Spirits in Scripture and in Today's Church

January 26, 2017   7:00 pm – 8:00 pm  EST

Many people today are taught to separate the spiritual from the intellectual. For the church, this division is perhaps nowhere more strained than in our reading of scripture. Stories of prophetic frenzy, spirit empowerment, and demonic possession in the Bible are often explained away as metaphor, mental illness, or mistaken identity (if not simply ignored). But the pervasive role of spirit phenomena in early Judaism and Christianity creates a tension for those seeking to read the Bible as scripture.

This webinar tells the abbreviated story of spirits in the Bible, beginning in ancient Israel and continuing into Second Temple Judaism and the New Testament. Along the way we discover how conceptions of spirits were essential for discerning a notion of the moral self as well as of a spirit-filled body of Christ. Practical guidance for parish discussion and preaching are included.

The webinar is presented by the Rev. Reed Carlson, 2015 ECF Fellow and a doctoral candidate in Hebrew Bible/Old Testament at Harvard University.