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“THE GNOSTIC JESUS” TOPIC OF INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED THEOLOGY 2006 FALL LUNCHEON LECTURE SERIES AT BARD COLLEGE Weekly series with the Rev. Dr. Bruce Chilton runs October 13 through November 3

Emily M. Darrow
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The 2006 Fall Lecture Series, “The Gnostic Jesus,” presented by the Institute of Advanced Theology at Bard College, will begin on Friday, October 13, and continue through Friday, November 3. Offered by the Rev. Dr. Bruce Chilton, the weekly luncheon lectures meet in the multipurpose room of the Bertelsmann Campus Center at 12:00 noon. The cost for each lecture (including lunch) is $15, $13 for members of the Institute of Advanced Theology. As space is limited, preregistration by October 6 is requested. “The discovery of an ancient library of diverse writings at Nag Hammadi in Egypt, together with associated finds, has transformed the study of Christian origins,” says Chilton, Bernard Iddings Bell Professor of Philosophy and Religion at Bard. “The diversity of belief, the complexity of controversy, the passion of divergent commitments, have all become plain in ways they were not before. Strangely, however, scholarship has not yet explored the connection between these texts and Jesus himself. Yet if the sources of Gnosticism are read as what they present themselves to be, reflections of religious experience rather than literal history, they illuminate a world of visionary practice that helped shape Christianity and the whole religious environment of late antiquity.” Bruce Chilton—who is also executive director of the Institute of Advanced Theology and chaplain of Bard College—is a scholar of early Christianity and Judaism, and the author of the first critical translation of the Aramaic version of Isaiah (The Isaiah Targum, 1987). He has written academic studies that put Jesus in his Jewish context (Rabbi Jesus: An Intimate Biography, 2000; Pure Kingdom, 1996; The Temple of Jesus, 1992; and A Galilean Rabbi and His Bible, 1984). Doubleday recently released his book Mary Magdalene: A Biography. -continued- Rabbi Paul: An Intellectual Biography, is now in paperback. Chilton has taught in Europe at the universities of Cambridge, Sheffield, and Münster, and in the United States at Yale University (as the first Lillian Claus Professor of New Testament) and Bard College. Throughout his career, he has been active in the pastoral ministry of the Anglican Church; he is currently rector of the Church of St. John the Evangelist in Barrytown, New York. The Institute of Advanced Theology (IAT) was established to foster critical understanding based on scholarship that will make true religious pluralism possible. Since its inception in 1996, the Institute’s work has focused on how religions influence history, society, and other religions, and are in turn influenced by them. The Institute gratefully acknowledges support from its members, the Crohn Family Trust, and Tisch Family Foundation, as well as grants from Bard College and The Levy Economics Institute at Bard College. For further information or to register for the series, call the Institute office at 845-758-7279, e-mail, or visit the website # # # (9/07/06)

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This event was last updated on 11-06-2006