my feet firmly established in Biblical soil before I return to cyberspace to share my thoughts and engage in the welcome critique that comes with that. Hence the fact that this blog isn't dead, just hibernating, storing up resources until the arrival of the right "season."

7 comments:

Ed Gentry said...

Thanks for the update Phil. I'm glad things are going well and look forward to when you are in a position to continue.

Phil Sumpter said...

Thanks Ed.

MokumAlef said...

Wishing you a happy and productive hibernation! See you at ISBL.

Phil Sumpter said...

Cheers, מקום אלף, it'll be great to finally meet you in person!

T. Webb said...

Phil, I'm just a faithful reader who appreciates your work. Have a good break, and enjoy your precious daughter while you work your thesis. My Google Reader will alert me when you start posting again!

Tim

Phil Sumpter said...

Hi Tim,

I am enjoying her indeed (though right now she won't stop crying, for some mysterious reason!).

Thanks for the kind remarks.

Luke said...

Phil,

I am really enjoying your blog. I am looking at doing some research in the Psalter. Heath Thomas, who studied with Gordon, encouraged me to contact you. If you would be willing send me an email at luke.wisley@gmail.com. I would love to run some things by you.

Thanks,

Luke