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SBL Teacher Newsletter

April 2010
Welcome to the monthly electronic publication, Teaching the BibleTB for short. Designed to support teachers of high school Bible electives, it features easy to read and reliable resources that you can use in your classroom. Send your comments to: Moira Bucciarelli.


The Lament of the Virgin in Eastern Orthodox Good Friday service
This piece of liturgical poetry from the 4th century imagines the crucifixion from the perspective of a mother watching her son suffer and die. This moving and poetic text is sometimes sung in Eastern Orthodox Good Friday services today.


What is O-livestream™?

O-livestream™ stands for "One live-internet-video-education stream," a technological vehicle for teaching modules that can poignantly enhance regular courses and classroom teaching as well as informal learning exchanges. O-livestream staff (educators and technologists) will consult and collaborate with interested high school teachers and schools to develop live, online video modules for their classrooms with specific content focus. For example, live video modules (of one week duration: with five sessions of one hour each) may focus on:

Introduction to Methods of Interpreting the Bible
Psalms, Lament Poems and Songs across Cultures
Prophets in the Bible and Qur’an
Prophetic Figures Today
Mass Movements & Justice

For more info, go to:

A project of the Foundation for Transforming Teachers and Technology

About the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL)
The SBL was founded in 1880 and is an international academic membership organization for people who teach, study, or are interested in academic study of the Bible and its related contexts and literatures. The Society’s mission is to foster biblical scholarship and does not hold any denominational or confessional stance, though many of our members are religious leaders.

Feature Essays

The Bible and Ancient Liturgy
By Virginia M. Kimball

In this essay, Professor of Theology Virginia Kimball takes a close look at how the Bible has been incorporated into worship in the Eastern Orthodox Tradition, from the days of the earliest Christians up to the present, with a special focus on biblical texts in the Good Friday service of Holy Week.

The Whole Eve
By Tammi Schneider

Eve gets a bad rap—mostly because of that fatal bite of the apple (or was it an apple? See below)—and Professor Schneider wants to change that by expanding your understanding of Eve’s importance in the book of Genesis.


Was it really an apple that Adam and Eve ate in the garden? (2:11)
By Ina Lipkowtiz

Professor Lipkowitz is a lecturer in the Literature department at M.I.T., where she teaches an Introduction to the Bible (both Hebrew Bible and New Testament). She has a special interest in language and food terms in the Bible. In this clip, Professor Lipkowitz answers our question about the apple.
Listen >>

Examples from the Greek Orthodox Good Friday Liturgy

The Beatitudes (with examples of typological readings and biblical references)
Listen >>

The Lamentations, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd stanzas
Listen >>


By David C. Driskell

The esteemed painter and printmaker, scholar and curator David Driskell gave us permission to share his arwork, “Eve and the Apple” for this issue. For more on the artist and the David C. Driskell center at the University of Maryland, see:
See print >>

Book Review

By James McCarty

America’s Prophet: Moses and the American Story
By Bruce Feiler

Author Bruce Feiler continues to write well on biblical themes; this time he returns from the lands of the Bible to American soil, and reflects on how Moses has influenced American culture and history. Reviewer James McCarty offers teachers insights into how this book may be of use in the classroom.

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