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Data Over Dogma

Author: Daniel McClellan and Daniel Beecher

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This ain't your pastor's Bible podcast. This is a deep interrogation of the book, and we're bringing receipts. Bible scholar Dr. Dan McClellan and atheist podcaster Dan Beecher team up to discover what the Bible actually says, what it decidedly doesn't say (even if everyone thinks it does), and explore the history of the most popular book of all time.

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Episode 54: Black Hole Sun

Episode 54: Black Hole Sun

2024-04-1501:10:50

You ever wonder if nefarious scientists are feverishly working to open a portal to allow demons out to begin the apocalypse? Well don't. That's silly. Nevertheless, some people ARE worried about that. And so many other silly things! This week, we look at the hysteria brought on by the recent total solar eclipse here in the U.S. and what Biblical implications (if any) it might have had. Also, we talk about the Jerusalem council in the book of Acts, and the impact it had on the formation of early Christianity. As the early followers of Jesus sorted out what it means to allow gentiles into the fold, they had some decisions to make about what rules all the new kids had to follow. They had no idea how big an impact they were going to have! To all the Christians who love bacon- they say "you're welcome." For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
This week, it's a deep dive into the Biblical ideas of spirits, souls, trinitarian thought, evolutionary agency detection, demons... and that's just the first segment! What is a spirit or a soul, anyway? Where did that idea come from? And after we answer ALL those questions, who or what is the Holy Spirit? And then, you know, we talk about Elisha and the bears murdering a bunch of kids. For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
It's a big question these days. A deeply personal issue for many, a wedge issue for politicians (and that doofus Matt Walsh), and a point of A LOT of misinformation when it comes to the position of the Bible. Well, we're not qualified to talk about the personal or the political much, but on this week's show, we'll definitely be able to dive head-first into what the Bible has to say about the question of "what is a woman"? But before we get to that, we're diving into a murder mystery! An actual Biblical whodunnit. We all remember the story of when David killed Goliath, right? Well, what if that's not right? What if the giant Philistine was killed by someone else entirely, and David is just taking the credit? It's an episode of Law and Order: Bible Unit, and we're on the case. *Dun Dun* For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
It doesn't sound very nice, but this week we're asking the question: is religious belief the same as factual knowledge, or is closer to imagination? Cognitive scientist and philosopher Neil Van Leeuwen is here to walk us through the theory he puts forward in his book Religion as Make-Believe A Theory of Belief, Imagination, and Group Identity. And it is fascinating! Dr. Van Leeuwen dives deep into how our minds relate to the world around us. What distinguishes our understanding of what's in the room next to us from our ideas about who or what controls the universe? Is there a difference between what he calls a "religious credence" that God is present in your life and the factual belief that you're currently sitting on a soft brown sofa? What's going on in our brains when we believe something versus when we know it? Find the book here (or ask your local bookshop to order it for you): https://www.amazon.com/-/he/Neil-Van-Leeuwen/dp/067429033X For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
It's time for bunnies and chocolate, and recounting stories of brutal murder! For Christians around the world, Holy Week is an incredibly important time. But how well do you actually know the good, the bad, and the ugly of the last days of Jesus? But also... they weren't the last days, were they? This week, we're going through the Holy Week timeline and events to get some perspective on it all. Then, it's all about re-enlivening. Where did the idea of resurrection come from? What's its history? And did ancient Jewish people think of it the way we do now? For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Did Paul use slave labor to help him write his epistles? Would we even have a Bible without the work of enslaved people? This week, we welcome New Testament scholar Candida Moss, whose new book, God's Ghostwriters: Enslaved Christians and the Making of the Bible comes out later this month. In this book, Dr. Moss explores the widespread use of highly skilled enslaved people, not only as scribes or human dictation machines, but likely in much more creative capacities. Was your favorite passage of the Bible actually written or edited by an enslaved person? You can pre-order the book here: https://www.amazon.com/Gods-Ghostwriters-Enslaved-Christians-Making-ebook/dp/B0C9ZP7FB8 For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
What do we know about Jesus? Not the character who is the subject of the Christian Bible, but the actual historical figure? Who was that person? What can we know about him? Do scholars even believe that he actually existed? This week, we welcome Helen Bond to walk us through the actual history, or as much of it as we can piece together. On another just as fascinating front, we'll talk to Dr. Bond about the women of the New Testament. Did Jesus have female disciples (beyond his mom and Mary Magdalene)? Who were they? Did they fill important rolls in early Christianity? And if they were there, why weren't they included more in the text? For more Helen, check out the Biblical Time Machine podcast! For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
This week we're doing something a little different. We're working with our friends over at History Daily to bring you some content that, though it is not Bible related, we think you'll really enjoy! Every weekday on History Daily, host Lindsay Graham (American Scandal, American History Tellers) takes you back in time to explore a momentous event that happened ‘on this day’ in history. Give it a listen, and if you like it, subscribe! ***PLEASE CONSIDER TAKING OUR SURVEY! For a limited time, you'll be entered to win a $100 Amazon gift card!*** https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DATAOVERDOGMA For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Episode 46: GENOCIDE!

Episode 46: GENOCIDE!

2024-02-1901:09:171

It's a big, scary topic, but it's one that you can't avoid if you want to talk honestly about the the Bible and its contents: does the Bible contain genocide? And if so, does it condone the genocide it contains? On this week's show we're looking at mass destruction, and wrestling with what it is, and what it means in a biblical context. Is the story of the ordered annihilation of the Amalekites genocide, or is it something else? What about God destroying Sodom and Gomorrah? Or the flooding of the entire world? Did any of this even actually happen? But also, we talk about Jesus riding two donkeys. 'Cause that's just fun. ***PLEASE CONSIDER TAKING OUR SURVEY! For a limited time, you'll be entered to win a $100 Amazon gift card!*** https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DATAOVERDOGMA For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
You've probably heard of the Dead Sea Scrolls, but how much do you really know about them? Where did they come from, when were they discovered, and what can they tell us about the Bible as it was handed down to us? Also, are all the scrolls and fragments that have found their way into private collections and museums legitimate? This week we talk to expert Dr. Kipp Davis, who gives us the skinny on the scrolls. It's all the history and mystery surrounding what some have called the most significant archaeological find of all time. To see more of Kipp's work, head over to his YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@DrKippDavis Or check out his course on ancient Israelite religions: https://sales.mvp-courses.com/israelite-religions/ ***PLEASE CONSIDER TAKING OUR SURVEY! For a limited time, you'll be entered to win a $100 Amazon gift card!*** https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DATAOVERDOGMA For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
One man, one woman. That's what many pastors, priests, and politicians claim the Bible prescribes for marriage. Are they right? Can it be actually be boiled down to that one simple dynamic? Well, if you've been listening to our show, you know how completely unlikely that is. But don't just take our word for it, we've brought in a ringer on the subject! Dr. Jennifer Bird is the author of Marriage in the Bible, What Do the Texts Say? Dr. Bird is going to set us straight on biblical conceptions of marriage, what it means to be a husband or wife, and whether these ancient ideas of marriage are even applicable in a modern concept. Find Dr. Bird's book and more info about her on her website: https://www.jennifergracebird.com/ For early access to an ad-free version of Data Over Dogma, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
It's one of the most baffling moments of the new testament. Jesus talks to, and kills, foliage. Because he was hungry, and it was out of season, so it didn't have fruit. Dr. Dan does his best to make it make sense. Then we get into some really fascinating textual analysis! Don't let the fancy name intimidate you, this dive into deutero-Isaiah is super interesting. What do you think? Do you buy the hypothesis? Many have challenged the idea, but the Deut abides. For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Episode 42: Is Jesus God?

Episode 42: Is Jesus God?

2024-01-2201:03:46

Hooooo boy. This week, we're asking one of the biggest questions in Christianity. Is Jesus God? Specifically, we'll be looking at two questions. First, we examine the gospel most frequently cited to support the idea: the gospel of John. Literally, the first verse of John says "The Word was with God, and the Word was God", doesn't that kind of end the debate? Well, if you know this show, you KNOW it's going to be more complicated than that! We'll go verse by verse discussing why what you've always been told may not be the full story. It may not be the story at all! And since we're courting controversy already, why not go whole-hog? In our second segment, we're going after the Trinity. Where did the concept of a triune God come from? Is it in the Bible? If not, is it at least the best solution to the problem it was trying to solve? How did the idea become canon? Are we finally going to talk about something that actually happened at the Council of Nicaea? For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Brace yourselves, friends, 'cause this week's episode is getting racy! First, we're uncovering Noah in his tent, and his poor son Ham is going to regret going in there! It seems unfair, but apparently seeing your dad naked is a really big deal in the book of Genesis. Is it big enough to curse an entire lineage forever? Maybe. Hopefully Dr. Dan can help us figure out what's going on there. Next, we're kicking the Biblical legs out from under the pernicious cultural phenomenon of "modesty culture"! When pastors and preachers and priests (oh my!) get behind the pulpit and talk about how people should dress--and by "people" we obviously mean "women", because they never seem to have much to say about men's clothes--are they in line with the good book? What do all those verses they're quoting really mean? Well, this week we're going to determine exactly how short a skirt is allowed to be, how much shoulder is too much, and what offended parties should do when they see someone dressing in a way they don't approve of. For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
That's right, kids. We got an honest-to-goodness celebrity to come talk to us. Joel McHale, the dashing star of hit shows like Community, The Soup, and Animal Control has inexplicably decided to join us this week to talk about his experience as a believing Christian in Hollywood, and what it means to him to hear Bible scholarship like what we have here on Data Over Dogma. We also spend some time talking about one of the wilder stories from the Bible: the necromancer of Endor! Sadly, this is not the story of the most interesting Ewok. But it is about a king breaking his own laws to talk to his best prophet, despite the fact that he's dead. We're cooking up celebrity fun in the D/D crime scene kitchen. Join us! For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Beasts! Dragons! Blood! This week, we're talking about the last book of the New Testament, that wacky troublemaker of a book, Revelation. Who wrote it and why? Was it a fever dream? What era is it talking about? IS ARMAGEDDON COMING TO CLAIM US ALL TOMORROW? For the definitive answers to these questions... well, you'd have to ask a time traveler or sorcerer. But if you want the best answers modern scholarship has to offer, this is the place! For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Magi- they're the gift that keeps on giving! Last week we talked about a star, this week we're unpacking the mysteries of the fellas who followed that star. We've all seen them represented in nativity scenes: three men in elaborate dress, each bearing a different gift for the infant king, but is any of that actually biblical? What do we actually know about the Magi? What role did they play in the story? Fortunately, we have Dr. Eric Vanden Eykel with us to unpack it all. He literally wrote the book on the subject. His book The Magi: Who They Were, How They’ve Been Remembered, and Why They Still Fascinate delves deep into these enigmatic easterners. He'll help us dispel some common myths, and get a deeper understanding of Jesus' most baffling visitors. For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
A physicist? On a Bible podcast? At Christmas time? Well, there are a couple of ways that could go! This week, we welcome Dr. Aaron Adair onto the show. Dr. Adair's book, The Star of Bethlehem: A Skeptical View, discusses the famous star that led the wise men to baby Jesus in the book of Matthew. What could such a star have been? Is there a known heavenly body that could be used to guide someone to a specific place? How did it appear? Well, we got the guy who wrote the book on the subject, so buckle up. This one's going to be fun! For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
This week we're joined by Dr. Jacob Wright of Emory University. His new book Why the Bible Began leaves aside the questions of who wrote the Bible, what it is, when it was written, and how the Bible came to us, and instead focuses on the why. Why did the writings of this one small group of people survive and persist, when the records of much larger and more successful empires were often buried, forgotten, or lost to time? For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Will the real authors of the Bible please stand up? This week on Data Over Dogma, we dig deep into who wrote what and why we know what we know. Did someone named Matthew write the gospel of Matthew? Did Paul actually write ALL the Pauline epistles? Authorship is a big question when it comes to the Bible, and it can be a very contentious topic. But don't worry. We'll get through this together. For early access to an ad-free version of the show, exclusive content, and an opportunity to support our work, please consider becoming a monthly patron at: https://www.patreon.com/DataOverDogma      Follow us on the various social media places: https://www.facebook.com/DataOverDogmaPod https://www.twitter.com/data_over_dogma Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Comments (3)

Ozymandias Was Right

oof. First episode I listen to gets cut off at the end, and I'm told to pay to hear the end. Not a great start.

Mar 10th
Reply

Edgar Carpenter

don't do this to me. I don't want your suggestions.

Feb 26th
Reply

Mohsen Ganj

Maybe, maybe, Mery was tall.

Nov 17th
Reply
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